Zone diet: an expert comments on the favorite diet of Jennifer Aniston and other stars

Shot from the series “Friends”

The Zone Diet has been around for many years and is still very popular with celebrities. During it, the body turns into a “favorable zone” for burning and breaking down calories. According to its creator, nutritionist Barry Sears, this nutritional system will not only help to remove centimeters in the right places, but will also keep the skin taut and elastic. We asked an expert to talk about all the pros and cons of Jennifer Aniston’s favorite diet.

The basis of the zone diet is a diet consisting of 40% carbohydrates, 30% proteins and 30% fats. However, all carbohydrates must have a low glycemic index, which means that sugar is slowly absorbed into the bloodstream, which gives a feeling of fullness for a long time. The Zone Diet was developed over 30 years ago by the American doctor and biochemist Barry Sears. His bestselling book, Enter the Health Zone, was published in 1995.

Dr. Sears developed this diet after a relative died of a heart attack. Barry wanted to find a way to maintain his health. The essence of this nutritional system is to reduce inflammation. The expert suggested that inflammation was the reason people gain weight, get sick and age faster.

Diet advocates argue that by reducing inflammation, you can lose weight as quickly as possible, reduce your risk of chronic disease, and improve performance.

Guide to action

This is another variation on the protein diet. Protein is calculated based on body weight without fat. Each meal should contain an equal number of blocks (they are also, by the way, calculated from lean body mass).

For example, 1 block of protein (30 grams of lean meat, fish, or seafood), 1 block of carbohydrates (250 grams of vegetables or wild rice), and 1 block of fat (1 teaspoon) of vegetable oil. At the same time, the average calorie content of the daily diet should not exceed 1,700 kcal. You have to eat in this way every 4-5 hours, regardless of the feeling of hunger.

The use of dairy products should be taken under control – only low-fat options are suitable and no more than twice a week. Egg yolk should be completely eliminated, leaving only the white.

Approximate diet

One-third of the plate should be filled with low-fat protein foods such as egg white, low-fat dairy, or lean poultry, and two-thirds should be low-glycemic carbohydrates, including fruits, vegetables, or whole grains.

You should also include small amounts of healthy monounsaturated fats such as olive oil, avocados, nuts, or seeds. An approximate daily diet looks like this: an egg white omelet with spinach and mushrooms for breakfast, chicken salad with avocado for lunch, tuna with crackers and avocado for an afternoon snack, a hard-boiled egg with whole grain toast and peanut butter as a snack, and fried cod with vegetables for dinner.

In addition to paying close attention to what you put on your plate, it is also important when you eat. Using the hand-eye method, your five fingers remind you to eat five times a day, with no more than five hours between meals.


The zone diet requires you to exclude:

– coffee or caffeinated drinks;
– fatty meats, fatty dairy products;
– alcohol;
– egg yolk;
– foods with a high glycemic index: baked goods, pasta;
– potatoes, sugar, sweet fruits, rice, etc.

The diet has contraindications classic for a protein diet: pregnancy, gout, cardiovascular diseases, problems with the excretory system and pressure.

Doctor’s verdict

According to Andrey Nevsky, a nutritionist and founder of the School of Comfortable Weight Loss, the zone diet is good because it offers a balanced diet and will not leave you hungry. You need to eat five times a day and even before bed. The balance of BJU (proteins, fats and carbohydrates) has a beneficial effect on health and mental activity and normalizes metabolism. And avoiding simple carbohydrates controls blood sugar levels and prevents the development of diabetes.

Now comes the fun part. To get the result – the desired figure and excellent health, one must not only enter the “zone”, but also constantly be in it. This is the catch of all diets – they are limited in some foods. Yes, by doing this they create a calorie deficit, thanks to which we lose weight. By the way, we are losing weight only on a calorie deficit, and not thanks to some products. But living in a constant framework is difficult, sooner or later your consciousness will get tired of them. And, leaving any diet, you will begin to eat according to the “pre-dietary” rules, namely, they led you to excess weight,

– the expert notes.

To begin with, there is little research to support the basics of a diet. In addition, the Zone Diet is categorically unsuitable for athletes. In one study, athletes who followed a one-week diet showed a significant decrease in endurance performance. At its core, the diet is similar to the Mediterranean diet, which prevents several chronic diseases, including heart disease, diabetes, and Alzheimer’s disease.

Daria Shevtsova, Taryn Elliott, Lina Kivaka, Trang Doan, Pixabay, cottonbro /

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