Food Combining Diet – Basic Principles

Food Combining diet is a special form of diet. It goes back to a theory of the American doctor Howard Hay (1866-1940). He assumed that the human body was unable to digest protein-rich (acid-forming) and carbohydrate-rich (alkaline-forming) foods simultaneously. Accordingly, a simultaneous intake promotes digestive disorders and obesity.

Food Combining Recipes contain all foods of a healthy and balanced diet. However, it should be noted that proteins and carbohydrates are not consumed at the same time, but at different times. In addition, vegetable (base-forming) foods should form the basis of the diet. On the other hand, acid-forming, i.e. protein-rich foods should only be consumed to a limited extent in order to counteract overacidification of the body. According to Hay, hyperacidity impedes the metabolism.

In addition, the Food Combining stipulates that so-called “unnatural” foods should only be consumed to a limited extent: These include white flour, ready meals, sugar, sweets, preserved fruit and high-fat foods. Further recommendations of the Food Combining are not to consume more than 100 grams of meat and not more than 30 to 60 grams of fat per day. Proponents of Food Combining should avoid alcohol altogether.

All diet plans for Food Combining are based on the findings of Hays. However, its adoption lacks any scientific basis. According to today’s knowledge of the physiological processes of the digestive process, the separation of protein- and carbohydrate-containing foods does not seem to contribute to a weight loss. Nevertheless, many people succeed in losing weight with the help of the Food Combining Diet. That is however rather due to the composition of the vegetarian-oriented, fat-poor and high-fiber diet style and the renouncement of sweets and alcohol. Also the thesis of the overacidification of the body is invalidated by the function mode of the acid base household of the human organism.

Food Combining Diet: Hay’s Food Combining

Hay’s Food Combining was developed at the beginning of the 20th century by the American physician Howard Hay. The iron principle of his theory is to consume carbohydrates and protein separately. The body could not digest both nutrients together optimally, and if carbohydrates and protein were absorbed at the same time, the body would be in a state of hyperacidity which was harmful to health. However, nutritional physiologists have proven that digestive enzymes in the stomach and intestines are directed towards the simultaneous digestion of different nutrients.

Although the underlying theories of Food Combining lack any scientific basis, the high proportion of low-calorie foods such as fruit and vegetables speaks for them. The recommendation to eat slowly and chew well ensures sufficient satiety. Four to five meals a day also make sense and supply the body evenly with energy and nutrients.

Hay’s claim to being able to heal diseases such as kidney disease, diabetes mellitus or fat metabolism disorders with Food Combining is dubious. A separation of the nutrients is also difficult in everyday life and does not make sense.

Who pays attention to a balanced nutrition and eats plenty of fruit, vegetables and salad and avoids at the same time fat sausage, sugar, sweets and alcohol, can influence a disease course positively. Food Combining neglects cereals and cereal products that provide the body with important nutrients such as B vitamins, folic acid, magnesium, iron and selenium. Cheese and sea fish are also important components that are neglected in Hay’s Food Combining. They supply the body with calcium, iodine and omega-3 fatty acids. Even if the meat portions should not be too large as suggested in Hay’s Food Combining, meat plays an important role as an iron supplier.

Fit for life is a variant of Hay’s food combining. According to the Diamond couple, the inventors of the Fit for life diet, the simultaneous consumption of protein- and carbohydrate-rich foods should disturb the equilibrium between the build-up and decomposition of the metabolism – this is how toxic substances should be produced. The mixed consumption of food would also produce digestive residues, so-called cinders, the degradation of which requires the full strength of the body. Since a complete elimination of the slags is not possible, they lead to obesity.

The Diamonds recommend eating 70 percent water- and vital substance-rich fruit and vegetables. 30 percent of the food should consist of concentrated foods such as bread, cereals, fish and meat. Milk and dairy products are banned because, according to the Diamonds, they “stick” to the intestines. Distilled water is advertised as a drink.

The Diamonds assume that there are three so-called body cycles of digestion, which are decisive for the intake, utilization and excretion of food: Eating and breaking down food from 12 noon to 8 p.m., intake and utilization of food from 8 p.m. to 4 a.m., release of waste products from 4 a.m. to 12 noon. These cycles must be taken into account when eating in order to avoid overweight. It is particularly important not to disturb the excretion phase so that excess waste products are removed.

The German Nutrition Society (DGE) warns against Fit-for-life. The diet lacks any scientific basis and could lead to a lack of important nutrients. For example, the lack of milk and milk products endangers the supply of calcium. The human body needs this mineral above all for the structure of stable bones and teeth. Also a cinder formation does not take place from nourish-medical view: The body uses metabolic products or excretes them. The exclusive consumption of distilled water is also not recommended as it does not contain any vital minerals.

Food Combining: Fit for life

Fit for life is a variant of Hay’s food combining. According to the Diamond couple, the inventors of the Fit for life diet, the simultaneous consumption of protein- and carbohydrate-rich foods should disturb the equilibrium between the build-up and decomposition of the metabolism – this is how toxic substances should be produced.

The mixed consumption of food would also produce digestive residues, so-called cinders, the degradation of which requires the full strength of the body. Since a complete elimination of the slags is not possible, they lead to obesity.

The Diamonds recommend eating 70 percent water- and vital substance-rich fruit and vegetables. 30 percent of the food should consist of concentrated foods such as bread, cereals, fish and meat.

Milk and dairy products are banned because, according to the Diamonds, they “stick” to the intestines. Distilled water is advertised as a drink.

The Diamonds assume that there are three so-called body cycles of digestion, which are decisive for the intake, utilization and excretion of food: Eating and breaking down food from 12 noon to 8 p.m., intake and utilization of food from 8 p.m. to 4 a.m., release of waste products from 4 a.m. to 12 noon. These cycles must be taken into account when eating in order to avoid overweight. It is particularly important not to disturb the excretion phase so that excess waste products are removed.

The German Nutrition Society (DGE) warns against Fit-for-life. The diet lacks any scientific basis and could lead to a lack of important nutrients. For example, the lack of milk and milk products endangers the supply of calcium. The human body needs this mineral above all for the structure of stable bones and teeth. Also a cinder formation does not take place from nourish-medical view: The body uses metabolic products or excretes them. The exclusive consumption of distilled water is also not recommended as it does not contain any vital minerals.

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