Have you pledged to kick your new year off with an extreme diet, detox or cleanse? You may be doing more harm than good…
Thanks to celebrities such as Gwyneth Paltrow, Angelina Jolie and Beyonce Knowles, super-restrictive detox diets are more popular than ever – with dozens of books and websites spruiking strict regimens that claim to cleanse your system, flush poisons from your body, purge fat and increase energy. But many dietitians and medical experts say these diets are pointless at best, and dangerous at worst…
Hundreds of the nation's dietitians have voted on the three worst diets to avoid in the New Year. The Lemon Detox Diet was rated the worst, followed by the Acid and Alkaline Diet. The Six Weeks to OMG Diet rounded off the top three according to Australia's peak nutrition body, the Dietitians Association of Australia (DAA).
DAA Spokesperson and Accredited Practising Dietitian, Melanie McGrice, said, ”Don't put your health in the hands of celebrities-endorsed diets or products that make miraculous weight and fat-loss claims. Like many things in life, good health takes perseverance and commitment to a healthy lifestyle.”
“Start with small, sustainable changes like having more home-cooked meals and going for regular walks. Extreme diet measures are unnecessary and counterproductive,” she added.
Here are the top tips from Australia's nutrition experts how to ditch the diets in 2013:
1. Watch out for gimmicks or quick fixes. Being healthy takes time. If you're lost, see an Accredited Practising Dietitian for advice you can trust.
2. Everyone wants that miracle diet that solves all problems. The truth isn't sexy, but it works: A wholesome, nutritious, balanced diet.
3. Carbohydrates are essential for effective brain function. Low carbohydrate diets won't help you perform at your best.
4. Get half vegetables, one quarter carbohydrates and one quarter protein on your plate at breakfast, lunch and dinner.
5. No need to ban certain foods - you'll only crave them more. Plan small amounts of 'treat' foods into your week and take time to taste and enjoy them. Quality over quantity.
On the 20th January, DAA will launch its annual Australia's Healthy Weight Week campaign which this year urges 18-25 year old women to commit to looking and feeling their best.
Visit www.healthyweightweek.com.au for more info.