4 Health Risks of the Beverly Hills Diet

The Beverly Hills Diet was published in 1981. Its author, Judy Mazel, believes that undigested food turns to body fat, and that foods should be eaten in certain combinations and at certain times to avoid weight gain. Mazel’s theory doesn’t hold up, because food must be digested before it can be stored by the body as fat. The Beverly Hills Diet can lead to temporary weight loss, but it carries a number of risks as well.

1. Very Low in Calories

The Beverly Hills Diet is a very low calorie diet, allowing dieters only about 800 calories a day. Adults need at least 1300 calories a day to maintain a healthy weight. Following such a low calorie diet as the Beverly Hills Diet could cause hunger, faintness, dizziness, weakness and fatigue. The Beverly Hills Diet also puts dieters at risk of nutritional deficiency.

2. Theory Is Flawed

The Beverly Hills Diet is based on stringent food combination rules. Proteins must be eaten with proteins and fats, carbohydrates should be eaten with carbohydrates and fats, and fruits should be eaten alone. You’re only allowed to eat one type of fruit at a time, and you must wait an hour before eating another type of fruit. You’re allowed to eat carbohydrates two hours after eating fruit, and protein must only be eaten four hours after eating carbohydrates. 

Not only are these rules complicated and difficult to follow, but they espouse a theory that doesn’t make sense. Mazel believes that different foods can’t be eaten together at the same meal, or the foods won’t be digested and will be stored as body fat. However, food is always digested before it’s stored as body fat, and practicing food combining doesn’t offer any weight loss benefits. Experts believe that the weight loss Beverly Hills dieters experience is the result of severe calorie restriction.

3. Encourages Rapid Weight Loss

Most medical professional feel that weight loss should be gradual, and occur at a rate of one or two pounds per week. The Beverly Hills Diet promises 10 to 15 pounds of weight loss over a 35 day period. Such rapid weight loss can be dangerous, and it’s almost guaranteed you’ll regain the weight after you stop the diet.

4. Diet Isn’t Sustainable

The Beverly Hills Diet isn’t a sustainable weight loss program. The severe calorie restrictions alone make this diet impossible to maintain in the long term. If maintained at all, the low levels of fiber in the Beverly Hills Diet can cause constipation and more serious GI problems. Nutritional deficiency is a risk, as are high blood pressure and heart disease, since this diet contains high levels of protein and fat.

The Beverly Hills Diet doesn’t teach dieters about portion control, calorie counting or regular exercise, so you won’t learn how to maintain a healthy weight over the long term with this diet.


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