Rachael Martin bravely tried the Sirtfood Diet – which has been credited to Adele’s dramatic weight loss – and even though she lost 3 kilograms in the first week, it’s not something she will be voluntarily doing again.
Rumour has it that Grammy-winning superstar Adele has lost 18 kilograms since her last worldwide tour and the mum-of-one is certainly looking slimmer in recent photos.
Adele is reported to have stuck to a gruelling regime to lose weight and Pilates instructor Camila Goodis (known as the Brazilian body wizard) revealed in a TV interview recently that while the star has been working out, ’90 per cent’ of her weight loss is down to her strict diet.
‘She’s working out but I think 90 per cent of it is diet,’ Camila said.
‘It’s a good diet to shed the weight. The first week is intense, green juices and only 1,000 calories,’ she said.
Adele’s Sirtfood secret to success
The Hello hitmaker is believed to have been sticking to the same diet she’s been following since 2017 – The Sirtfood Diet.
The Sirtfood Diet involves activating specific proteins in the body called sirtuins by eating foods like apples, blueberries and kale, whilst cooking with the likes of turmeric and parsley.
Encouraging your body to produce sirtuins is supposedly a good thing, as it is believed that they protect cells in the body from dying when they are under stress.
Sirtuins are also thought to be beneficial when it comes to your metabolism, regulating inflammation and slowing down the process of ageing. So, essentially, if what we know about them is true, they are wrinkle-fighting warriors that need to be protected at all costs.
As Sirtuins boost the metabolism, the more your body produces the better at burning fat it should be – and as we all know by now, fat burning equals weight loss.
The good news for anyone considering trying out the Sirtfood Diet is that in the list of the top ten most common sirtfoods are dark chocolate (at least 85 per cent cocoa) and red wine.
Plus, researchers believe that in just one week you can lose up to 3kg on The Sirtfood Diet, but still maintain muscle – so I decided to give it a go.
Getting to grips with The Sirtfood Diet
There are two phases to The Sirtfood Diet: Phase One, which Camila Goodis referred to as ‘intense’ and involves restricting calories and drinking a lot of green juice for one week.
Then, Phase Two, which lasts for two weeks and is focused on maintenance. You can eat three meals a day during this phase and it is recommended that you get some green juices in as well – but in addition to your regular meals, not in place of.
During phase one, you are only allowed to consume 1000 calories a day for the first three days. The calories must come from green juices made from Sirtfoods (so kale, celery, rocket, parsley and lemon for example) and then one normal meal a day, also comprising of Sirtfoods such as chicken, turkey, grilled fish or tofu and then green (ideally leafy) veg.
Then, for the last four days of the week, you can increase your calorie intake to 1500 calories, made up from two green juices and two Sirtfood-rich meals.
Time to get juicing.
Rolling in the deep dark depths of calorie cutting
If I never have to drink another green juice again it will be too soon.
Reader, I would love to tell you that after three days of drinking green juice and focusing on feeding myself Sirtfoods at the start of this diet I felt invigorated and refreshingly light, but to be completely honest it was the opposite.
Sticking to 1000 calories a day is hard enough, but when you’d like to function normally, fulfilling work commitments, tackling life admin and trying to uphold some semblance of a social life, it doesn’t go that far at all.
Plus, according to Britain’s The Sun newspaper, in addition to sticking to The Sirtfood Diet, Adele has been doing Pilates with Camila Goodis, as well as working out with US trainer Dalton Wong, so throughout the trial I kept up my regular circuit training gym sessions and threw in a few pilates classes for good measure.
After only drinking a spinach, ginger, aloe vera, flaxseed and camomile extract juice before a circuit training class on day one of the trial I almost passed out after a round of burpees.
On day two I went straight home after work and cancelled seeing a friend for dinner because I was just too tried (and hungry) to do anything but roll into bed.
Not that I would have been able to eat much over dinner anyway.
While the list of Sirtfoods is lengthy and includes a variety of foods ranging from buckwheat to arugula (rocket), soy, onions, dates and even capers, finding an item on a menu that was Sirtfood-friendly was way harder than I thought and something that I struggled with a few times during the two weeks that I followed the diet.
Cooking at home was much easier and, once the (quite rightly named) ‘intense’ first phase of the diet was done, I found that there were a few different easy dishes that I could whip up quickly throughout the week.
Kale salads with grilled fish or tuna, soy covered stir-fries and tofu-based curries with plenty of turmeric became my go-tos and they don’t taste too bad either – plus they filled me up sufficiently to support my exercise routine, so that was a bonus.
I actually struggled to get the juices in to the second phase of the diet because I found the three meals a day filling – but I threw a couple of kale-based smoothies in there for good measure. Kale is a key Sirtfood after all.
Hello weight loss, goodbye social life
Although I dropped the three kilograms as expected in the first week of this diet (and then some), I spent those days and the days after feeling tired and hungry (or, as my boyfriend would argue, hangry).
I might have seen results on the scales and had a slightly flatter stomach, but at what cost? The numbers looked good but I didn’t feel good to match and I also couldn’t help but feel that much the weight loss was just superficial water weight anyway.
I’ve tried diets before that have involved fasting, over certain periods of time or certain days, but I’ve never been on an eating plan that has affected my day to day and my social life like this one.
I’m sure there will be people out there (Adele included, I guess) who can make the diet work for them and still enjoy a fulfilling social life whilst bossing their 9-to-5, but I just found the regime a bit all consuming.
If I wasn’t prepping food that was Sirtfood-friendly, I was thinking about food, or feeling hungry and trying not to think about food. I was skipping social occasions or cutting back on workouts I would normally enjoy because I didn’t have the energy (or calories) left to do them.
I tried the diet for two weeks and that was long enough – but maybe that’s just me.
What our experts say
Sydney-based accredited Practising Dietitian Melissa Meier told us that while Adele’s rumoured Sirtfood diet doesn’t seem that bad at first glance, when looking at the rules long term, there are red flags.
‘All-in-all, the Sirtfood diet doesn’t seem too bad from the naked eye. But as a dietitian, I’ve got a few major gripes,’ Melissa said.
‘To start, with I’m not a fan of the extreme restriction at the start of phase one. The idea that this phase detoxifies your body is just nonsense – your organs are more than capable of doing just that- plus you probably won’t be able to meet your daily nutrient requirements during this phase, either.
‘The very fact that this is a ‘diet’ is another reason I wouldn’t recommend it. The intense food rules will become too hard to stick to – so you’ll likely give in, feel guilty and then start the diet again, and continue to repeat this cycle but never really get anywhere.’