New fat-busting diet features red wine and chocolate on the menu – yes, really!
It must be too good to be true, surely?
Apparently not. We discover the science behind the ‘revolutionary’ Sirtfood Plan… Diet, schmiet.
As a nation, it’s not a word we want to murmur – let alone put into practice; so why do we continually tie ourselves to the concept?
“Not for me, thanks; I’m cutting down” is perhaps one of the most common phrases I hear, but it’s one that often translates into: “I won’t have that extra biscuit, but I will join you for a bottle of calorific wine later”.
It goes unsaid but there’s a mutual understanding that comes with dieting amongst friends: we pick and choose when we want to abide by the rules, so thou shall not judge and be judged!
Of course there are the serious dieters with much self control, but for many, we dream of instant results and sadly, crash dieting often becomes the norm. It’s human nature, but that doesn’t make it right…Bucking the trend.
When we consider taking on a diet, we often feel plagued by the idea of exclusion: what do we need to cut out? Which of our favourite foods must become the enemy? And that’s where the Sirtfood Diet’s ‘revolutionary’ plan claims to differ.
Aidan Goggins and Glen Matten – experts in nutritional medicine – have allegedly harnessed the power of Sirtfood science and are now sharing their findings in their book, The Sirtfood Diet, out in January 2016.
They explain Sirtfoods are a recently discovered group of plant foods, known as sirtuin activators, which switch on so-called ‘skinny gene’ pathways in the body. These are the same pathways more commonly activated by fasting and exercise – meaning they help the body burn fat, increase muscle, aid biological processes and stave off disease.
Foods in this bracket include kale, blueberries, citrus fruits, apples, onions, green tea, capers and, wait for it, red wine and dark chocolate. Tick and tick; although public health nutritionist and lifestyle consultant, Yvonne Wake, warns the “chocolate needs to be of high quality and consumed in moderation”.
As for red wine: “A small glass a few times a week is ok, but I wouldn’t recommend it every day as it will become a habit.” On trial With the aim to create a diet that’s affordable, easy to follow and simple to maintain, Goggins and Matten tested their diet on 40 members of one of Europe’s leading health clubs.
Their logic was, if they obtained good results with this relatively healthy sample, they could hope to achieve even greater gains with people starting from a lower base. The results showed an average of seven pounds of weight loss in seven days, with increases in muscle mass, wellbeing and energy.
Whilst Wake maintains “seven pounds in a week is way too much for health reasons”, the diet is – as anticipated – causing quite a stir in the celebrity world, with fans such as James Haskell, Lorraine Pascale and Jodie Kidd spreading the word.
“There is absolutely no fast track; the only way we can truly look after ourselves and be as slim and healthy as we need to be is by eating a wonderfully healthy, balanced diet and doing at least an hour of exercise a day – and that includes walking to the tube and back,” protests Wake. “I’m anti any fad diet and I’m anti anything that takes you away from making sure your daily intake is nutritious and contains all the right vitamins, minerals and trace elements. As long as you consume protein, carbohydrates, fibre and fresh vegetables daily, then why complicate it?”
Is there a shortcut when it comes to eating well?
It seems not: the diet isn’t cheating and encourages health eating, but the results remain to be seen.
The Sirtfood Diet: The revolutionary plan for health and weight loss is out in early January 2016.