Chef du Jour: Kellie Ann Murphy’s raw-vegan menu packed with flavor | Food & cooking

Kellie Ann Murphy had always tried to eat well. But there were times when a stressful job and a hectic work schedule had her reaching for another cup of coffee or making food choices that were not the healthiest options.

Five years ago when the then-vegetarian suddenly gained weight, her doctor discovered nodules on her thyroid gland. Instead of surgery and a panoply of medications, Murphy opted for a nutritional approach. She researched the benefits of becoming a raw-vegan, eating only uncooked foods or those cooked at very low temperatures that contained no animal byproducts. Within a week, she said, she lost seven pounds. By the time she returned to the doctor three months later for a follow-up visit, she was 45 pounds lighter and the nodules on her thyroid were gone. That was enough to convince Murphy of the healing power of food.

However, her new beliefs were soon tested when her husband of more than two decades was diagnosed with a brain tumor and required multiple radical surgeries. The devastating news could have been enough to send Murphy back to her old eating habits, but a friend kept her on track, bringing her raw meals during the first 10 days she spent at her husband’s side in the hospital.

“If you knew me, my old M.O., I would have been in the corner of the hospital room with chocolate cake and coffee,” Murphy said, but “I totally stayed raw.”

The way of eating kept her clear-headed, energized and able to sleep well even during the most stressful times of her husband Doug’s illness. Murphy continued to study the benefits of a raw diet and prepared foods for her husband that she thought would help his body cope with multiple surgeries, rounds of antibiotics and radiation treatments. Because he experienced extreme weight loss, Doug ate some cooked foods, Murphy said, but he also consumed the organic juices and raw foods she made. That made a world of difference, Murphy believes.

“My husband was supposed to live a year. They didn’t even think his quality of life for that year would be very good. He lived 3½ years and his quality of life was very, very high,” she said. “He was walking the dog at Agua Caliente Park after two years and all of his hair grew back. His doctors really believed his high quality of life was due to him eating a lot of raw-vegan food.”

Murphy took the lessons she learned while caring for her husband and turned them into a career. She is a certified raw-vegan personal chef and a health coach.

What is raw “cooking?”

“Anything is still considered raw if it is cooked under 118 degrees. I make a granola and it’s under 118 degrees. I do fake bacon. I make it out of zucchini and that’s for 8 hours at 105 degrees and it gets really crispy and believe me it does not taste like bacon at all, but if you are trying to look for that crispy-salty and you season it in a certain way and dehydrate it, it is really tasty.”

Do you have a favorite dish you like to make for clients?

“Lasagna. It’s hard for someone else to make it, that’s why they like me to make it. The noodles are zucchini, the ‘meat’ is walnuts. It’s made with fresh tomatoes plus sun-dried tomatoes, and the cheeses — one is a cashew cheese and the other is a macadamia nut cheese. That’s something people seem to love. I make that for dinner parties.”

Do you have any tips for people who want to try eating raw?

“My first thing would be to make their biggest meal lunch and if they were trying to include a lot of things is make a huge salad for lunch, but take off the salad dressing — no ranch, no thousand island, no bottled. All they really need is cold pressed olive oil and Himalayan salt with maybe a half an orange squeezed on top. People are blown away when they can taste the vegetables. Use a huge variety — arugula and the herb mix from Trader Joe’s and just take a peeler and peel a carrot over it. You don’t have to chop everything. Just peel a zucchini and maybe chop up a little celery and throw some organic pomegranate seeds on top and maybe throw on some raw sunflowers seeds. People will be amazed how having a big salad in the middle of the day will change their life.”

What about people who want to eat more healthfully, but don’t want to go 100 percent raw?

“I never tell anyone to go 100 percent raw. I say if you can, go 75 percent. I have a niece who eats really well, she is Raw Till 4. Raw Till 4 is when you make your breakfast, your lunch, your two snacks all raw and after 4 you have your cooked meal.

“Go ahead and eat cooked food, but don’t eat processed food, don’t open a box.”

A researcher discovered how cavemen cleaned their teeth. It will make you want to brush yours.

The earliest known toothbrushes date back to 3500 B.C., found in Egyptian tombs next to their owners. They’re pieces of stick, really, with frayed ends to whisk away debris. But the fact that the Egyptians thought to pack a toothbrush on their trip to the afterlife hints at one of the most vexing problems throughout human history: How do we get gunk out of our teeth?

