Is this the healthiest diet in the WORLD?

Kristen Hong, a stay-at-home mother and blogger, first heard about the Nutritarian lifestyle in 2011 from family members.  

The 35-year-old, from Dublin, California, watched as her parents drastically transformed after following a modified version of the diet and decided she simply had to give it a go herself. 

Now, seven years on, the Hello Nutritarian founder feels better than she has in years, is 9.5 kilograms lighter and has no plans to ever return to a ‘non-Nutritarian’ way of life.

‘My parents had had watched Dr. Fuhrman [the founder of the Nutritarian diet] on television and had used a modified version of his plan (they still eat animal products) to lose weight and reverse pre-diabetes,’ Mrs Hong told FEMAIL. 

Kristen Hong, a stay-at-home mother and blogger, first heard about the Nutritarian lifestyle in 2011 from family members

Kristen Hong, a stay-at-home mother and blogger, first heard about the Nutritarian lifestyle in 2011 from family members

The 35-year-old, from Dublin, California, watched as her parents drastically transformed after following a modified version of the diet and decided she simply had to give it a go herself

The 35-year-old, from Dublin, California, watched as her parents drastically transformed after following a modified version of the diet and decided she simply had to give it a go herself

The 35-year-old, from Dublin, California, watched as her parents drastically transformed after following a modified version of the diet and decided she simply had to give it a go herself

‘My mother came to visit me about four months after adopting the diet and she looked better than I’d seen her in years – thinner, vibrant and younger looking. 

‘That’s when I immediately bought and read Eat to Live and made the decision to start the six week aggressive weight loss plan when my daughter was six months old.’

So what is the Nutritarian diet? 

‘The Nutritarian lifestyle is about eating a high-nutrient, un-processed, plant-based diet. We don’t count calories, focusing instead on eating more with the goal of one pound [453 grams] raw and one pound cooked veggies daily,’ Mrs Hong said. 

Now, seven years on, the Hello Nutritarian founder feels better than she has in years, is 9.5 kilograms lighter and has no plans to ever return to a 'non-Nutritarian' way of life

Now, seven years on, the Hello Nutritarian founder feels better than she has in years, is 9.5 kilograms lighter and has no plans to ever return to a 'non-Nutritarian' way of life

Now, seven years on, the Hello Nutritarian founder feels better than she has in years, is 9.5 kilograms lighter and has no plans to ever return to a ‘non-Nutritarian’ way of life

'The Nutritarian lifestyle is about eating a high-nutrient, un-processed, plant-based diet. We don't count calories, focusing instead on eating more with the goal of one pound [453 grams] raw and one pound cooked veggies daily,' Mrs Hong said

'The Nutritarian lifestyle is about eating a high-nutrient, un-processed, plant-based diet. We don't count calories, focusing instead on eating more with the goal of one pound [453 grams] raw and one pound cooked veggies daily,' Mrs Hong said

‘The Nutritarian lifestyle is about eating a high-nutrient, un-processed, plant-based diet. We don’t count calories, focusing instead on eating more with the goal of one pound [453 grams] raw and one pound cooked veggies daily,’ Mrs Hong said

How does the Nutritarian diet work?  

‘Nutritarian’ is a word that Dr Joel Fuhrman coined to describe an eating style that is nutrient-dense and plant-rich, and includes a full portfolio of anti-cancer superfoods. 

These foods – green vegetables, fruits, colorful vegetables, beans, onions, mushrooms, fruit, berries, nuts and seeds – supply both the right amount of macronutrients (protein, fat and carbohydrates) and the vital micronutrients (vitamins, phytochemicals and minerals) that unleash the body’s incredible power to heal itself, slow the aging process, and refuel itself with renewed vitality.

A Nutritarian diet avoids concentrated sweeteners, salt, oil, and highly processed foods. They clam ‘it’s the diet style that maximally slows aging and promotes lifespan’. As such, Dr Fuhrman says ‘it’s the most therapeutic diet style to reverse disease and maintain your ideal weight’.

Eat as much as you want: 

* all raw vegetables (goal 500 grams)

* cooked green and non-green nutrient-rich vegetables (goal: 500 grams)

* beans, legumes, bean sprouts, and tofu (goal: one cup)

* fresh fruit (min. four daily)

Limit:   

* cooked starchy vegetables and whole grains (max. one cup)

* raw nuts and seeds 

* avocado 

* dried fruit (max two tbsp.)

* ground flaxseeds (max one tbsp.)

