Detox, fasting, or rather a low carb? There are many diets, but not all of them are healthy. With this diet traffic light, we provide guidance.
Mediterranean diet – the best in the world
Every year, a panel of American nutrition experts chooses the best diets in the world. The Mediterranean diet (also known as the Mediterranean diet) performed best this year. Both in the overall ranking of the U.S. News & World Report and five of the eight subcategories, it is number one.
Why it is like that? Spanish researchers found that a Mediterranean diet with fresh vegetables, fish, fruit, nuts, and olive oil has a positive impact on the risk of heart attack and stroke. Another study showed that the Mediterranean diet also reduces the risk of type 2 diabetes.
Weight Watchers – lose weight under control
The well-known diet is based on a points system. In small steps, this encourages the consumer to consume foods rich in fiber and protein. In several studies, researchers have already shown that Weight Watchers can lead to a weight loss of three to five kilos in overweight people – measured over 12 months.
Since the diet is based on a mixed diet, which, unlike many other diets, ensures the nutrient supply in the long term, Weight Watchers can also be used over a long period without any health risk, according to the German Society for Nutrition (DGE). Good to know: If you want to follow the diet, you have to become a paid member of Weight Watchers.
Intermittent fasting as a healthy alternative to other diets
As one of the most popular diets, intermittent fasting has a good reputation. Regular and controlled fasting is said to improve metabolic health, reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as high blood pressure or type 2 diabetes and improve memory. The first studies have proven the effect, but there are still no long-term studies.
However, researchers at Heidelberg University Hospital have concluded that intermittent fasting has just as positive an effect on health as conventional weight loss with a balanced diet. What speaks for intermittent fasting: Some people find it easier “to be very disciplined for two days instead of restricting themselves every day,” says Tilman Kühn, scientific director of the study.
DASH – the relaxed diet for heart and circulation
The DASH diet (DASH = Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) is particularly recommended for people with high blood pressure. It should permanently reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke in people with high blood pressure and those who have a predisposition to hypotension. For this purpose, the diet is changed with targeted measures to reduce the consumption of sodium, saturated fats, and cholesterol. Weight loss is considered a pleasant side effect.
According to a US study, the DASH diet should also prevent depression. But diet is not for everyone.
Healthy people, athletes, and children are completely discouraged from the DASH diet. People with low blood pressure as well as pregnant and breastfeeding women should seek medical advice beforehand.
Do not overdo clean eating – what you should pay attention to
Superfoods and fresh regional cuisine instead of fast food and industrially manufactured finished products? Clean eating seems to appeal to young women in particular. But doctors like the British doctor Dr. Max Pemberton warn against an overly strict and dogmatic approach. Malnutrition and eating disorders can be the result.
Anyone who eats a clean and balanced diet should be able to benefit from their health. But superfoods are expensive and often have to be flown in from overseas. Chia seeds can also be replaced with flaxseeds and moringa with kale. And instead of goji berries, blueberries can be an alternative. According to Julia Fischer from the Association for Independent Health Advice, these local products represent an “exchangeable” source of nutrients, are cheaper, and have a more favorable climate balance than the hyped superfoods.
Detox diet – for whom a detox cure is suitable
Lemon juice, raw vegetables, and water are some of the most popular recommendations for the detox diet due to their health benefits. But the German Society for Nutrition (DGE) warns: A detoxification regimen that is too strict can lead to nutrient deficiencies, for example in the area of proteins or fatty acids. In addition, many juices or smoothies would provide energy, but often contain little fiber and hardly fill you up.
Experts advise children, adolescents, and pregnant and breastfeeding women against detoxification. Even people with impaired kidney function should not follow a detox diet.
Whether a detox cure helps the detoxification organs and can balance the acid-base balance in the body is controversial among researchers. Many of those who swear by detox at least report that they feel good and subjectively perceive an improvement in their quality of life. However, this can also be because detox cures often also include wellness treatments such as massages, baths, or yoga, which have been proven to have a positive effect on well-being.