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Fad Diets

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Fad Diets

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  1. Fad Diets ATP Nutrition Presentation 3/21/14

  2. What are fad diets? *TEMPORARY eating patterns *Promote SHORT-TERM weight loss *Usually focused on SINGLE element *Pseudo-Scientific claims *No LONG-TERM maintenance *Popular MEDIA term

  3. What are fad diets? Three General Categories: 1. Particular food/food group exaggerated to cure disease 2. "Harmful" food(s) eliminated from diet 3. Certain foods eaten to express particular lifestyle

  4. Red Flags of a Fad Diet 1. Recommendations that promise a quick fix 2. Dire warnings of dangers from a single product or regimen 3. Claims that sound too good to be true 4. Simplistic conclusions drawn from a complex study 5. Recommendations based on a single study 6. Dramatic statements that are refuted by reputable scientific organizations 7. Lists of "good" and "bad" foods 8. Recommendations made to help sell a product 9. Recommendations based on studies published without peer review 10. Recommendations from studies that ignore differences among individuals or groups

  5. Fad Diet #1: The Paleo Diet The "Caveman" Diet *Follows our genetic make-up *Eating unprocessed foods *Listening to your body • •

  6. The Paleo Diet - Benefits *Lower saturated fat intake *No trans fat *High antioxidant, vitamin, and mineral intake *High in mono-, poly-, and omega-3 fatty acids *Low in sodium *High in fiber and potassium *No drastic energy spikes/ crashes *Filling food choices *Healthy fats *No need to count calories *Possible association with decrease in cancer

  7. The Paleo Diet - Problems *Ketone build-up *$$$ *Hard to follow *Potential for iron overload *Can raise cholesterol, increasing risk for heart problems, if meat isn’t lean *Lack of proper nutrients *Exceeds recommended calories from fat/ day + Below recommended calories from carbs/day

  8. Fad Diet #2: The Cabbage Soup Diet *"Lose 10 pounds in 7 days" • Day 1: Fruits + soup • Day 2: Vegetables + soup + baked potato at dinner • Day 3: Combine days 1 & 2 (without potato) • Day 4: Bananas + skim milk + soup • Day 5: Beef + tomatoes + soup • Day 6: Beef + vegetables + soup • Day 7: Brown rice + unsweetened fruit juice + vegetables + soup *Do for one week and then resume normal eating for at least two weeks

  9. The Cabbage Soup Diet Pros *Short-term, fast weight loss *Can eat as much as you want of the foods *Nutritious fruits and vegetables *Low in fat *High fiber Cons *Not for long-term (>7 days) *Soup is bland *Extremely low calories *Low in complex carbs, protein, vitamins, and minerals *Light-headed, weak, and decreased concentration

  10. Fad Diet #3: The Master Cleanse *A juice fast, consisting of lemon, maple syrup, cayenne pepper, and water *3 phases: • Ease-in: 3 days of removing processed foods from diet • The Lemonade diet: 10 days • Ease-out: 3 days of eating more and more complex foods *Detox/fasting diet: laxative taken nightly

  11. The Master Cleanse Benefits: *Short-term weight loss *Possibility that digestive tract gets to rest and recover *Spiritual experience *Overall, feel better due to less "poisons" (alcohol, junk food, etc.) Problems: *Lacking all of the essential nutrients *Calorie-deficient *Headaches, fatigue, dizziness, nausea, etc. *Lose water and muscle weight *No evidence that cleansing diets get rid of toxins

  12. Fad Diet #4: The Blood-Type Diet *Encourages eating and avoiding certain foods based on blood type- A, B, AB, O *Believes blood types: • -affect digestive system • -determine disease suseptibility • -predict appropriate exercise regimen *Image of being science-based since focused on blood types

  13. The Blood-Type Diet Type O: "Old"/ Humanity's oldest blood type -benefit from lean meats, poultry, & fish -restrict bread, grains, legumes -enjoy vigorous exercise Type A: "Agrarian" -benefit from vegetarian diet -should eat soy protein, legumes, and veggies -gentle exercise

