2014: Our year in trendy diets

Posted: December 28, 2014 at 2:51 pm

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When Google released its top trending search terms for 2014, the search engine invited us to peer into the abyss and ponder a terrifying question: what do these searches say about us? If the trending calorie searches tell us anything, its that Americans cant be trusted to feed ourselves. The list is split almost evenly between fruits/vegetables and junk food (how many calories in a Big Mac? alongside how many calories in an apple?) suggesting a binge-and-restrict approach that cant be good for our national health. But its the diet searches that reveal Americas love for a good lifestyle hack. While some old chestnuts wont diethe cheeseburger-no-bun Atkins Diet, the sensible and slightly romantic Mediterranean Dietmany of 2014s trendiest diets prove Americans love junk science almost as much as they love junk food. From co-opting Gwyneth Paltrows gluten sensitivity to injecting themselves with hormones, here are the most trendy ways we tried to reduce ourselves in 2014.

The Paleo Diet

This diet continued to have legsstrong, swift CrossFitted legsthis year because it promises that you can think like a lady (get that bikini body!) and eat like a caveman (all of the lard!). Paleo eaters get to eliminate dairy along with a lot of unnamed toxins and nebulously harmful contaminants (found in, I guess, beans?) while sounding virile, not fussyall thanks to evolutionary biology. The Paleo Diet claims to be a lifestyle diet that works with our genetics, not against them. Paleo looks to ancestral wisdomwhether from cave-dwelling Paleolithic ancestors or remote native populations untouched by Western diseasefor guidance on what to eat and how to live, says a basics article in Paleo Magazine. Its food spirituality for the recreational Krav Maga set, a way to give up gluten without taking up meditation.

Gluten-Free Diet

In the recent horse race of food sensitivities, real and imagined, gluten retained its lead this year. The practice of avoiding it has been co-opted from people with awful and inconvenient gastrointestinal disorders and severe allergies by those looking for a trendy yet science-y reason to avoid the bread basket in restaurants. While celiac disease patients are actually allergic to the wheat proteins, for trend-followers its also the next step in emulating Gwyneth Paltrows super-sensitive lifestyle brand.

The Military Diet

The Military Diet claims to be designed by top secret nutritionists at the U.S. military to get soldiers into tip top shape, which it does through a one-two punch of interval fasting and shame. According to the website, The people that fail on the Military Diet simply dont have the drive and determination that you do. They complain about hunger or low energy because they are used to eating way more calories in a day. Thats how they gained weight in the first place. The Military Diet involves eating the bare minimum of sad foods like hot dogs, cottage cheese, saltines and canned tuna for three days, then eating a reasonable amount of tasty foods on the four days off. In the interest of national security, top secret military nutritionists comments on the nutritional validity of hot dogs have been redacted.

The HCG Diet

Its hard to know where to start with this one. Named after a hormone the female body produces during pregnancy, the space-agey hCG Diet demands severe calorie restriction and daily injections of the hormone hCG, under the super-legit claim that itll help youll lose fat but not muscle. Who would have thought that if you restrict yourself to 500 calories a day, youd lose weight? Youll probably lose your hair, too. The pregnancy hormones are supposed to take care of those inconvenient pangs of hunger while you starve yourself. Thank the geniuses over at the Dr. Oz Show for publicizing it.

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2014: Our year in trendy diets

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Written by grays |

December 28th, 2014 at 2:51 pm