Whether used or praised by celebrities like Rebel Wilson or TikTokers/health gurus, many of us have probably heard of the Mayr method diet. We consulted dieticians and health experts to learn more about its history, what it involves, the foods someone on this diet would eat, and more. Read on for tips, suggestions, and ideas from Trista Best, MPH, RD, LD, Registered Dietitian at Balance One Supplements, and Erin Quense, MS, RDN, Registered Dietitian and Nutrition Expert at Strong Home Gym.
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The history of the Mayr method
This tried-and-true diet, Best says, was first developed by Dr. Franz Xaver May nearly a century ago. “The Mayr Method is a century-old approach to weight loss that was developed in the 1920s by an Australian physician,” she says. Best notes that the foundation of this diet is “to improve gut health as a way to promote weight loss and overall health.” Quense adds that the Mayr Method is “based on the idea that eliminating certain foods, while eating more alkaline foods and incorporating mindful eating practices, will result in weight loss.”
What does this imply ?
The diet requires individuals to eliminate “refined carbs, added sugar, sodas and coffee, gluten, and dairy,” Best says. It also encourages alkaline foods like “apples, bananas, broccoli, kale, salmon, oats, nuts, chia, and some specific herbs and spices.” This isn’t an exhaustive list, she points out, “but it does provide insight into the focus on whole plant foods and natural beverages such as green tea and water.” This approach also requires those following it to practice “mindful eating,” Best adds. To do this, she says, “they chew each bite of food 40 to 60 times and avoid distractions while eating.” Quense agrees, saying the diet includes “avoiding and limiting certain foods, such as gluten and dairy.”
Is it safe for weight loss?
Although this question may be different from person to person, as many cite their success, Quense advises against the Mayr method. This, she says, is because there is a difference between a weight loss diet and healthy weight loss. “As a dietitian, I wouldn’t recommend this diet at face value for weight loss, for several reasons,” she notes.
First, while she acknowledges that this diet “may be helpful for some people with allergies or sensitivities,” dairy and gluten-containing foods provide “good nutrition and restricting them could, along with the time, lead to deficiencies”. Next, Quense analyzes how the plan “includes the consumption of alkaline foods, including nuts, fruits and vegetables, and seeds.” These foods are “wonderful to include in your everyday meals and snacks,” she points out, but adds that there’s “no scientific evidence that they will raise your pH” as the diet claims.
Although Quense doesn’t suggest this diet as a weight loss plan, she still believes “there are certain tools promoted in the plan that can help with weight loss when combined with an overall healthy lifestyle.” To lose weight healthily, Quense suggests considering the following aspects of the Mayr Method diet: “eating whole, healthy foods like fruits, vegetables, and nuts, limiting processed foods and added sugars, and practicing a healthy diet. mindful by eating meals and snacks with few distractions.”