How To Spot Wellness Evangelism

A History of Wellness Evangelism

It may seem like there’s always a new diet trend or three that pops up every year. And that’s because that is totally the case. The past few decades are a string of diet trends, which could effectively mark each year. 1983? Oh you mean, the year of Jenny Craig. And as far as 2016, this is the year of “clean eating”.

It’s hard to keep up with the latest fads and the reasons why sane human beings should avoid them or at least some of them should. I’m looking at you, those without celiac disease. As consumers are finding the balance between wellness and wellness evangelism, there will always be some outliers that will fall for the instant miracle claims. Claims that more than often will do more harm than good. Protect your patients by being able to recognize the red flags. Here are the most popular trends and how to spot their effects among your patients.

Refusal of treatments and sudden nutrient deficiencies?

Your patient probably came across the GAPS diet or the “clean eating” trend. The concept of “clean eating” is consuming natural and whole foods in their simplest form. Sounds perfect, right? But just like with any diet, it can be taken to extremes and inspire food phobias.

Derived from its extreme counterpart, the GAPS diet, the face of wellness evangelism. An acronym for Gut and Psychology Syndrome, a condition coined by Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride, a Russian neurologist with a Masters in Human Nutrition. It refers to foods consumed creating an imbalance in the GI tract, resulting in various intestinal and neurological conditions.

Although there is no scientific truth to this, many continue to claim that adjustments to their diets and lifestyle cured their cancer. A bold statement like that will drive anyone looking for a cure to try the GAPS diet. There’s no need to remind you that any substitution for medicine is a potentially dangerous one. However, Penn State recently created a program to eliminate the danger. Physicians prescribe diets to their patients who they believe will benefit from it through ProduceRX

Abnormal bowels, laxative dependence, weakened colon?

It sounds like your patient has joined the movement, the teatox movement that is. A diet that has been trending for a few years now, but recently caught on fire once the Kardashian clan started promoting it via social media. Teatoxes are teas designed to detox the body which promotes weight loss. Most of these teatoxes contain senna, a root and leaf, that can work as a powerful laxative. Now here’s the problem: most of these teatoxes are sold in 14 and 28-day packages. Taking a laxative religiously for too long will surely result in complications.

Lacking oxygen, bruised torso/internal organs?

You can send the Kardashians another Thank You card for this one because your patient may be on the corset diet. No they are not eating corsets; however, that’s not too far off from the cotton ball diet. Those desperate for a flatter tummy are finding themselves buying corsets or waist trainers. The testimonials and the fact that they suppress hunger by creating a gastric bypass effect when worn make it seem like a win-win. But there’s a reason why this old fashion technique remained old fashion for so long. Not only are they restrictive and painful, they are a danger to internal organs. Worst part is that it is that the objective is to wear them as long as possible, and some are even known to wear them during workouts. 


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