Just when you thought you’d never sip another juice, celery juice emerges as a magic elixir. Endorsed by celebrities, including Miranda Kerr and Leah Michele, celery juice is touted for its ability to help remove toxins from your body and stabilize blood pressure levels. And because it’s a rich source of magnesium, proponents say it helps boost energy and aids muscle recovery. But does the Hulk juice live up to its hype, or are we squeezing truth out of nothing?
“There’s little scientific evidence that proves the long-term health benefits of celery juice, but there have been many claims that people do feel better when it’s part of their daily routine,” says Keri Glassman, MS, RD, CDN, founder of Nutritious Life. Instead, Glassman recommends enjoying celery in a smoothie. “I’m a smoothie person—one for the fiber—but also to feel satiated and full until lunch. Juices are quick digesting and the sugars are quick to enter your bloodstream, leaving you feeling hungry soon after,” she adds.
If the pegan diet sounds like an oxymoron, it’s because it kind of is. Mark Hyman, MD, author of the forthcoming book, Food: What the Heck Should I Eat?, first coined the pegan diet, which he calls a mash-up of vegan and Paleo diets.
The pegan diet emphasizes a “clean” way of eating that includes plenty of vegetables and fruits, high-quality fats, little or no foods treated with pesticides, antibiotics and hormones, lean protein, and low-mercury fish. Sounds good, right? But the diet limits whole grains because they raise blood sugar levels, and dairy because it’s seen as inflammatory.
Glassman says that with any kind of diet, whether it’s pegan or not, is to be conscious of its deprivation. “If you’re prone to feeling ‘off’ or ‘on’ and struggle with yo-yo dieting, this [pegan diet] may not be for you,” Glassman explains. “I always say to use your hunger quotient as the number one measure of healthy eating. It allows the flexibility of choosing what you actually want to eat without having hard and fast rules on food groups or following macros,” she adds.
However, Jessica Levinson, MS, RDN, CDN, a New York-based culinary nutrition expert and author of 52-Week Meal Planner, says that restriction diets, like the pegan diet, just lead to overeating. “Grains, legumes, and dairy-containing foods, which are to be avoided or limited on a pegan diet, have important nutrients we need. That said, compared to a paleo or vegan diet individually, I do think the pegan diet is a healthier choice,” Levinson explains.
It’s not a surprise that low-carb diets make this list as hundreds of books around the keto diet were published in 2018. The diet has helped millions of people lose weight, but is it really good for you? Science doesn’t think so. According to an August 2018 study in Lancet—which followed more than 15,000 people for 25 years, those who eat a moderate amount of carbohydrates live an average four years longer than someone who eats a very low-carb diet. Moreover, U.S. News & World Report named the keto diet and Whole30 among the worst diets to follow in 2019.
Another 2018 study of nearly 25,000 participants from the European Society of Cardiology suggests that people who consume a low-carb diet have a 32 percent higher risk for premature death than those who eat a moderate amount of carbs. That’s because reducing your intake of carbs, which include vegetables and fruits, means depriving yourself of important nutrients and antioxidants.
While this 5,000 year-old diet isn’t anything new, the ancient practice, which originated in India, has recently become more popular because of its focus on mindful eating through Ayurvedic doshas. Doshas are personality types that correspond to different elements, including space, air, fire, water, and earth. For example, if you’re Vata, you’re creative, intense and expressive. The Ayurvedic diet recommends you work with an Ayurvedic doctor to identify your dosha, so you can start eating a diet that caters to it.