Archaeologically speaking, it’s a difficult question to answer. Cavemen dentists were notoriously poor record keepers. And while bones can survive the march of time, biological material like chewed food isn’t as hearty. That makes it hard to know, say, what a cavewoman ate for dinner on a chilly night in northern Spain, or whether she preferred Colgate or Crest.

Karen Hardy may have cracked the mystery, literally, by breaking down calcified plaque from some of the oldest human remains in Europe.

“The dental plaque is a film that covers your teeth and that’s why you have to brush your teeth every day,” she told The Washington Post. “If not, it hardens and becomes calcified. Within about 10 days, it’s attached onto your tooth as this extremely hard material that you can’t get off unless you go to the dentist.”

If you can’t make it to the dentist, you could also have an archaeologist chisel some off your teeth a million years from now.

That’s what Hardy did with a fossil from the Sima del Elefante archaeological site in Atapuerca, a mountainous region in northern Spain.

The site “contains a rich fossil record of the earliest human beings in Europe,” according to UNESCO. The bones provide “an invaluable reserve of information about the physical nature and the way of life of the earlier human communities.”

Researchers also found painted and engraved panels on the cave walls, complete with hunting scenes and animal figures.

But Hardy had a specific goal: She wanted to know what those early humans put in their mouths. Modern technology and a million-year-old mandible helped her find out.

She scraped off some of the calcified plaque, then broke it down to find microscopic evidence of what was preserved inside.

Turns out, a lot. She was able to discern that they ate grass, seeds, other plants and meat — all raw, indicating they didn’t yet use fire to cook. She also found spores, tiny insect fragments and pollen grains — things they inhaled because they likely lived in a forest.

But the most compelling thing were pieces of indigestible wood fibers. Hardy believes they’re from small sticks early humans would jam in their teeth to clean them.

“We all get stuff stuck between our teeth,” she said. “I haven’t done the experiment of eating raw meat, but if you think about all the fibers and the tendons in meat, it would probably be worse with a raw diet.”

Researchers like Hardy have spent a lot of time exploring how people kept their teeth clean throughout history.

People who lived in Sudan 2,000 years ago, for example, chewed purple nutsedge, a bitter weed whose antibacterial properties warded away cavity-causing bacteria, according to National Geographic.

Our oldest ancestors had great teeth, despite the lack of toothbrushes, toothpaste and lies to dentists about daily flossing. But as humans transitioned from hunting and gathering to farming, tooth-decaying bacteria that feast on carbohydrates proliferated in human mouths, according to NPR. The industrial revolution made things worse, pumping sugar and processed flour into our diets.

Our teeth are whiter and straighter than our ancestors’ but also more likely to develop cavities. We’ve also replaced sticks with dental floss, although an Associated Press study recently cast serious doubt on the practice.

Researchers have long suspected that early humans wedged sticks into their teeth to clean them, Hardy said.

Chimpanzees, which are connected to humans via a common ancestor, use sticks and pieces of grass to clean between their teeth.

And ancient fossils of teeth have tiny holes on the sides, called interproximal grooves, that are likely caused by repeated cleanings with sticks.

Hardy insists her findings are from a small data set — the plaque from one fossil.

But her research is able to be replicated because of the hearty nature of the film on our teeth.

“Once it’s there it stays there,” she said. “It’s kind of like a tattoo of biological information — a personal time capsule.”

Read more: 

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Was Anne Frank’s family betrayed? After 72 years, historians have a new theory.

Amelia Earhart didn’t die in a plane crash, investigators say. This is their theory.

A military historian’s find could unlock the mystery of 136 sailors missing since World War II

How to feel full on fewer calories





By Mayo Clinic News Network

Feel full on fewer calories? It might sound like another gimmick for weight loss, but it’s not. The concept of energy density really can help with weight loss. In fact, well-planned weight-loss diets use the concept of energy density to help you lose weight and keep it off long term.

Weight loss with more food, fewer calories

Simply put, energy density is the number of calories (energy) in a specific amount of food. High energy density means that there are a lot of calories in a little food. Low energy density means there are few calories in a lot of food.

