The Bible Diet: Strange

This article is part of our Stupid Diet Series, therefore we do not recommend this diet.

The Bible Diet is a diet developed by Seth Rubin, and is supposed to include the foods that are prescribed in the books Levictus and Deuteronomy in which God supposedly labels certain foods and activities as ‘clean’ or ‘unclean’.

The diet, also known as the ‘Maker’s Diet’, pays more attention to how the animal was raised and slaughtered, and how the meat was prepared, than to its nutritional content. Meats and vegetables are included or excluded based on what it says in the Bible.

Some nutritionists who are against the Bible Diet say that the foods described in the Bible were most likely put there because they were the types of things believed to be good food when the Bible was written, and so it is not necessarily a good nutritional guide.

The Idea

There has been a great deal of radio and television discussion about the merits of the Bible diet. General consensus of those in favour of it say that the food we eat now is poisoning us because of the preservatives, hormones and processing that goes into it before we eat it, and that only food that is spiritually clean in the eyes of God should go into our bodies.

There is some substance in the idea that unprocessed grains, lean meats and fresh vegetables are good things to eat. However, the main thrust of the diet is not to eat things because they’re healthy, but to eat them because they do not offend God. This excludes pork, a relatively lean meat, and certain fresh vegetables that are otherwise entirely healthy.

What’s In It

Some whole grains, fresh vegetables, certain type of fish (like those found in the area around Galilee, perhaps), beef and chicken form a large part of the diet. Certain grains are allowed, but most carbohydrates are not.

Fast food is totally out, as is anything processed. Also gone is any pasta, potatoes, breads that have yeast in them and corn are all prohibited. Pork, bacon, ostrich, sausages (processed) and ham are all prohibited as well. Most types of shellfish and seafood are also prohibited.

The diet is adopted in ‘Phases’, with Phase One requiring one to phase out a great deal of what makes up a Western diet. What is left behind is only high-protein and fibre grains, some lean meats, and high quality, unprocessed carbohydrates.

Who’s On It

The Bible Diet is popular amongst presenters and fans of daytime Christian Radio and Television in America, but in few other circles. It has not attracted the attention of many notable celebrities, but it has attracted some unwanted attention from the American Medical Association and the Food & Drug Administration.

In 2004 the FDA ordered Rubin’s company, Garden of Life, Inc. to stop making unsubstantiated claims about the health benefits of eight of its products. As of 2008 there are no peer-reviewed studies to either prove or disprove the claims of the Bible Diet.

Why You Might Want to Avoid It?

The Bible Diet is actually a pretty good diet, all things considered. However, unless one is extremely religious and believes everything in the bible verbatim, there is no reason to believe that the Bible Diet is nutritionally advantageous, or that it will help you to lose weight or slow ageing.

The problem is that foods are included or excluded (and I’m about to get in trouble for this) almost arbitrarily, based on the pleasure of God rather than their nutritional information. Following this diet will certainly result in you eating a healthier diet. However, it may also result in some vitamin or nutrient deficiencies as you cut out important sources of these from your diet.

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