The Beauty Detox Solution
Review by: Louis Raskin
Theme/Concept – It’s all about energy. Our body has a certain amount of energy to use every day and we want to conserve that energy as much as possible. The first priority of our energy is to keep us alive by performing the basic and essential functions of our body. After the most essential functions of our body are met, the remaining energy can be allocated for different purposes. Most people allocate the majority of their energy towards digestion, leaving little energy to go towards things such as detoxification and purification. The reason why so much of our energy, what Kim refers to as “beauty energy,” goes towards digestion is because we are…
1 – Miscombining foods. The book explains how our body’s can only properly digest only one concentrated, non-water containing food at a time. All protein and starches, such as fish, chicken, meat, seeds, nuts, grains, breads and starchy vegetables fall under the concentrated category. Avocados are also considered a concentrated food. Think of concentrated foods as either protein (meat products and nuts) or starch (starchy vegetables and grains), and never combine them together in the same meal. Things that would be miscombining include meat and potatoes, turkey sandwiches, salmon and rice, and eggs with toast.
Kim suggest to not mix fruits with a concentrated group (Protein or Starch). Fruits with greens are ok though, such as with the her glowing green smoothie.
The reason behind not combining proteins and starches is because proteins require an acidic environment to be broken down while starches require an alkaline environment. While our teeth mechanically break down the foods we eat, the actual chemical digestion of protein begins in the stomach with hydrochloric acid and the enzyme pepsin. When we eat protein, our stomach secretes more hydrochloric acid and releases more pepsin. According to food combining expert Dr. Pickering, it’s not the hydrochloric acid that breaks the food down. What the increase in HCl does is it sets the proper medium in our stomach which allows the highly acidic pepsin enzyme to digest the protein.
Carbohydrate digestion begins in the mouth with ptyalin (salivary amylase) and continues to be broken down in the duodenum (the first part of the small intestines). Little HCl is secreted when we eat carbohydrates because they require an alkaline medium to be digested. Since chemical digestion of carbohydrates begins in the mouth with ptyalin, it is very important to spend time chewing higher carbohydrate foods to ensure proper digestion and absorption of their nutrients. While the protein-digesting enzyme pepsin requires an acidic environment to work, ptyalin requires an alkaline medium. If we were to eat a lot of protein along with some starches, the acidic environment of the stomach will impede the starches from being broken down and they will begin to ferment. Furthermore, the alkaline secretions from the starches in the meal will prevent the protein from digesting 100%. In this scenario, if the starches don’t digest because there is too much acid, they will ferment and cause a host of problems including gas, bloating, indigestion, heartburn, dysbiosis and lack of energy.
If we were to have a mostly starch based meal and include a little protein, we would secrete a lot of alkaline digestive juices and the protein will have a harder time digesting because the alkaline juices will neutralize the acidic environment and the proteins will begin to putrefy, causing the same problems as described above.
So clearly, if we want to fully digest our food we should eat things that require an alkaline environment separate from those that require an acidic environment.
What we now know:
Concentrated foods include all starches and all protein. We should never mix them together in a meal or else they will neutralize each other and impede digestion, resulting in fermentation of carbohydrates or putrefaction of protein. This taxes our system and drains our energy.
Non-concentrated foods include fruit and non-starchy vegetables.
Fruits should be eaten alone and on an empty stomach because they digest very quickly. Eating fruit with other food will impede its digestion, which is normally very fast, and the fruit will begin to ferment. Non-starchy vegetables are neutral and can be eaten with anything.
2 – The second reason why we use so much energy on digestion is because we don’t eat foods in the right order. Different foods take different amounts of time to digest. Fruits take around 20 minutes to digest while protein can take up to 4 or more hours to digest. We really need to eat light to heavy so that we can easily digest the food we eat, get the most nutrients out the food we eat, and then eliminate the digested food as quickly as possible so that it doesn’t “go bad” in our bodies.