When you’re striving for weight loss, the goal is to eat low-energy-dense foods. That is, you want to eat a greater volume of food that’s lower in calories. This helps you feel fuller on fewer calories. Here’s a quick example with raisins and grapes. Raisins have a high energy density — 1 cup of raisins has about 434 calories. Grapes have a low energy density — 1 cup of grapes has about 82 calories.

The keys to energy density and weight loss

Three main factors play a role in what makes food high or low in energy density:

Water. Fruits and vegetables are generally high in water content, which provides volume and weight but not calories. That’s why they’re low-energy-dense foods. Grapefruit, for example, is about 90 percent water. Half a grapefruit has just 37 calories. Raw, fresh carrots are about 88 percent water. A medium carrot has only about 25 calories.

Fiber. High-fiber foods not only provide volume, but also take longer to digest, making you feel full longer on fewer calories. Vegetables, fruits and whole grains all contain fiber. Popcorn is a good example of a high-volume, low-calorie whole grain. One cup of air-popped popcorn has about 30 calories.

Fat. Fat is high in energy density. One pat of butter, for example, contains almost the same number of calories as 2 cups of raw broccoli. Foods that contain fat naturally, such as dairy products and various meats, or foods with added fats are higher in calories than are their leaner or lower fat counterparts.

Energy density and the food pyramid

Changing lifestyle habits is never easy, and creating an eating plan using the energy-density concept is no exception. The first step is knowing which foods are better options when it comes to energy density. Here’s a look at energy density by the categories in the Mayo Clinic Healthy Weight Pyramid.

Vegetables

Most vegetables are low in calories but high in volume or weight. Many vegetables contain water, which provides weight without calories. Examples include salad greens, asparagus, green beans, broccoli and zucchini. To add more vegetables to your diet, top your pasta with sauteed vegetables instead of meat or cheese sauce. Decrease the meat portion on your plate and increase the serving of vegetables. Add vegetables to your sandwiches. Snack on raw vegetables.

Fruits

Practically all types of fruit fit into a healthy diet. But some fruits are lower calorie choices than others are. Whole fresh, frozen and canned fruits without syrup are good options. In contrast, fruit juices and dried fruits are concentrated sources of natural sugar and therefore have a high energy density — more calories — and they don’t fill you up as much. To fit more fruits into your diet, add blueberries to your cereal in the morning. Try mango or peach slices on whole-wheat toast with a little peanut butter and honey. Or toss some mandarin orange and peach slices into a salad.

Carbohydrates

Many carbohydrates are either grains or made from grains, such as cereal, rice, bread and pasta. Whole grains are the best option because they’re higher in fiber and other important nutrients. Emphasize whole grains by simply choosing whole-wheat bread, whole-wheat pasta, oatmeal, brown rice and whole-grain cereal instead of refined grains. Because many carbohydrates are higher in energy density, keep an eye on portion sizes.

Protein and dairy

These include food from both plant and animal sources. The healthiest lower energy-dense choices are foods that are high in protein but low in fat and calories, such as legumes (beans, peas and lentils, which are also good sources of fiber), fish, skinless white-meat poultry, fat-free dairy products and egg whites.

Fats

While fats are high-energy-dense foods, some fats are healthier than others. Include small amounts of healthy monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats in your diet. Nuts, seeds, and oils, such as olive, flaxseed and safflower oils, contain healthy fats.

Sweets

Like fats, sweets are typically high in energy density. Good options for sweets include those that are low in added fat and contain healthy ingredients, such as fruits, whole grains and low-fat dairy. Examples include fresh fruit topped with low-fat yogurt, a cookie made with whole-wheat flour or a scoop of low-fat ice cream. The keys to sweets are to keep the serving size small and the ingredients healthy. Even a small piece of dark chocolate can fit into a weight-loss plan.

Making energy density work for you

When you stick to the concept of energy density, you don’t have to feel hungry or deprived. By including plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables and whole grains in your diet, you can feel full on fewer calories. You may even have room in your diet for a tasty sweet on occasion. By eating larger portions of low-energy-density foods, you squelch those hunger pains, take in fewer calories and feel better about your meal, which contributes to how satisfied you feel overall.

Source: http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-living/weight-loss/in-depth/weight-loss/art-20044318/

Caveman diet revealed after scientists study 1.2 million-year-old teeth – Technology & Science

If you’re trying to follow a diet similar to what a caveman ate roughly 1.2 million years ago, you may want to add uncooked grass and meat to your routine.

