The last three diets for 2022

Dear readers,

Last week, we discussed US News’ ranking of the top three diets for overall health, so it seems balanced to review the bottom three this week. A panel of nutrition experts rated the diets based on seven categories: ease of following, ability to produce short- and long-term weight loss, nutritional completeness, safety, and potential to prevent and manage diabetes and heart disease (1).

The AIP (Autoimmune Protocol) and Whole30 diets tied for 35th out of 39 spots. AIP targets foods that may increase inflammation in people with an autoimmune disease, such as lupus or rheumatoid arthritis. Pro-inflammatory foods are eliminated and then gradually reintroduced into the diet to target specific foods that cause symptoms. Although the expert panel suggested this diet might be worth trying if you have an autoimmune disease, it scored low overall due to its restrictive nature and the need for research. additional scientists.

The claim of the Whole30 diet, although lacking in scientific evidence, is that our modern, industrialized food production is the cause of many health problems. Alcohol, grains, dairy products, legumes and sugar are eliminated for 30 days in this diet. On day 31, you start adding foods to your diet so you can identify which ones are causing digestive upset (2).

The keto and modified keto diets tied for the 37th best diet. Keto is a high-fat, low-carb diet. This diet allows for rapid weight loss initially, and many claim not to feel hungry. Since you are consuming very few carbohydrates, your body’s preferred source of energy, your body enters a state of ketosis where it depends on fat for energy. Fat is not broken down efficiently in the absence of carbs, producing ketones in the process. Hence the name keto.

The modified keto diet is slightly lower in fat and allows for slightly more carbs each day. These changes make the diet easier to follow than regular keto.

The Dukan and GAPS diets bring up the rear. The Dukan diet was created by French doctor Pierre Dukan. Its premise is that eating protein helps people lose weight, so on this diet you eat lots of meat with non-starchy vegetables. It promises rapid weight loss initially, and once you hit your goal, slowly add bread, cheese, and fruit back to your meal plan (3).

The GAPS (Gut and Psychology Syndrome) diet eliminates foods in an effort to detoxify the body. GAPS is a term coined by Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride, who believes that if problematic foods are eliminated, the gut lining can heal. She believes there is a direct link to gut and brain health. Although the diet may have positive digestive benefits, scientific research does not support its claims.

Dear Dietitian does not recommend any of the above diets for weight loss or better health. Please consult your doctor before starting a new diet.

Until next time, be healthy!

Dear Dietitian

The references

1. Best Diets in the United States: How We Rated 35 Diets (2020, January 4). Retrieved from

2. Together30 (2019). Retrieved from

3. Spritzler, Franziska. The balance sheet of the Dukan diet: does it work to lose weight? December 12, 2018. Retrieved from

Leanne McCrate is an award-winning registered dietitian based in Missouri. Its mission is to educate the public about healthy, evidence-based nutrition. Do you have a nutritional question? Email him at [email protected]

Comments are closed.