Revive Reviews: The Beauty Detox Diet

Detox diets are very popular and we get asked about them all the time.  Which one is the best? Do I need to detox? How often should I detox? So we thought we would review a few popular detox/cleanses out there and give you our humble opinions/Dietitian’s perspective.

The first one I want to review is the Beauty Detox Solution by Kimberly Snyder.  This Detox Solution has become very famous and one many of the Hollywood Stars have tried.  Needless to say it has created a buzz.  So what is it all about?

Kimberly promotes an 80/20 rule where 80% of what you eat is vegetables and fruit and 20 % of your intake is from carbohydrates and protein.  Ideally animal protein should only be eaten once per day at dinnertime and eventually to limit it to 2-3 times per week.  Fish is better than land animals but she really feels plant based is the best.  Dairy is to be completely removed from the diet, as casein is hard to digest and she states that studies have linked consumption to autism and increased risk of prostate cancer risk.  Salt and alcohol should be limited.  You also need to take daily magnesium-oxygen supplements, digestive enzymes and probiotics to help eliminate toxins and keep your digestive tract clean.

Pros:

What I really like about Kimberly’s beauty detox is that she uses whole foods and encourages people to cut out the processed foods.  I also like her emphasis on increasing overall vegetable consumption and legumes and to decrease the intake of meat consumption.  Some of the healthy benefits associated with a vegetarian diet are decreased risk of obesity, cancer, heart disease and diabetes-which we are plagued with in North America and there is a great deal of robust scientific evidence to support this notion.

Cons:

I am very evidence based and like to make sure what I recommend to my clients has science to back it up. So when I was checking out the references Kimberly uses to make her statements about magnesium-oxygen supplements and dairy I struggle to come to same conclusion.  Randomized, control trials are the most robust type of research necessary to determine cause and effect.  I couldn’t find any in her book related to these matters.  While some people need supplements for special circumstances, people following this detox are eating significantly more vegetables than the average person and will be getting plenty of antioxidants.  So why is it necessary to take supplements?

As for the dairy, while there have been some studies looking at the link between dairy intake and prostate cancer risk, the studies seem to all say the same thing- increased intake of dairy increases risk of prostate cancer.  Increased intake means above what is recommended people consume.  Again, the best evidence so far is from prospective, observational studies and so I don’t support the statements made in the Beauty Detox Solution book regarding the complete ban.  I am neutral on whether people want to incorporate dairy, I support people who want to follow a balanced vegan diet without dairy or with other special conditions and I am also supportive of people who choose to consume it in moderation.

Kimberly recommends taking digestive enzymes and probiotics, which the general healthy individual eating a balanced diet already gets enough of. That being said a great deal of people aren’t eating a balanced diet.  The solution though is not to pop a pill but rather eat a balanced diet.

The argument that we should have our heaviest meal at night so our body has time to break it down and it doesn’t clog up our system is also questionable.  This goes against our natural circadian rhythm where our body wants to work during the day and sleep at night.  If you take a look at the extensive research done with people who work shift work and eat heaviest at night you will find that these groups have a higher rate of obesity, gastrointestinal disorders, acid reflux, chronic constipation and chronic fatigue.

Would a dietitian eat this way?

While I like the concept of eating 80% plant based diet, I am not interested in drinking the green glowing smoothie; I like eating food rather than drinking it for better satiety.That’s just me.

Kimberly’s recommendations are in some ways similar to how I eat, but I believe if we work at balancing our diet we can get all the necessary ingredients through whole foods (unless you have special diet needs due to disease or illness.) I am personally not interested in taking several supplements daily. While I could see this diet working for some it may be a bit extreme for the average person I work with.

May 16, 2013
Revive Wellness