A new study published in The Science of Nature journal looked at the hardened tartar buildup found in one of the oldest hominin remains discovered in Europe.

The teeth were from a jawbone discovered in 2007 at the Sima Del Elefante excavation site in Spain’s Atapeurca Mountains. Archeologists believe the jawbone is between 1.1 and 1.2 million years old.

From the tartar samples, archeologists found various fibres including plants, animal tissues, a scale from a butterfly’s wing and a fragment of an insect leg. Archeologists also found fibres from non-edible wood.

The wood is believed to have been from regular tooth picking, an early form of dental hygiene.

The other fibres found in the tartar offered a glimpse into the caveman’s diet. Starch granules were found, suggesting early hominins may have eaten grass seeds.

Raw-food diet 

“Grasses produce abundant seeds in a compact head, which may be conveniently chewed especially before the seeds mature fully, dry out and scatter,” lead researcher Karen Hardy said.

Hardy also said that because the granules were largely intact and uncharred, it’s believed food was consumed uncooked. Other evidence of a raw-food diet was that the teeth showed signs of heavy use from gripping and chewing raw materials.

“Our evidence for the consumption of at least two different starchy plants, in addition to the direct evidence for consumption of meat and plant-based raw materials, suggests that this very early European hominin population had a detailed understanding of its surroundings and a broad diet,” Hardy said.

Dental Plaque Dates Raw Food Consumption

Spain raw food YORK, ENGLAND—The Deccan Herald reports that scientists from the University of York and the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona analyzed dental plaque taken from 1.2-million-year-old hominin remains recovered in northern Spain’s Sima del Elefante. Microfossils in the plaque suggest that the hominin ate raw animal tissue, uncooked grasses, pollen from a species of pine, and insects. The researchers also found possible fragments of a toothpick. All of the materials were uncharred, and there was no microcharcoal, or evidence that the individual had inhaled any smoke, in the sample. So far, the earliest known evidence for the use of fire in Europe is 800,000 years old and was found at Cueva Negra, in southeastern Spain. A site of similar age has been found in Israel, and possible sites for very early use of fire have been found in Africa. Taken together, the evidence suggests that human ancestors began using fire and cooking food sometime between 1.2 million and 800,000 years ago. Karen Hardy of the University of York noted that cooked food provides more energy, and may have fueled an evolutionary increase in brain size. The date of the remains coincides with the possible development of salivary amylase, an enzyme necessary to digest cooked starchy foods. To read in-depth about investigation of ancient dental plaque, go to “Worlds Within Us.”

Christmas freezer tips everyone should know released by Food Standard Agency

Christmas can be a stressful time of year, and with plenty of hungry mouths to feed, the task of catering for the whole family can seem daunting. 

But preparing food in advance and freezing it until you need it could help make the festive season a little more relaxing.

There are tricks to learn however if you want to freeze food efficiently, and most importantly, safely.

From never washing a raw turkey in the sink to freezing food within two hours of buying or cooking it, these ultimate freezer hacks from the Food Standards Agency are tips that everyone should know.

TIPS FOR TURKEY

The Food Standards Agency has released a list of freezer tips that everyone should know, including never washing a raw, defrosted turkey

Freezing a turkey in advance can be an easy way to reduce stress levels on Christmas Day.

Once your turkey is cooked and cooled you can slice then batch it into portions and store it in the freezer. Freezing it in portions will enable you to take out what you need when you need it, and you can save the remaining turkey in the freezer for a later date, perhaps for a New Year’s Eve buffet.

Just remember that meat previously cooked and frozen should only be reheated once.

To prevent cross-contamination, ensure that you store raw turkey and other raw food, separately from cooked and ready to eat food, which should be covered and chilled on the bottom shelf of the fridge.

