By Dr. Ro, America’s Nutrition Coach
There’s a new diet craze that’s so crazy I have to sound off. It’s called mono-meals because you eat just one — that’s right, one – food per meal. Think pineapple for breakfast, mango for lunch, or maybe two avocados for dinner, or get this – just bananas for the entire week!
The mono-meals fad assumes that eating one food at a time is easier to digest. Not so – contrary to this fad diet’s claim, your body does not require extra energy to digest more than one food. In fact, consuming a varied diet of wholesome, nutritious food that includes 50 percent colorful vegetables and fruits; 25 percent nuts, seeds, beans, eggs, with fish, chicken, turkey; and 25 percent unprocessed, whole, sprouted grains (think Ezekiel breads and cereals, quinoa, spelt) provides the full compliment of life-sustaining nutrition your body needs to get you through the day.
The mono-meals diet also claims to “detox, heal, and clean” your body’s internal organs. Nice try, but this claim reeks of trickery. Can you say “charlatan?” If your body needs a detox, your healthy liver jumps right on purging foreign substances pronto. That’s nature’s natural detox, created for your body to rid itself of the by products of too much alcohol, sugar, excess fat and other substances often found in the foods we consume, that are often highly processed. If your body ever needed an extra boost of detoxification from a highly processed diet, you are likely to find everything you’d need readily available in the produce section of your local supermarket in the form of fruits and vegetables. Toss a couple of handfuls of spinach, kale, even collards in a blender with a few chunks of pineapple, a thumb-sized piece of ginger, half of peeled lemon, add water and ice and call it a detoxed day.
Eating a single-food diet could also be a set up for nutritional deficiencies, namely protein, calcium, iron, zinc, vitamin D, and vitamin B12. But the process of eating in a way that includes combining protein and complex carbs in the same meal can be healthy and a boon to your weight-loss goals. It stabilizes your blood sugar and insulin levels, cuts cravings and helps you to eat less.
Mono-meals proponents maintain that eating one food at a time helps you to eat less. They say having one food in your mouth will make you fully appreciate when you’re full. What?
The fact is it takes 20 minutes for your stomach to send the message to your brain that you are full – no matter what you’re eating. Just slow down and viola! You actually eat less when you listen to your body. But you mustfeed your body. The mono-meals diet has been around for a long time, it’s not really new. It’s called a “Food Jag” – a typical food phase we nutritionists see in toddlers during the stage known as the “Terrible Twos,” when they eat just one food, say hot dogs, for weeks, but eventually grow out of it.
Bottom line? Your body needs a variety of nutrients, in the proper quantities, for normal bodily function. There is no single food that can do that on its own, hence every nutritionist’s recommendation to eat a variety of foods. That’s based on science – not a fad on social media.
Rovenia Brock, Ph.D. is a medical advisory board member and contributor to the “Dr. Oz Show,” where she helped more than a half-million Americans lose more than 5 million pounds. She is the author of “Dr. Ro’s Ten Secrets To Livin’ Healthy (Bantam). For more health, nutrition, and fitness tips, join Dr. Ro and her social media community and get a FREE Download of her new eBook of super-easy tips, “You Healthy and Happy” at www.everythingro.com. Twitter: @everythingro @DrRoShow.