Foods go bad depending on what macronutrient they are. Protein putrefies, carbohydrates ferment and fats go rancid. This is a huge consequence of undigested food that absolutely needs to be addressed and known by everyone. Retaining undigested food in our bodies and allowing the food to putrefy, ferment, or go rancid causes a host of consequences that can be very serious and range from digestive issues like leaky gut syndrome all the way to depression and anxiety.
The lights to heavy concept applies for both individual meals and for the entire day. For individual meals we should eat raw foods like salads first before cooked foods with chicken or fish. In terms of our entire day, we should keep breakfast light with either a juice or smoothie and we should avoid concentrated proteins until dinner because if we miss combine at dinner that at least our bodies will have enough time before breakfast to digest the food. We should also only eat fruits on an empty stomach because it breaks down the fastest.
The time it takes to digest different foods goes this order, from fastest to slowest:
water-> juices-> smoothies-> fruit-> greens-> non-starchy vegetables-> starches-> protein-> fat
Because animal protein takes the longest to digest out of all of the different foods, Kim advocates that we should limit our animal protein and strive to move towards a more vegetarian food plan. This should free up our beauty energy and allow our bodies to put it towards detoxification and purification which will make us look and feel way better.
So now that we know the two most important parts of the beauty detox solution, here are the other things we need to know.
Make your meals 80% alkaline with vegetables and 20% acidic with proteins and starches.
Take a probiotic supplement to improve digestive function, increase energy, improve nutrient absorption and for the hundreds of other reasons why you should take a probiotic
Help free up your energy by taking a digestive enzyme before cooked meals.
Kim advocates ongoing cleansing and supplementing with a magnesium oxygen supplement and performing gravity center colonics and enemas to assist with flushing out the toxins that come up when we start to detoxify our body by eating more plant foods. Without properly flushing out the toxins that come up when we detoxify, we may develop symptoms from the toxins that come up from eating so clean. It’s very important to do some type of cleansing such as colonics or enemas to flush the toxins out of our body.
Now for the macro breakdown.
Protein – Kim agrees with Dr. Campbell (the man responsible forThe China Study) in that we can obtain all of the protein that our body needs through plant sources. If we do decide to eat animal protein it should be limited to 1 to 2 ounces max per serving, only be eaten once a day at most, at dinner, no more than three times a week. Sea animals are preferable to land animals, and all animal protein should be organic, hormone free, grass fed or wild caught. (note – I added in the grass fed and wild caught. I don’t believe she mentions that in her book). Soaked nuts and seeds, sprouts, chlorella and many vegetables are great sources of protein. Also, because our bodies store proteins for at least 24 hours we can get all of the essential amino acids needed as long as we eat a wide variety of fruits and vegetables throughout the day.
Carbohydrates – We need to completely cut out all refined and processed carbohydrates including cereals, pastries, pasta, breads, pretzels, cookies, bagels and white rice. Sugar also needs to go. We need to stay away from wheat and all gluten containing foods including rye and barley. The grains that we can eat include quinoa, amaranth, millet, buckwheat and soba noodles. These grains should be soaked overnight and limited to 1 to 1 and a half cups per day. Starches that are okay include virtually all types of squash, yams, sweet potatoes and red jacket potatoes. These starchy vegetables should be cooked and limited to 1 to 1 and a half cups per day as well. Fruits are the strongest cleansers for the body and vegetables are the builders. A very important note that Kim says about fruit:
“If you are more than 50 pounds overweight, come from a lifestyle of eating devitalized and processed foods or suspect you have some kind of candida or yeast imbalance in your body, you should remain in Phase 2, Blossoming Beauty, for one to three months longer than suggested, or until you have become balanced. This phase doesn’t include sweet fruits.” (page 118)
Kim shows great insight and knowledge by explaining how we need to refrain from sweet fruits until after we have thoroughly balanced our body. Fruits are healthy but overconsumption of sweet fruits before our body properly cleanses is a mistake. Even after we are balanced, fruit should be limited to 3-4 servings a day. It’s more important to get the vegetables in rather than the fruit.