ULTIMATE FREEZER TIPS

  •  Slice turkey and freeze in portions to save time on Christmas Day
  • Frozen meat should only be reheated once after defrosting 
  • Never wash a raw defrosted turkey in the sink or defrost it in a bowl
  • Defrost turkey in large container to catch contaminated drips 
  • Let warm dishes cool down before freezing them 
  • Label frozen food with the date so you know when you put it in there
  • Freeze leftover wine in ice cube tray for later use 
  •  Store raw meat and vegetables away from cooked food in the freezer
  • Defrost turkey fully before cooking to prevent food poisoning 
  • A frozen turkey can take up to three days to defrost. Allow 10 to 12 hours per kg in the fridge.
  • Freeze food in airtight containers or freezer bags 
  • Eat food within 24 hours once defrosted 
  • You can freeze meals that contain ingredients that were previously frozen

To prevent the spread of food poisoning germs like campylobacter when handling your turkey, don’t wash your raw bird under the kitchen tap to defrost it or defrost it in a bowl of water, as this can splash germs around your kitchen.

Make sure that you wash everything that has touched your raw turkey with soap and hot water.

Always defrost your frozen turkey fully before cooking as partially defrosted turkey may not cook evenly – which means that harmful bacteria could survive the cooking process.

Defrost it instead in a large container to catch any contaminated drips.

If you have bought a frozen turkey and it’s a large bird weighing between 6 to 7kg- be warned: it can take up to three days to fully defrost in the fridge. 

In a fridge at 4°C (39°F), allow around 10-12 hours per kg, but remember that not all fridges will be this temperature, especially if they are very full. 

If it is not possible to defrost your turkey in the fridge, the next best alternative is in a cool room (below 17.5°C or 64°F). Allow approximately three to four hours per kg, or longer if the room is particularly cold.

LEFTOVERS 

Freezing leftovers can be a great way to save money and reduce food waste, but make sure you do it safely by only reheating defrosted food once and eating it within 24 hours

Make sure any warm dishes are cool before putting them in your freeze as leftovers. 

It’s best to place leftover food in an air tight container or wrap it well in freezer bags, freezer wrap or cling film before freezing it, to stop the cold air from drying it out. Expel as much air as possible from freezer bags.

Remember when you’re freezing food to divide into portion sizes so you’ll only defrost what you need and to write the date so you know when you put it in the freezer. This will help you to reduce waste. 

Freezing acts as a pause button. But once defrosted, the pause button is off and you should eat the food within 24 hours.

If you have leftover wine you can pour it into an ice cube tray and freeze it for use at a later date in sauces, gravy or (if it’s white) even as an alcoholic ice cube to chill your wine.

If you make a new meal such as curry or casserole from the leftovers, then you can also freeze them – even if you are using turkey that was originally frozen.  

I tried Beyoncé’s vegan diet for 7 days and I lost 5 pounds


beyonce
Doable for mere mortals or
just superstars?

Christopher
Polk/Getty Images


The INSIDER Summary:

• Beyonce once went on a raw vegan diet for 22
days.


• This author followed in her footsteps, ordering juices
and meals from Rawvolution.


• At the end of her diet the author lost 5 pounds and felt more
energized.


A couple years ago Beyonce decided that it was high time she take
a different approach to being healthy and staying fit. She
decided to go on a a raw vegan diet for 22
days
 and encourage her fans to do the same. As someone
who has tried so many juice cleanses including the Lemonade Diet
aka The Master Cleanse aka The Beyonce Cleanse, I
desperately wanted to follow Bey’s lead yet again and give a raw
vegan diet a try but did not have the will to force myself into
yet another form of what I perceived would be dietary torture
until now.

After an incredible summer of eating everything in sight at the
best food festivals LA has to offer like The LA Food and Wine Fest,
LA Times The Taste and
Dessert Week LA I decided it
was time for me to “Woman Up” and just do it. For science, of
course. 22 days seemed excessive, so I decided on seven.

I had no idea where to start in my quest and the idea of just
munching on bunch of raw carrots for a week was not going to cut
it so I enlisted the help the nice people at Rawvolution who specialize in changing the
minds of sworn carnivores like me with dishes the kinda blew my
mind.

I looked at all the ingredients for every dish which they proudly
display on their website Rawvolution and placed my
order for a box. My meals arrived at my door fresh and ready to
eat. Honestly, I had no idea what to expect, but what did I have
to lose?


Rawvolution juices
Rawvolution/Facebook

The Juices

I began day 1 drinking their Lime Cilantro Apple Juice that was
delicious AF. Seriously, I could bathe in a tub of that stuff. I
didn’t expect it to taste that good. I mean I love cilantro in a
my Chipotle lime rice but in a juice? Trust. It IS that damn
good.

