You can eat almost anything on the Beverly Hills Diet. The food must just be eaten in the right order and with the right blend of other foods. It claims that if you follow it exactly, you will lose 10 to 15 pounds in 35 days.
The thought behind this diet is that it is not food that causes weight gain, but rather undigested food that results from poor digestion. It claims that the key to proper digestion is separating certain foods and blending others. This is thought to allow enzymes to work as they should, which lets food be fully digested. It also claims that you can help this along by eating fruits that have natural enzymes.
You can eat most foods, but there are rules about when you can eat what and which foods can be blended. For example, foods that are proteins can only be eaten with other proteins. The creator of this diet calls this “conscious combining.”
The diet puts foods in three main groups: proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. The carb group also has subcategories. Fruit is in its own carb grouping because of the enzymes it has. Other carbs are grouped by how long they take to digest, with maxi-carbs taking the longest. Here are some samples of foods in each of these groups:
Beef, cheese, cheesecake, eggs, fish, flan, ice cream, milk, nuts, pork, seeds, shellfish, yogurt
Butter, heavy cream, mayonnaise, oil, sour cream, whipped cream
This diet is set up as a 35-day meal plan. Each day starts with eating an enzyme-rich fruit. You can eat as much of this fruit as you want, but you have to wait at least one hour before eating another fruit. Also, you cannot eat food from some other food group for at least two hours. And after you eat food from some other group, you cannot eat fruit again for the rest of the day.
There are many rules for what you can eat and when. Here are some of the methods of combining foods:
The diet claims that you can “miscombine” once in a while as long as you eat certain foods after. If you eat something greasy, you can burn it off by eating pineapple or strawberries the next day. You can even compensate beforehand if you know you are going off the plan.
There is no science to back up this diet. The idea that undigested food is what makes people fat is not right. Undigested food cannot provide calories and lead to weight gain. No proof supports the thought that blending certain foods prevents digestion.
This plan can also be too low in calories and lacking in some nutrients. For example, on the first day, eating only pineapple until dinner is advised. And then all that is allowed at dinner is salad and corn-on-the-cob.
Lastly, this diet does not include exercise. This should be part of any weight loss plan.
This diet might lead to weight loss because the many rules about what you can eat make it so limiting. The plan is not clear. The best diets are ones that you can commit to and make part of your life. This diet is not advised for anyone who wants a healthful, balanced way of eating and weight loss.
Eat Right—Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases
Dietitians of Canada
Diets for weight loss. EBSCO Nursing Reference Center website. Available at: https://www.ebscohost.com/nursing/products/nursing-reference-center. Accessed July 28, 2021.
Mazel J. The New Beverly Hills Diet. Deerfield Beach, FL: Health Communications, Inc; 1996.
Mirkin GB, Shore RN. The Beverly Hills diet. Dangers of the newest weight loss fad. JAMA. 1981;246(19):2235-2237.
Last reviewed July 2021 by
EBSCO Medical Review BoardDianne Scheinberg Rishikof MS, RD, LDN
Last Updated: 7/28/2021