The God Diet is the latest weight-loss craze, one that turns to a clean-eating strategy that stretches back thousands of years.
The diet is based on two passages of the Bible pertaining to Daniel. In the first passage, Daniel fasted and ate only vegetables and drank only water to set himself apart for God. Later he fasts again, cutting out all meat, wine, and rich foods from his diet.
Faithful followers who turned to the Bible for moral direction have noted the passage, and decided to make the Good Book a source of diet advice. Followers of the God Diet say it makes them feel great and lose weight by cutting out unnecessary fats from their diet.
The God Diet, also known as the Daniel Diet or Daniel Fast, has gotten plenty of press lately. Nutritionist Susan Gregory wrote about the diet in a book called The Daniel Fast, and has also put out a number of YouTube videos sharing her thoughts and strategies.
Gregory calls the fast like a “vegan diet with even more restrictions,” because it also calls on dieters to give up caffeine, chemicals, and sugar. She said the result is a decrease in headaches, leg cramps, and fatigue.
Pastor Rick Warren has also spoken in favor of the God Diet, describing it as “a lifestyle based on the biblical story of Daniel, who forsook the king’s rich food in order to honor God’s best for him and his friends.”
But not everyone is on board with the God Diet. Nutritionist Zoe Harcombe told the MailOnline that over a long period of time, the diet can have adverse health effects. She said the diet is helpful in cutting out junk foods, sugar, and processed flour, but over time would create a deficiency in a number of vitamins and nutrients.
Harcombe said followers could miss out on Vitamins A, D, E, and B12, which could create serious health complications. She advised people who plan to spend more than a few days on the diet should take vitamin supplements.