It may seem like everyone you know has tried a detox diet lately. Although regimens vary, these diets generally involve a juice fast lasting days or weeks and often include a “cleanse” with limited food and/or “detoxifying” supplements. Serving up a small allotment of calories can produce dramatic weight loss, which makes detoxing tempting to typical dieters.
Melinda Manore is a professor in the department of nutrition and exercise sciences at Oregon State University. Her areas of expertise include integration of nutrition and physical activity for weight management, and prevention of chronic disease. Aside from authoring more than 100 scientific publications, book chapters and review articles, Manore has written four nutrition textbooks and two books for the Institute of Medicine’s Committee on Military Nutrition Research. Throughout her career, she has served on a number of nutrition and exercise editorial boards.
Public health attorney Michele Simon recently published an explosive indictment of the links between the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics—the largest association of nutrition professionals in the U.S.—and the food industry. In the report, titled “And Now a Word From Our Sponsors: Are America’s Nutrition Professionals in the Pocket of Big Food?,” Simon questions the influence and relationship that many leading food corporations have with the association’s 74,000 members.
Researchers in New Zealand were curious whether fast food could increase or decrease the risk of developing asthma, rhinoconjunctivitis (itchy, watery eyes, with sneezing and nasal itching) and eczema (inflammatory reaction of the skin) for children and adolescents.
By looking at the prevalence of these three conditions in comparison with types and frequencies of food intake over a 12-month period, the study authors discovered two things of significance for public health policies:
Can a poor diet predict depression in women? Perhaps. The American Society for Nutrition just published the results of a long-term study of 4,215 people that examined whether or not dietary patterns were associated with future risk of depressive symptoms. Using the Alternative Healthy Eating Index (AHEI), self-reported use of antidepressants and the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale as measurement tools, researchers found a correlation between recurrent depressive symptoms and a poor diet, but only for women, not men.
If you want to improve your energy metabolism and reduce body fat levels by up to 4%, try a daily dose of probiotic yogurt. According to the Journal of Functional Foods, 28 healthy, overweight people who ate yogurt that contained the probiotic strain Lactobacillus amylovorus or the strain Lactobacillus fermentum for 6 weeks experienced an increase in energy metabolism and a decrease in weight.