The Food

In my box I received the following all organic, all raw vegan
dishes:

Asian Vegetable Nori Rolls
with avocado,
daikon, carrot, onion, cucumber, bell pepper, clover sprouts,
collard green and nori.

Broccolini Salad with broccoli, olive oil
and sea salt.

Chocolate Coconut Brownie with walnuts,
coconut, cacao and raw coconut nectar.

Fresh Corn Salad with corn, celery, onions,
cashews, pine nuts, coconut water, lemon juice, olive oil, curry
powder and sea salt.

Mock Tuna Salad  with sunflower seeds,
celery, onion, cashews, coconut water, mustard, garlic, lemon
juice, dill, dulse and sea salt.

Peach Cream Parfait with peaches, almond,
cashews, coconut water and raw coconut nectar.

Rawsagna with zucchini, sunflower seeds,
wheat-free tamari, olive oil, tomato, lemon juice sea salt,
garlic, onion, mushrooms, bell pepper, oregano, basil and olives.

Red Enchilada with coconut, cashew, lettuce,
mango, cucumber, bell pepper, onion, cilantro, lemon juice, olive
oil, wheat-free tamari, garlic, chili ancho powder, cumin and sea
salt.


Rawvolution
Rawvolution/Facebook

The Pros

1. The Lime Cilantro Apple Juice! I already said
that but it bears repeating.

2. I LOVED the Rawsagna. Seriously, I
am stunned that there was no meat in there and that it was so
good even though it was cold. 

3. They include dessert. Most food delivery
services do not give you dessert and that is such an missed
opportunity. Rawvolution’s desserts were amazing. My favorite was
the Peach Cream Parfait.

4. What I love most about Rawvolution is that every dish
was well seasoned.
In fact, I think that is their secret
making dishes that really satisfy. 

The Cons

The only con was not getting a second juice that normally
comes with the box but they did include a nice note telling me
their machine was broken. It’s all good though. Are you sensing
my obsession with this juice yet?

My Results

After seven days I thought I would feel starved, deprived and
generally unwell but it turned out to be the opposite. I felt
energized and my roommate said my eyes looked shinier. I don’t
know how eyes can look shiner but I will take it. Plus, I lost
five pounds.

Could I do this for life? I don’t know. I surely could see
myself doing it for more than just a Meatless Monday kind of
thing—maybe six days a week. The idea of not having to
grocery shop and prepare it all is a HUGE plus and no doubt the
food is delicious.  

Vegan and raw food movements gaining ground | Life

If you’re ever served a sandwich on wheat germ bread with a walnut pate and avocado mayonnaise, or a chia seed pudding, don’t give it a second thought, just tuck in, as vegan and raw food recipes are gaining ground in Greek eateries along with the rise in the number of people embracing these diets.

Fans of the two categories – which are distinct yet similar in many respects – met recently at the country’s first-ever Vegan Life Festival, which took place at Technopolis in the central Athens Gazi district.

“We had 6,500 visitors in total,” says Frangiskos Sakellaridis, one of the organizers of the event, unable to hide his delight. “Many of those who came to try the delicacies served at the event’s 50 kiosks or to hear scientists explain the concepts are not initiates of the lifestyle, but still flirting with the idea.”

Frangiskos is 30 and has been a vegan for three years. “I saw a dog being tortured while on a trip to China,” he says of the seminal event that converted him, adding that videos of livestock being mistreated is a major trigger for new initiates. “For 99 percent of vegans, it’s an ethical choice.”

Sakellaridis is confident that Greece will see more events and festivals like that at Technopolis. “The trend toward veganism, which is not just simple vegetarianism as it means not consuming any animal products whatsoever, is international and especially popular among young people aged between 20 and 30, who get most of their information from the internet,” says Sakellaridis, adding that he has lost 17 kilograms since swearing off animal products.

“I’ve been a vegetarian since birth,” says Flora Papadopoulou, regarded as a Greek guru on the raw food movement.

Born in 1960 in the Athens neighborhood of Pangrati, Papadopoulou was different to other babies as she would throw up any animal product she consumed and couldn’t even drink her mother’s milk.

“At the time, it caused a great deal of concern for my family, while doctors who ran all sorts of tests on me couldn’t come up with a scientific explanation,” says the 56-year-old, whose overall energy is that of a woman 20 years younger.

Doctors and her parents were afraid she would develop problems due to vitamin or mineral deficiencies, such as rickets. “But I grew up at a normal pace and was the tallest girl in my class,” says Papadopoulou. She also remembers some of the harder aspects, like how some parents didn’t want her to make friends with their children in case she influenced them.

Papadopoulou can smile about all that today.

“It was 1978 and I was telling some friends overseas about what I eat, and they said, ‘You’re a vegetarian,’” says Papadopoulou of the first time she was able to put a name to her dietary habits.

“I started studying it in depth in 1995 and then took it a step further to raw food, which I was later trained in by Alissa Cohen in the UK,” she says, referring to the best-selling author and raw food pioneer.

Papadopoulou herself has written two books on the subject and conducted hundreds of seminars.

“The transition needs to be gradual. For friends who don’t have the same diet as me, for example, I’ll prepare a pizza with cheese made from nuts,” she says, explaining how the dehydrator is one of the key pieces of equipment needed by raw-foodists, adding that the diet requires practice, organization and a good deal of time.

“I am convinced, however, that each individual should pursue whatever diet suits him or her physically, psychologically and mentally,” she says, adding that both her children are vegetarians, but her daughter eats dairy and her son fish.

Top 5 WORST celebrity diet trends to avoid in 2017 as advised by BDA

Always manicured, in top shape, with glowing skin – perfect celebrities seem to be bombarding us left, right and center.

So it seems only natural that mere mortals look to them for diet tips. 

But experts warn some of the detoxes touted by A-listers are far from healthy – in fact, they are dangerous for your health. 

Today, the British Dietetic Association (BDA) revealed its much-anticipated annual list of celebrity diets to avoid in the New Year.

The line-up this year includes clean eating, diet pills, teatoxes, the 6:1 diet, and green juices.

Diet experts warn diets like Kylie’s ‘teatox’ are dangerous for your health

The BDA, founded in 1936, is the professional association and trade union for dietitians in Great Britain and Northern Ireland, comprising over 8,500 food and nutrition professionals.

They warn that there seems to have been a spike in recent years of people’s fascination with food, health and fitness. 

‘With the New Year around the corner, the influx of even more weight loss blogs and social media feeds, diet books, nutrition ‘experts’ and celebrity-endorsed fitness DVDs on the market is inevitable,’ Sian Porter, consultant dietitian and spokesperson for the BDA, said.

‘All these options can make it overwhelming for people wanting to live a healthier lifestyle or lose weight. 

‘In this situation, it is definitely worth considering whether someone is simply profiting on your dreams and rather than shedding the pounds, all you’re going to lose is your hard-earned cash.’

And so, to help you discern the good from the fad, the association has compiled the worst celebrity-backed diets they have come across in the run up to 2017: 

1. Clean eating

Miranda Kerr is said to be a fan of this ‘diet’

Celebrity fans: Miranda Kerr and Jessica Alba are allegedly fans of this ‘diet’, and the Hemsley sisters, Madeline Shaw and Deliciously Ella reportedly advocate variations on this style of eating.

What’s it all about? The idea is to avoid all processed foods and eat only ‘clean’ foods, by eliminating refined sugar, cooking from scratch, and choosing foods in their natural state. 

However some extreme versions of clean eating will exclude gluten, grains, dairy, and even in some cases encourage a raw-food diet.

Experts’ verdict: Leave the cleaning for your kitchen work surface, not your food! 

Whilst it is beneficial to reduce refined sugar and limit processed food intake, the idea of foods being ‘clean’ and ‘dirty’ is concerning. 

In some circumstances this way of thinking is a prelude to ‘Orthorexia Nervosa’ – an obsession with foods that the individual considers to be healthy, and elimination of any food that is deemed unhealthy. 

In many cases, foods that are actually nutritionally beneficial are deemed as unhealthy such as those containing wholegrains, fruit and dairy, with no basis in scientific evidence. 

Unless you have a medically diagnosed intolerance or allergy to these foods, there is no need to eliminate them and doing so could lead to deficiencies in your diet. 

Moreover, often clean eating substitute products – such as coconut oil, and various syrups to sweeten foods – are as high in calories, no better nutritionally and more expensive too.

2. Diet pills*

Kim Kardashian reportedly used diet pills

Celebrity fans: Kim Kardashian and The Only Way Is Essex star, Sam Faier, have reportedly used diet pills to lose weight.

What’s it all about? Many of these pills claim to keep fat from being absorbed by your body, or ‘melt’ fat.

Others claim to suppress appetite or boost metabolism.

Experts’ verdict: Warning: danger! 

Diet pills should never be taken without first consulting your GP, pharmacist or dietitian.

Even regulated weight loss medicines on prescription can have nasty side effects including diarrhea.

Alarmingly, there has been a rise in the number of diet pills for sale online.

These products are often unregulated and can contain substances not licensed for human consumption like pesticides and have proven to be fatal.

*Those not prescribed by a medical professional

3. Teatoxes

Kylie Jenner’s Instagram features ‘teatoxes’

Celebrity fans: Nicki Minaj and Kylie Jenner’s Instagram accounts feature these products and Britney Spears reportedly uses them.

What’s it all about? Teatoxing is short for ‘tea detoxing’ – these tea products have varying claims from detoxing the body, improving skin, reducing bloating and losing weight.

Experts’ verdict: Tea-toxic! These teas often contain extra caffeine in the form of guarana or yerba mate, diuretic ingredients such as dandelion and nettle and the laxative, senna, which is not safe to take for longer than a week without medical supervision. 

They might create the impression of weight loss and detoxification but this is usually water-weight loss. 

Any further weight loss would most likely be due to substituting these teas in the place of high calorie drinks or food or as part of fasting plan. 

With the risk of the accompanying side effects such a diarrhoea, dehydration, electrolyte imbalance, gut damage and a lack of scientific evidence, go ‘tea-total’ on teatoxing.

4. The 6:1 diet

Coldplay singer Chris Martin reportedly followed this ‘diet’

Celebrity fans: Coldplay singer Chris Martin reportedly followed this ‘diet’, claiming that it made him more creative and improved his voice.

What’s it all about? The 6:1 diet involves eating like you usually do for six days and then for one day a week, some followers of this diet completely fast, meaning they don’t consume any food for 24 hours.

Experts’ verdict: Hungry for attention or just plain hungry? 

Completely fasting unless properly managed is likely to lead to a lack of concentration, tiredness and low mood, which isn’t going to make you more productive.

 There is no evidence that a diet like this would make you more creative either, and depending on your age, health and lifestyle, fasting could be dangerous. 

If you want to go down the fasting route, it is important to choose an evidence-based plan and consult a medical professional to ensure that this is done in a healthy and safe way.

5. Green juices

Blake Lively is said to drink green juices

Celebrity fans: Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Blake Lively and Gwyneth Paltrow reportedly consume ‘green juices’.

What’s it all about? Another means of ‘detoxing’ and weight management, green juices are essentially juices or smoothies made up of various fruits, vegetables, powders etc. Fans claim benefits ranging from detoxing to rejuvenation and weight loss.

Experts’ verdict: Juice-less! The body is perfectly capable of detoxing itself without the aid of these green liquid concoctions. 

Adding a green juice to an unhealthy diet is never going to make up for poor choices when it comes to food. 

In addition, people add in ingredients like nuts, coconut oil and whole avocados to their green breakfast juices too – meaning these juices can add up to as much as 400 kcal per glass. 

If you are still eating your normal breakfast on top of this, you are more likely to gain weight from consuming more calories, rather than lose weight. 

A green juice is not a magic fix! Keep your veg and fruit whole and limit juice/smoothies to 150ml per day.

Porter concludes: ‘We hear it all when it comes to the latest way to shed pounds from the good to the bad, and at times, even the down-right dangerous!

‘It seems that as a nation we are constantly on the search for that magic bullet approach to losing weight, wanting a quick fix, taking things on face value and trusting anyone when it comes to nutrition, food and diet.

‘The truth is, if something sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Ask for evidence and get your advice from someone properly qualified and regulated with nothing to sell or promote.

‘Make small sustainable changes you need to make forever. An eating pattern for life should be the one you can stick to in the long term, not a quick fix. 

‘Enjoy a rich variety of foods in appropriate portion sizes – moderation is key as well as being physically active. Losing weight is challenging and keeping it off is too, but it’s not impossible. 

‘Don’t make it even harder for yourself by following a fad.’