Do not eat:   

* dairy, meat/animal products, between-meal snacks, fruit juice, oils, added salt

Source: Dr Fuhrman  

‘We don’t eat sugar, excessive salt or oil and choose intact healthy fats instead (like avocado, raw nuts and seeds) and we strive to eat greens, beans, onions, mushrooms, and berries daily.’

When Mrs Hong first started the diet it was a challenge as her entire body reacted to the shock of such a drastic lifestyle change. 

‘It was extremely difficult. I started with the six week plan having no idea how I would survive and having no recipes that I truly liked,’ she said. 

‘In the beginning everything tasted gross – my tastebuds were literally detoxing from the hyper-tastes of man-made, chemical flavorings and the loads of added sugar and salt we typically find with processed foods.

Mrs Hong transformed both inside and out after adopting the lifestyle 

Mrs Hong transformed both inside and out after adopting the lifestyle 

Mrs Hong transformed both inside and out after adopting the lifestyle 

'I was a big time snacker before starting the plan and it was hard to break that habit and learn to eat three meals a day instead,' she said 

'I was a big time snacker before starting the plan and it was hard to break that habit and learn to eat three meals a day instead,' she said 

‘I was a big time snacker before starting the plan and it was hard to break that habit and learn to eat three meals a day instead,’ she said 

‘I was a big time snacker before starting the plan and it was hard to break that habit and learn to eat three meals a day instead.’

Mrs Hong experienced frequent headaches and low energy as she transitioned through what was essentially a detox period.

‘The other challenging aspect was having to double and sometimes triple cook my meals. My then three-year-old, six-month-old and hubby were not eating Nutritarian.’

Mrs Hong said she lost just over three kilos in the first week – a result that motivated her to keep going. 

'A month in my overall moods were happier and by the 42nd day I was over 21 pounds lighter and feeling better than I ever had in all my life,' she said

'A month in my overall moods were happier and by the 42nd day I was over 21 pounds lighter and feeling better than I ever had in all my life,' she said

‘A month in my overall moods were happier and by the 42nd day I was over 21 pounds lighter and feeling better than I ever had in all my life,’ she said

Mrs Hong, who has a following of more than 50,000 on Instagram thanks to her incredible food and fridge snaps said that while she is now committed to the plan for life, she did cheat s little in the early days

Mrs Hong, who has a following of more than 50,000 on Instagram thanks to her incredible food and fridge snaps said that while she is now committed to the plan for life, she did cheat s little in the early days

Mrs Hong, who has a following of more than 50,000 on Instagram thanks to her incredible food and fridge snaps said that while she is now committed to the plan for life, she did cheat s little in the early days

‘My energy and focus started to increase during the 2nd and 3rd weeks. A month in my overall moods were happier and by the 42nd day I was over 21 pounds lighter and feeling better than I ever had in all my life,’ she said. 

‘I had increased energy, wasn’t fixated on food, and had clearer thinking and focus. After experiencing that state of being I realised that I had found the lifestyle I wanted to live for the rest of my life.’

Mrs Hong, who has a following of more than 50,000 on Instagram thanks to her incredible food and fridge snaps said that while she is now committed to the plan for life, she did cheat s little in the early days.   

‘After my first six weeks I did cheat. My first non-Nutritarian meal was sushi and the salt from the soy sauce actually made my feet swell (that had never happened to me before),’ she said. 

What are Mrs Hong’s top tips for meal prepping?  

1. Make it automatic, a non-negotiable thing that you do every week, even if you can only get one or two things prepped in a given session. Habits create lifestyles.

2. Invest in glass food storage. My favorite prepping containers are canning jars in different sizes. I also have a few sets of good-quality snaplock containers. Glass containers makes all your food and produce last longer in the fridge.

3. Start small and let it grow. You don’t have to just ‘poof’ become a prepper overnight. Start with one small area and perfect that over a month or two before layering more on.

4. Prioritise your preps, especially in the beginning. Start with the preps that will give you the most ‘bang for your buck’ so to speak. For me that is always making an in-fridge salad bar. Since I eat 2 salads daily, being able to easily assemble a salad from my fridge is a top-priority prep.

5. If you can’t prep, chop! If the thought of doing all your cooking in one day feels daunting to you, just chop your fruits and veggies for the week. Having produce chopped and diced makes cooking during the week way more manageable. I call it ‘batch chopping’.

‘I went back on the plan for the next three months then gradually started adding back in oil and salt and some processed foods.

‘For those first three years I treated being Nutritarian as a diet rather than my forever-lifestyle and it wasn’t until I got serious about weekly food prepping that I was finally able to develop the habits I needed to make this my full-time way of living.’

Mrs Hong said that now when she does eat ‘off plan’ it will be at a vegan restaurant. 