More on carbohydrates – Vegetables are the most important food and should eaten at every meal as the main course of the meal. For the most part, vegetables should be eaten raw. Lastly, non-starchy vegetables are considered neutral and can (should) be eaten with every meal. You can’t miscombine vegetables like you can with protein and starches. Non-starchy vegetables and raw greens can be eaten in unlimited quantities.
Fat – Kim advocates limiting fat and says that nearly all fat should come from vegetable sources such as avocados, nuts and seeds or coconut. Refined vegetable oils should never be consumed. Cooking fat oxidizes it and leads to free radical damage. Coconut oil is the best option for when cooking something and should be limited to 1Tbs a day max. Vegetable broth can be substituted for cooking oils.
One other note:
Kim stresses the importance of eliminating dairy from the diet. She points out how lactase production decreases and stops being produced after 2 to 3 years in humans, which leads to lactose intolerance. Kim points to studies showing relationships between milk consumption and cancer rates and casein (the major protein found in milk) consumption and autism. Her biggest arguments against dairy come from Dr. Campbell’s The China Study, “which was funded by such prestigious organizations as the National Institutes of Health, the American Cancer Society and the American Institute for Cancer research,” and how Dr. Campbell was able to find that of all the proteins, “casein most consistently and strongly promoted cancer and that it promoted all stages of the cancer process” (p. 101). So dairy is out.
In the words of Dr. Mehmet Oz, The Beauty Detox Solution is a “must read.” I learned a lot from this book. In my opinion, the “beauty food pairing” and “light to heavy” sections were the most important. The whole theory of “beauty energy” is a good one and can help people eat healthier and live better lives. Kim’s extensive personal experience in the world of health and detoxification, including her studies at prestigious institutions such as the Ann Wigmore institute, make her arguments more sound. The book was filled with both conventional wisdom and actual scientific studies. She doesn’t seem too overly zealous about switching to a fully vegetarian diet and I appreciate that. She even mentions how a lot of her clients continue to eat meat and feel and look better than ever by simply increasing their vegetable intake and following proper food pairing.
A few problems I have with The Beauty Detox Solution is that Kim promotes limiting meat consumption to no more than 3x a week and eventually to discontinue eating it completely. Also with her diet plan, carbohydrates make up the majority of the calories and fat is excessively low. I’m glad that Kim reassured throughout the book that eating a well balanced, whole food diet void of processed junk and refined foods is healthier than any diet (vegetarian included) that includes refined and processed foods, however, more and more evidence is pointing in the direction that a high fat, low carb diet can be extremely beneficial. People follow the science they predetermined is correct in their minds. Great writers such as Gary Taubes talk about the controversial science of diet and health. Other’s such as Tom Naughton reveal that not all science and recommendations, especially those coming from the major government institutions (American Heart Association, American Diabetes Association, etc) is good science. Even with that said, there is tons of good advice in The Beauty Detox Solution and I will be following plenty of the advice outlined throughout the book.
The thing everyone needs to understand is this:
The main principals of the Beauty Detox Solution, which are the same principals followed by the leading experts on nutrition, include eliminating refined and processed carbohydrates, sugars, artificial ingredients, prepackaged meals, gluten and GMOs, while at the same time increasing whole foods with an emphasis on green vegetables.
After the basic dietary principals are established, that is when the differences in nutrition come into play. There might not be a perfect diet for everyone, but science will help guide us in the right direction. I believe that all of the different philosophies on diet and nutrition have valid arguments. All of the different theories seem to work. It all comes down to timing, genetics and personal goals. You can achieve weight loss, clearer skin, increase in energy and a better life following many different diets. What’s important is that we use the best diet available as a way to reach our goals. This will usually involve a combination of many different theories. The important thing to do is to get down the fundamentals first, then worry about the details.
I really enjoyed The Beauty Detox Solution and highly recommend you grab a copy here.