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Review: The Eat-Clean Diet

You may have heard of a new dieting trend, the Eat-Clean Diet by Tosca Reno, that promises to keep you feeling great and full of energy. Cooper Clinic Co-Director of Nutrition, Kathy Miller, RD, LD, took a closer look at this diet and assessed the pros and cons to “eating clean.”

What Is It?
The Eat-Clean Diet encourages unprocessed, whole foods only. This includes fruits, vegetables, lean meats and whole grains. Dieters should avoid artificial ingredients, preservatives, saturated fat, trans fat and sugar. Reno also encourages dieters to eat five to six small meals a day containing 200-300 calories per meal—all helping to control portions. Dieters may cheat once a week with something like a piece of dark chocolate or glass of red wine.

The plan focuses on controlling calories and maintaining regular exercise. Renoenforces not skipping meals, drinking eight cups of water a day and avoiding juices and alcohol among those listed above.

Kathy’s Pros

  • The plan is based on fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean meats. At Cooper Clinic, we view these foods as the cornerstone of healthy eating.
  • The five to six meals a day equal 1,200-1,800 calories per day. This number is within the range of calories we recommend for weight loss. Also, the meals focus on portions, not calories. Portion control is always encouraged.
  • Olive oil, nuts and avocados are listed as healthy fats to consume.
  • The plan encourages exercise. We have long known and proven that healthy diet combined with exercise leads to a healthy, longer life.

Kathy’s Cons

  • The plan excludes all saturated fats. This is extremely difficult to accomplish.
  • The plan excludes all white flour, sugar, juices and alcohol. It’s unrealistic to stay in those strict guidelines. We focus on making a diet work for the individual and their lifestyle.
  • The plan allows a once-a-week cheat meal or snack. Again, it’s hard to follow this in a social setting or when dining out without bringing a pre-packed meal.

Overall, the Eat-Clean Diet seems healthy and offers great tips for losing weight or maintaining a healthy weight.

Kathy recommends American Dietetic Association spokeswoman Roberta Anding’s, MS, RD review of the Eat-Clean Diet. See her remarks here.

Note: Kathy Miller has not read the Eat-Clean Diet

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