I always try to get the most nutrient-dense option but the dishes are inevitably cooked with oil and salt – though there are quite a few places I’ve found that will use less oil or no oil upon request,’ she said. 

'It's been over a five year process but I'm at such a good place in my life now really recovering from my life long struggle with binge eating and overeating,' she said 

'It's been over a five year process but I'm at such a good place in my life now really recovering from my life long struggle with binge eating and overeating,' she said 

‘It’s been over a five year process but I’m at such a good place in my life now really recovering from my life long struggle with binge eating and overeating,’ she said 

'I dedicate time to chopping and assembling my daily salads, making oil-free dressings and sauces in my Vitamix, making a large pot of soup and a double-batch of roasted veggies for the week,' she said

'I dedicate time to chopping and assembling my daily salads, making oil-free dressings and sauces in my Vitamix, making a large pot of soup and a double-batch of roasted veggies for the week,' she said

‘I dedicate time to chopping and assembling my daily salads, making oil-free dressings and sauces in my Vitamix, making a large pot of soup and a double-batch of roasted veggies for the week,’ she said

‘I have a glass of wine during the holidays and actually prefer my non-sugar, date-sweetened Nutritarian desserts to the typical cookies and cakes I would eat during Thanksgiving, Christmas and birthdays.

‘It’s been over a five year process but I’m at such a good place in my life now really recovering from my life long struggle with binge eating and overeating.’

Mrs Hong meal preps two to three hours each week on a Sunday. 

‘I dedicate time to chopping and assembling my daily salads, making oil-free dressings and sauces in my Vitamix, making a large pot of soup and a double-batch of roasted veggies for the week,’ she said. 

'The response to my weekly prepped fridges has been amazing and I'm so happy to know that they've inspired so many to adopt a Nutritarian lifestyle and start prepping for themselves' She said

'The response to my weekly prepped fridges has been amazing and I'm so happy to know that they've inspired so many to adopt a Nutritarian lifestyle and start prepping for themselves' She said

‘The response to my weekly prepped fridges has been amazing and I’m so happy to know that they’ve inspired so many to adopt a Nutritarian lifestyle and start prepping for themselves’ She said

What are Mrs Hong’s tips for an organised fridge?  

1. Keep things visible. You want to be able to open your fridge and be able to easily identify your next 3 meals. You want eating on-plan to be automatic and there’s no easier way of making that happen than keeping meals in plain view.

2. Revamp your condiments. This is where your fridge can feel the most cluttered and you’ll find the most expired products. I advise my readers to look at those condiment labels and ingredients and edit out any that aren’t serving your healthy lifestyle. Create the habit of making 1 homemade condiment a week like this oil-free hummus.

3. Know when to clean. I like to wipe down my fridge on my food prep days. Then I do a deeper clean each quarter and every time we are going to be out of town for a week or more.

‘The response to my weekly prepped fridges has been amazing and I’m so happy to know that they’ve inspired so many to adopt a Nutritarian lifestyle and start prepping for themselves!

‘I think absolutely everyone should try it at least once in their life! It’s a doable commitment to follow the Nutritarian plan for six weeks so they can see for themselves how it feels and how it restores their body.’ 

While many have praised the results of the lifestyle, health experts are divided. 

'I think absolutely everyone should try it at least once in their life! It's a doable commitment to follow the Nutritarian plan for six weeks so they can see for themselves how it feels and how it restores their body,' she said 

'I think absolutely everyone should try it at least once in their life! It's a doable commitment to follow the Nutritarian plan for six weeks so they can see for themselves how it feels and how it restores their body,' she said 

‘I think absolutely everyone should try it at least once in their life! It’s a doable commitment to follow the Nutritarian plan for six weeks so they can see for themselves how it feels and how it restores their body,’ she said 

Mrs Hong often themes her fridges by colours and cuisines 

Mrs Hong often themes her fridges by colours and cuisines 

Mrs Hong often themes her fridges by colours and cuisines 

The Australian Dietitians Association has warned those who do adopt a vegan diet to ensure they are getting enough iron, B12, calcium and omega-3 fats from other sources and suggests people consider seeking advice and support from an Accredited Practising Dietitian (APD) with a special interest in this area.

Nutritionist Lyndi Cohen is also not convinced if the diet and told the Sydney Morning Herald previously that it can ‘lead followers towards an ‘extreme’ form of ultra-virtuous and possibly obsessive eating’.

Instead she recommends ‘picking and choosing’ the best bits of the diet like ‘counting nutrients instead of calories, and eating more plant-based food’. 

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