  14. The Blood-Type Diet Type B: "Nomadic" -enjoy lean dairy, meat, and produce -avoid wheat, lentils, and corn -exercise moderately Type AB: "Modern Blood Type" -sensitive digestive tract -avoid chicken, beef, and pork -consume fish, tofu, dairy, and produce -do calming exercises

  15. The Blood-Type Diet PROS *Generally good diet recommendations within overall diet *Pushes generally healthy, unprocessed foods *Increases awareness of what you are eating CONS *Nutrient deficiencies are common *Exercise is healthy for practically everyone *Complicated to follow *NOT supported by solid evidence, science, or repeated research *Need a blood test if you do not your blood type

  16. Fad Diet #5: Atkins Diet a high protein, high fat, and low carbohydrate diet *Original Atkins Diet – 1981 • Phase 1: Restrictive Induction Phase • Max of 20 grams per day of carbohydrates • No fruit, starchy vegetables, grains, or breads • Phase 2: Ongoing Weight Loss Phase • Slowly increasing carbs by 5 grams/day • Phases 3&4: Maintenance Phase • Adding carbohydrates to the amount where weight is maintained

  17. *The New Atkins for a New You - 2010 • Due to negative press response • Emphasis on wholesome foods and healthy fats • Ideal for people with a busy lifestlye *New Atkins Made Easy - 2013 • Due to complaints of too much “guess work” • Provides step-by-step instructions • Shopping lists, diet tracking apps, and carb counting

  18. Pros and Cons of Atkins PROS *Previous success from diet *Quick results *Low-carb options at restaurants *Adapted for special dietary considerations *Many Atkins approved snacks are available in the grocery store • CONS • *Eating less than 130 grams of carbohydrates per day • brain function • *“Natural fat, even saturated fat, are vital to good health” • Saturated fat = heart problems • *Low in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains • Less vitamins, minerals, etc.

  19. Fad Diet #6: The Fat Belly Diet “Lost up to 15 pounds in 32 days and flatten your belly!” Based on the claim that there’s a link between monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs) and belly fat

  20. 2 Parts Part 1: 4 Day Anti-bloat Jumpstart *Avoid salt, salt-based seasonings, highly processed foods, excess carb foods (pasta, pizza, bread, pretzels), bulky raw foods, gassy foods (broccoli, cauliflower, legumes, peppers, citrus fruits), chewing gum, sugar alcohols, fried foods, spicy foods, carbonated drinks, alcohol, coffee, tea, hot cocoa, and fruit juice *Drink 2 liters daily of “Sassy Water”: Blend of ginger root, cucumber, lemon, and mint leaves *Provides 1,200 calories per day

  21. 2 Parts Part 2: 4 Week Eating Plan *3 Rules: • Eat 400 calories at each meal • Never go more than 4 hours without eating • Eat a MUFA at every meal *1,600 calories daily from 3 meals and 1 snack *Meal plans and snack ideas provided

  22. Pros and Cons of Flat Belly Diet PROS *Based on a healthy, mediterranean style meal plan *Good for on-the-go dieters: fast food options and meal replacements provided *Although it says you can do this without a “single crunch”, there is a chapter encouraging physical activity CONS *Only 2 calorie levels = not based on age, gender, height, activity level *Sudden stop of caffeine consumption *Misleading information that MUFAs are the success to weight loss *No scientific rationale for sassy water *Most weight loss is water weight

  23. Conclusion • Avoid diets/ products with the following claims: • *Rapid weight loss • should only lose ~1-2lb/week • *Quantities and limitations • can't eliminate an entire food group - missing critical nutrients • *Specific food combinations • no evidence that certain combos help weight loss • *Rigid menus • *No need to exercise • everyone should exercise for better overall health • 30 - 60 mins most days of the week • Learn more at the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetic’s website: