The Mediterranean diet has officially pulled off a hat trick, being labelled the best diet by a panel of nutrition experts for the third year running.
The US News and World Report’s annual ranking of eating regimens judges by how easy each diet is to follow, its ability to produce short-term and long-term weight loss and its nutritional completeness.
It also takes a close look at the safety of the diet and its potential for preventing and managing diabetes and heart disease.
The science-backed eating style of one of the world’s most renowned ‘blue zones’ is characterised by heaps of vegetables, fruit, seafood and legumes, and smaller amounts of meat and dairy.
Plus, of course, those healthy fats in things like fish and olive oil.
Gold standard research has found that it contributes to a healthier heart, a lower risk of dementia and breast cancer, and longer life, a reduced risk for diabetes and high blood pressure.
In the rankings, the Mediterranean diet was once again followed by the DASH diet, the Flexitarian diet, the Weight Watchers diet.
The Mayo Clinic diet and MIND diet tied for fifth.
On the other end of the scale?
The increasingly popular ketogenic diet came in next to last in the ranking of 35 diets, just ahead of the Dukan diet.
Experts say no to Keto
“Although many books and websites tout a ketogenic diet for a wide range of health benefits, in reality the diet is backed by very limited evidence in healthy individuals,” Accredited Practising Dietitian and Spokesperson for the Dietitians Association of Australia, Nicole Dynan told Women’s Health.
However, the high-fat, low-carb eating method did rank highly in their round of fast weight loss diets.
“Following a ketogenic diet will undoubtedly result in short-term weight loss, which probably comes down to a reduction in kilojoule intake, the depletion of liver and muscle glycogen stores and associated water, and a reduced appetite caused by eating more satiating fat and protein-rich foods,” Dynan explained.
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“Though it may offer some metabolic benefits when followed in the short-term (a few months), and pose as a novel treatment for certain medical conditions, a ketogenic diet isn’t recommended for the general population, as the long-term efficacy and safety of the diet are unknown.”
In the video below, the overall best diets of 2019