Wellness

These 5 bizarre diet fads are going to be huge in 2018

By Oliver Smith 11 January 2018
Gwyneth Paltrow launched lifestyle brand Goop in 2008. Image: Jared Siskin/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images.
Summary

Sorry, common sense.

It’s a New Year, which means millions of us are turning a page with a new health regime.

Unfortunately the wellness, food and health industries are all well aware of your hankering for change, and are more than happy to deliver.

From the normal to the entirely abnormal, the celebrity faves to the tech crazes, 2018 is bringing some rather odd food fads.

Here are 5 of the weirdest that you’ll be hearing all about this year:

Chef Tom Kerridge came up with the 'dopamine diet' concept. Image: Chris Jackson/Getty Images.

1. The dopamine diet

Weirdness factor: 2/10

Michelin star chef Tom Kerridge spilt the secrets to his dramatic 12 stone weight loss in his 2017 ‘dopamine diet’ cookbook, but his recent small screen debut on the BBC’s Lose Weight For Good has shone further light on the concept.

It’s all about happiness.

The basic gist is to feature ingredients which release the ‘happy hormone’, like bananas, dairy and Mmm… dark chocolate.

By dumping alcohol and starchy carbs, the promise is that you’ll be able to eat delicious meals, like spinach, bacon and mint soup or chocolate mousse with sesame almond biscuits, while still shifting the pounds.

We’re feeling happier already.

Hugh Jackman popularised "16-8" fasting after his training for Wolverine. Image: Ray Tamarra/GC Images.

2. Circadian rhythm fasting

Weirdness factor: 5/10

The “16-8” is probably the most well-known of the circadian rhythm fasts.

It was first popularised by Hugh Jackman, who adopted it to shed pounds during his training for Wolverine, and further boosted in Silicon Valley last year by Digg founder Kevin Rose, when he launched a circadian rhythm fasting app.

The circadian rhythm is your body’s natural 24-hour cycle, dictated by the sun’s rising and falling, and in recent years diets based on our body’s internal clock have been growing in popularity.

Rather than trying to change what you eat, these are focused on shifting when you eat.

The principle is that you can eat whatever you want during an 8-hour window, and then fast for the remaining 16-hours.

In practice, that means you eat lunch, have an early dinner (7pm) and then consume nothing but water until lunch the following day’s lunch… 16 hours later.

Our stomachs are grumbling already.

Woman smiling drinking water. Image: Getty/ Tom Merton
Woman smiling drinking water. Image: Getty/ Tom Merton

3. Raw water

Weirdness factor: 8/10

Fearful of the fluoride and “birth control drugs” that public water supplies supposedly contain, Silicon Valley-types like Juicero founder Doug Evans are taking drastic measures.

‘Raw’ water comes from natural sources, but is entirely untreated leaving it ‘pure’ – if you call parasites, bacteria and farmland chemicals ‘pure’.

Some are even eschewing solid food entirely with 5-day raw water fasts.

We’ve yet to see an outbreak of illness or disease caused by the practice of drinking raw water, but health experts agree that it’s only a question of time.

We definitely don’t recommend this.

Read more: What The Heck Is Raw Water?

Image: Getty/SolStock.

4. The DASH diet

Weirdness factor: 1/10

DASH (which stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) is going to be the diet of 2018, so the rankings of the US National Institutes of Health Nutritionists.

It encourages you to reduce the sodium in your diet and eat potassium, calcium and magnesium-rich foods which lower blood pressure and therefore treat hypertension.

Think more fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean protein, with less saturated fat, sugary beverages, sweets, full-fat dairy and some oils.

DASH is probably the least likely to leave your gut in distress but, as with all these diets, proceed with caution.

Gwyneth Paltrow launched Goop in 2008. Image: Jared Siskin/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images.

5. Coffee enemas

Weirdness factor: 10/10

Caffeinated-foods are all the rage, but Gwyneth Paltrow’s lifestyle brand Goop took this trend too far this week with its own bizarre suggestion.

Squirting coffee where the sun doesn’t shine.

Technically not a diet, but Goop’s “beauty and wellness detox guide” for January suggests a coffee enema might just be exactly what the doctor ordered – as promoted by Goop’s go-to digestive health expert Dr Alejandro Junger.

He suggests the $135 Implant O’Rama might be the best place to start, an at-home kit for the pumping of (cold?) coffee.

Junger is even a regular user of this nutty device, writing in 2012: “Found this Enema kit that is more like a colonic kit. I have been doing coffee enemas for the last 3 days with it and it is SENSATIONAL.”

Really this shouldn’t come as any surprise. Goop was already a joke before it started pushing coffee enemas, its previous idiotic recommendations include vaginal steaming, urinating in the shower, and cooking with “sex dust”.

We give up.

Did we miss a nutty diet that you’ve heard about (or are following) in 2018? Drop us a line and let The Memo know.