Various fad diets are doing the rounds in health and nutrition circuit. While some diets severely restrict food groups or nutrients, there are some that focus on holistic well-being of the body.
With a lot of celebrities personally endorsing and professing the effects of certain diets, one diet that has garnered the attention of many is sirtfood diet.
Popular singer Adele has managed to shock everyone with her incredible weight loss. The singer was photographed in her slimmer avatar while holidaying with Harry Styles and James Corden on the Caribbean island of Anguilla. A report in The Sun said Adele is a huge fan of the sirtfood diet plan, which could have played a determining role in her dramatic weight loss.
For those attempting to embark on a journey towards healthy living, the sirtfood diet could be a great alternative.
Here’s what a sirtfood diet is
The sirtfood diet is based on research on SIRTs or sirtuins. These are a group of seven proteins found in the human body that regulate functions like metabolism, inflammation and lifespan, according to a study conducted by Glenn Laboratory for the Science of Aging, Massachusetts.
The sirtfood diet works on the assumption that certain plant compounds may be able to increase level of these proteins. These plants are dubbed as sirtfoods.
A combination of sirtfoods along with calorie restriction could trigger the body to produce higher levels of sirtuins, leading to rapid weight loss, while maintaining muscle mass.
According to the authors of the sirtfood diet, Aidan Goggins and Glen Matten, “the diets of the slimmest, healthiest and longest lived populations around the world – known as Blue Zones – had previously shown that the one thing they had in common was they were always very rich in these precious plant nutrients,” which, according to them was due to their polyphenol content.
According to the founders, a small group could mimic the effects of fasting and exercise through activating our sirtuin (a.k.a ‘skinny’) genes leading to the formation of the sirtfood diet.
The science behind sirtfood diet
A study conducted by the Institute of Human Nutrition and Food Science, Christian-Albrechts University of Kiel in Germany found that a ‘MediterrAsian’ diet combining sirtfoods of the Asian as well as Mediterranean diet could be a good dietary strategy in preventing chronic diseases.
As per the study authors, this could ensure health and healthy ageing.
Also a collaborative study by the Institute of Health Science, Shanghai and Glenn Laboratory for the Science of Aging, Department of Biology, Massachusetts found that sirtuin proteins make the body burn more fat for energy and improve insulin sensitivity.
What would be the results if you ate a diet specifically rich in sirtfoods
After discovering that a small group could mimic the effects of fasting and exercise through activating sirtuin in the body, authors Aidan Goggins and Glen Matten pilot-tested it and found that participants lost, on an average 3.18 kg in 7 days, whilst either maintaining or even increasing their muscle mass.
How you can follow sirtfood diet at home
There are around 20 different foods, which can be categorised under the category of sirtfoods. These include kale, red wine, strawberries, onions, soy, parsley, matcha green tea, buckwheat, turmeric, walnuts, coffee etc.
The sirtfood diet is followed in two phases. The first phase consists of seven days and involves calorie restriction and consuming lots of juices. This is intended to jump-start weight loss and claims to help one lose around 3.2 kg.
Calorie intake during the first three days of this phase should be restricted to 1,000 calories. Phase two of the diet lasts two weeks, where one should eat three full meals full of sirtfoods and one green juice per day to continue with the weight loss programme.
Benefits of sirtfoods
Sirtfoods contain foods like dark chocolate, green tea and turmeric, all of which have benefits on the human body. A study, published in the Journal of Clinical Hypertension, found that high cocoa content may lower the risk of heart disease and help fight inflammation.
A study, published in the journal Molecules, found that turmeric has anti-inflammatory properties and may protect against chronic, inflammation-related diseases.
But before you jump on to the fad diet bandwagon, we recommend you to consult a certified nutritionist as each body type is different and the nutritional requirements vary.