Cofrin Park

Cofrin Park
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Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Book Review: The Virgin Diet, by J.J. Virgin

Why go on a diet? Because, food is survival. Food choices matter: what you ingest either heals or hurts your body. You really are what you eat. Food is information--it affects gene expression!

That's why I recently read, and attempted to follow, The Virgin Diet, Why Food Intolerance is the Real Cause of Weight Gain, by J.J. Virgin. The tag line: "Drop 7 Foods, Lose 7 pounds, Just 7 Days."

I think she means 7 ounces, because that's about all I lost. My fault. No alcohol allowed in the first 2 cycles of her diet, and I did not drop the blood of Christ (aka Cabernet.) However, I did eliminate gluten/wheat from my diet about a year ago and lost 3 or 4 pounds. I have also eliminated sweets, most all processed foods, peanuts and corn years ago, and lost a few pounds from those dietary changes as well, so I'll give her those--even though I ramped up the exercise.

PREMISE: Food Intolerance (FI)
The premise of the Virgin diet: eating foods to which you are sensitive or intolerant triggers inflammation, leads to weight gain and causes other sucky symptoms. Food intolerance (FI) refers to physiological reactions that occur after ingesting the offending food. Such adverse reactions can take several days to manifest. Food intolerance is different from an acute allergic reaction, which can be deadly (like an anaphylactic reaction to peanuts, for example.)

Virgin identifies some possible causes of food intolerance: pre-existing conditions (like Celiac Disease;) radiation exposure; eating too much of the same foods daily; taking antibiotics; stress; and my personal favorite, leaky gut.

Eliminate the problematic foods according to the Virgin Diet protocol, and you should feel loads better. (I did feel slightly better during the elimination phase.)

THE 7 FOODS TO AVOID
The seven culprits that may lead to FI:
Wheat/Gluten (no surprise there)
Corn
Soy
Peanuts
Dairy
Eggs
Sugar and sugar substitutes

WHY AVOID THE 7 FOODS
Virgin explains how these 7 foods can adversely affect your body and brain, citing similar studies as others in her field. She lists a host of complications associated with FI: chronic inflammation, insulin resistance/pre-diabetes, hormone disruption, autoimmunity, fatigue, bloating and thyroid disruption. She notes other reasons to avoid FI foods include issues such as toxic mold (on legumes/peanuts) and the GMO debate. (GMO=Genetically Modified Organism)

Virgin adheres to what other authors, like Dr. William Davis in his book Wheat Belly, have stated regarding how food affects the body. However, she believes the reason you must totally eliminate the offending food is because eating it triggers the release of IgG antibodies. Those antibodies ostensibly create problematic immune responses, inducing inflammation and weight gain.

THE VIRGIN DIET HAS 3 CYCLES

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