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Are these celebrity diets healthy?

The lives and happenings of celebrities intrigue many. The magazine headlines at the grocery check out are brain candy that fascinate us, including how the celebs eat. Let’s look at some celebrity diets and find out if the stars are onto something when it comes to health and weight.

The Raw Vegan Diet

The raw vegan diet is a style of eating that not only forbids any animal products, it requires them to be uncooked. Let’s review the definition of vegan: someone who does not eat or use animal products. This means no meat, eggs, dairy, fish, or less obvious meat-containing foods made with animal products – like Jell-O because the gelatin is made from animal cartilage and bone. It is rumored that Sting and Gwyneth Paltrow have followed this strict regimen of uncooked meatless cuisine.

Pros

Eating vegan can help create mindfulness around food that might not have otherwise been there. It is near impossible for a vegan to passively or mindlessly grab some food like many of us do on our lunch break, at happy hour, or in front of the TV. Because of the need to ensure what they are about to eat is animal-free, being vegan requires a level of intention (or mindfulness).

Fruits and vegetables are packed with healthy vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber. Raw, uncooked produce that has had no heat applied fully retains its nutrients without any lost in the cooking process.

Cons

It can be extremely difficult to consume enough calories when eating only raw food. This is why the raw vegan diet has been called “The Starvation Diet”. Too few calories is not good for the metabolism. When underfed, our bodies get nervous about food sufficiency and adapt to the decreased, inadequate amount of calories by lowering the metabolism.

The other noticeable and very important flaw in the raw vegan diet is this: we are perfectly able to digest cooked food AND the nutrient loss in cooking is minuscule. There is nothing impure or inferior about eating roasted, baked or stir-fried vegetables. Our digestive systems have zero problem breaking down, absorbing, and benefiting from the nutrients in cooked food. Interestingly, many recipes on Gwyneth Paltrow’s website, Goop, has recipes using meat and heat, including slowcooking.

Meal planning is an absolute must if choosing to eat raw vegan. It not only requires a serious amount of time spent forecasting the week’s menu – as in each meal and every snack – it also requires becoming familiar with vegan products like tahini, nutritional yeast, and tempeh.

Next Up: The Alkaline Diet

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