The Mayr Method Diet: What Is It and Is It Safe?

Here are the true opinions of licensed dietitians on the restricted diet.

Actress Rebel Wilson has exceeded her health objectives since designating 2020 as her “year of health,” sharing fitness advice on Instagram as she goes. The stream has featured surf lessons, a tire-flipping workout, mouthwatering food photos, and a recent entry on a trip to the Austrian health resort VivaMayr.

Wilson stated in a post on July 19: “Oh it’s so good to be back at @vivamayraltaussee working the Mayr technique to reset my system for the remainder of the working year!” The Mayr Method, a food and lifestyle program created by Austrian doctor Dr. Franz Xaver Mayr in the 1920s, serves as the foundation for VivaMayr.

According to People, the Senior Year actress has already traveled to the medical spa. After visiting the Austrian resort in 2019, Wilson adopted the Mayr Method into her regimen, according to the magazine in 2020. The 42-year-old actress may have been a prior visitor to the location, but she has subsequently retaliated against newspapers that claimed the Mayr Method was particularly how she lost weight over the past few years. For instance, according to Popsugar, she criticized the Daily Mail on Instagram by stating, “This was NEVER my diet,” in the caption of an image of the magazine’s piece.

Wilson has stated that she did not follow the Mayr Method diet throughout her path to better health, but her most recent post may have left her followers and admirers perplexed or, at the very least, wondering what the Mayr Method diet is and whether it is safe to undertake.

The Mayr Method is what?

The Mayr Method diet has been around for more than a century, but according to Alison Graziano, R.D.N., a registered dietitian nutritionist at Mass General Hospital’s Concierge Medicine and Executive Health Practices, its alleged connection to Wilson has increased its appeal.

According to Graziano, the diet’s genuine tenets include avoiding coffee, sugar, dairy, and gluten for 14 days.

The diet also calls for adjusted eating habits, with a focus on mindful eating practices including putting down electronic devices before meals, chewing each mouthful of food 40 to 60 times, eating only cooked foods after 3 p.m., skipping water with meals, and ceasing eating at 7 p.m.

According to Jenna Volpe, R.D.N., a gut health specialist at Whole-listic Living, the Mayr Method likewise emphasizes gut health. Through a mix of mindful eating, portion restriction, a concentration on alkaline foods, and avoidance of some items considered to be “inflammatory,” she continues, “this diet focuses on maximizing gut health.” (Read about the Top 15 Anti-Inflammatory Foods You Should Consume Regularly.)

According to Volpe, the Mayr Method also recommends lifestyle modifications such as cutting back on screen time, going to bed earlier, getting more sleep, and using acupuncture and nose reflexology in the therapy regimen.

The Mayr Method is it secure?

Both Graziano and Volpe believe that the Mayr Method is very restricted, despite some positive characteristics (such as including healthful items in your diet). But I don’t think all the bells and whistles contained in this dietary program are required in order to have a healthy gut and overall wellness, says Volpe. “Don’t get me wrong, I believe in the idea that a healthy gut is vital to a good life,” she says.

Both experts agree that eliminating whole food categories is undesirable for a variety of reasons. The nutritional richness of the diet is actually diminished when whole food categories are eliminated, claims Graziano. “Important nutrients including protein, calcium, phosphorus, and vital vitamins like B12 are found in dairy. Grains that contain gluten offer vital nutrients including fiber, folate, iron, and zinc.”

Furthermore, according to Graziano, the rigid rules of the diet may lead to harmful disordered eating practices. This is particularly true, she continues, “for people who have a history of continuous dieting or disordered eating.”

Try the Mayr Method, should you?

Graziano believes that’s a challenging pass. “The Mayr Method is not something I would suggest to anyone. Simply said, a diet with rigid dietary restrictions cannot be sustained.”

According to Graziano, using this diet to lose weight in 14 days is not beneficial, even though incorporating some aspects of it, like eating mindfully and without interruptions, may offer long-term benefits (like improving your relationship with food and helping you maintain a healthy weight for you). Water loss will account for a sizable amount of any weight reduction that occurs over those 14 days, she says. “Diets like the Mayr Method promise benefits through restriction, but any kind of restriction usually backfires and contributes to a risky binge-restrict cycle,” says the author.

Volpe concurs. She claims that “this program, like most other diets, is neither clinically warranted or tailored.” When it comes to nutrition, it’s critical to meet people where they are and offer advice that is scientifically sound and pertinent to each person as an individual.

It’s always wise to speak with your doctor or a certified dietitian before changing your eating habits if you’ve been thinking about adopting this or another new diet.

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