The Purple Diet. What is it? Simply put this diet, popularly followed by Mariah Carey, is a 3-day-a-week diet where you only eat food that is the color purple. That's right! This diet has the rules of a 7-year old picking out their favorite rainbow color: Now you only eat purple! Sound ridiculous? Yes, it does. Does it work? You be the judge.
What you can eat
Some may ask what you can actually eat on this diet. Well, is it purple? Then it's all yours! (Note, purple ju-jubes are delicious, but unfortunately they don't count for this detox diet.) The list of what you can eat is not bad at all: simply stick to purple and dark red foods and you'll be golden. Purple grapes, passion fruit, purple cauliflower, plums, purple asparagus, purple potatoes, purple cabbage, figs, passion fruit, purple rice and wheat, purple corn, purple pod greens, cranberries, blackberries, black olives, purple peppers, purple onions and kale, elderberries, blueberries (I'm sensing a theme, how about you?) and eggplant all make the list.
While many of the fruits and vegetables on the list are easily found at your local grocery store, one may be at a loss as to finding purple carrots. Check the organic section of your local veggie aisle for trendier foods. If your grocers aren’t that hip, check your local farmer’s market for your purple products.
How to prepare it
There are many meal plans available online, all of which vary in the manner in which you should consume your new purple food groups. For example, some say to merely incorporate more purple into your diet by having purple with every meal.
An example of this would be :
- Breakfast: Low fat yogurt topped with blackberries and blueberries and a handful of purple grapes.
- Lunch: Steamed asparagus or cauliflower with salt or purple corn with your lunch.
- Dinner: Steamed or baked eggplant with kale and purple potatoes.
Another version of the diet is more "smoothie" based; a typical recipe looking like:
- 2 cups of blueberries
- 2 cups of blackberries
- 1/4 head of red cabbage
- 1/4 cup of honey
- 1 cup of cranberry juice
Place ingredients in a blender and mix until you find your desired consistency.
How it works and why it helps
The Purple Diet is another trendy "detox" diet, however this one you are only supposed to do one to three days a week, every week. Why all the purple? Anthocyanin’s, or the compounds that make foods purple, soothe inflammation, reduce the risk of high blood pressure and low HDL cholesterol. These foods also tend to be low in calories - a plus for everybody.
The purple foods that make the "good for eating!" list contain a host of vitamins and minerals and antioxidants. These anthocyanin’s have the capability to heal your body, foster new cell formation, strengthen arteries which reduces the risk of heart attack and stroke, cleans toxins from your body, kick start weightless, reduce ulcers, prevent urinary tract infections, boost your immune system, and aide in wrinkle prevention.
The Purple Diet is also one dense with vitamins and minerals. For example, purple cauliflower contains sulfur compounds and antioxidants that kill the toxins that increase the body’s risk of cancer.
Side note: Your pee may turn purple. Don't panic, this is completely normal after ingesting so many blue hue foods.
Sceptics and the rainbow diet
As with most “fad” or “detox” diets, some doctors have taken issue with the Purple Diet, saying that while the advancement of purple foods into everyday living is great to see, perhaps these foods should simply be added to one’s daily diet instead of consuming their whole meal plan. The Purple Diet is just a small part of the arguably healthier “Rainbow Diet.” The idea being that the brighter fruits and vegetables appear, the more vitamin packed they are. While on the Rainbow Diet, dieters are encouraged to incorporate bright and colorful vegetables into their everyday lifestyle to reap a wider variety of benefits than offered by the Purple Diet.
Does the diet work?
Yes and no. Sounds like a cop-out answer, sure, but as with most "trendy" diets there are plenty of people available on the internet to argue one side or the other. You will likely lose weight, as you would with most other detox diets; however the weight is unlikely to stay gone without the addition of proper diet and exercise. As with other diets, there are of course health benefits in an all-vegetable based meal-plan, such as: reducing the signs of aging, fighting cancer, and getting your fill of nutritious anti-oxidants. So will it make you healthy? Sure! Will it help you drop 30 pounds? You be the judge.