by Beth Sobol | Fri., Sep. 23, 2016 11:15 AM
When it comes to dropping weight, celebs have been known to try almost anything—but that doesn't mean you should.
Which of the latest diet trends actually make sense for us everyday folk? To find out, we enlisted the help of celebrity fitness expert Latreal Mitchell (whose hard-bodied clients include Michael Strahan, Mekhi Phifer and Annasophia Robb) to debunk five new popular diets and determine which could actually help you lose weight healthily and which might be a waste of time.
The Idea: Going off the premise that your body is healthier in an alkaline state, the plan includes foods that promote alkaline production (most fruits and vegetables, tofu, soy, nuts and seeds) and avoiding ones that produce acid (meat, wheat, refined sugar, dairy). Oh, and some followers frown on booze and caffeine as well.
Expert Says: "It gets a thumbs-up from me," notes Mitchell. "It has you avoiding sugar, alcohol and processed foods, which is what you should do to maintain a healthy lifestyle." That said, she adds: "The average person might find this challenging because a lot of the foods you can't have—like potatoes, sugar, certain meats and dairy products—are so common. If you want to learn more, I would recommend the book The Acid Alkaline Diet by Felicia Drury Kliment. It has a lot of information about how acid waste contributes to many diseases and common ailments." You can also read our primer on the diet here.
Final Analysis: "This is a challenging diet for most, but I'm not opposed to it."
Allan Bregg / Splash News
The Idea: Long story short: If the caveman didn't eat it, neither can you. Only food that was available during pre-historic times is permitted, including meats, nuts, leafy greens, fish, vegetables and seeds. On the no-no list: almost everything else, including grains, dairy and legumes.
Expert Says: "I'm not a fan," explains Mitchell. "I find it hard to believe that anyone can stay away from carbs for a prolonged period of time. Personally, when I eat a high protein diet, I want to chew my hands off from being so hungry. I love carbohydrates but the good ones like yams, brown rice, quinoa, etc.
Final Analysis: "It's not horrible, but it's not for everyone."
Developed by physician Dr. Robert C. Atkins, the Atkins plan is split into four different phases, starting you off with a high fat, high-protein, low-carbohydrate diet, then gradually adding nuts, fruits, vegetables and healthy carbs back in. Foods to avoid on Atkins: sugar, grains, vegetable oils, starches and legumes.
Expert Says: While Atkins definitely has its following, Mitchell is skeptical. "Is it sustainable? I've seen people yo-yo on high-protein diets because once they start adding carbohydrates back in, they blow up. And not because of the carbohydrates themselves, but because they've deprived themselves for so long, they binge eat. And do you ever want to poop again? Because when you eliminate fiber, fresh fruit and good carbs, you will definitely get constipated."
Final Analysis: "This plan does not incorporate working out, and the diet is not something most people will sustain long-term."
The Idea: This name is pretty self-explanatory. Just eat as healthy as possible 80 percent of the time with foods like vegetables, fruits, nuts whole grains and lean protein. The other 20 percent you can treat yourself—as long as you don't go overboard.
Celeb Fans: Olivia Munn
Expert Says: "I'm totally on board with this," Mitchell exclaims. "I don't look at it as a diet; I look at it as a lifestyle. You're not waiting for ‘cheat' days, you've living your life and making the right choices most of the time. Once my clients reach their fitness goals and their bodies are in fat-burning mode, not fat-storage mode, I totally get them on the 80/20 rule."
Final Analysis: "Kudos to people who aren't starving their bodies of the nutrients it needs and making better choices 80 percent of the time!" Read our first-hand experience on the diet here.
The Idea: According to its website, it's a tea composed of detoxifying organic herbs — including organic green tea, Oolong Wu Yi, Garcina Cambogia extract, pomegranate, organic Rooibos, ginger, Stevia and honey — that promote weight loss, so long as a healthy diet and exercise plan is also part of the regimen.
Celeb Fans: Ashley Benson, Kylie Jenner
Expert Says: "Newsflash, the benefits of tea are not new. The Fit Tea Detox takes green tea, which is a great antioxidant/natural fat-burner and Oolong tea, which helps speed up your metabolism. Add some Garcina Cambogia extract, which is a natural appetite suppressant, ginger to aid with digestion, Stevia and honey and you have Fit Tea. But you can also make this at home and receive all the same benefits. Drink lots of tea and less crap like soda and Red Bulls and you'll slim down too."
Final Analysis: "Do I think tea is great? Absolutely. Is it a groundbreaking new weight loss remedy? No." We tried it and agree!
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