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Celebrity Diet Secrets: Hillary Swank

Posted Nov 13 2009 10:02pm

Oy. Here we go again with ridiculous nutrition statements by celebrities. This time, it’s Hillary Swank’s turn to talk nonsense.

In a recent interview with W Magazine, Swank proudly boasts that she takes 45 supplements a day! That’s right, in 24 hours.

This is my Aloe C, which I dissolve in water. Here’s my flax. This one’s for my immune system, and this one is my BrainWave — it’s great, like if I have a lot of lines to memorize,” she explains to the reporter.

All this advice comes from Dr. Oz Garcia, nutritionist to the stars, who Hillary credits with changing her life.

Before I go on to talk about Hillary’s pill regimen, allow me to shed some light on Dr. Garcia.

Specializing in “progressive nutrition, life extension, and anti-aging”, Dr. Garcia caters to Hollywood’s A-list and has had his number of television appearances. He also oversees nutritional services for Equinox Fitness Clubs.

Between that bio and his splashy website, you might think this guy knows his stuff.

Well, as we all witnessed with the Dr. Jan Adams debacle (who, despite being a media darling and even having his own show on The Discovery Health network, turned out to lack board accreditation and had a long history of malpractice claims by several patients), not everything is as it appears.

For starters, a 1987 Time magazine article describes Dr. Garcia as a “self-taught” nutritionist. That same article states that Dr. Garcia claims he can tell someone what to eat after analyzing a strand of their hair.

As far as I know, a strand of hair does not give you the same information as a blood test. Would Dr. Garcia advocate a high-protein diet to someone simply based on a hair sample, not knowing one of their kidneys is malfunctioning (and, therefore, need to be on a low-protein diet)?

Dr. Garcia predictably hawks his own water, described as “99.9%” pure and containing “three times the electrolytes found in sports drinks”.

The electrolytes in drinks like Gatorade are two minerals you all have heard of — sodium and potassium. Since Gatorade provides approximately one percent of a day’s potassium requirement, then this special water contains, at most, 3 percent of the daily requirement.

A much smarter idea would be to get this mineral in much higher quantities from food. A cup of cantaloupes provides 10 percent, as does half a cup of Swiss chard or butternut squash. Throwing in half a cup of black beans into a salad provides 9 percent.

Dr. Garcia also sells colon cleansing, fat-burning, and even anti-aging products, all in pill form.

If this is the man Hillary Swank looks up to, it’s no wonder she thinks nothing of swallowing 45 pills a day.

The excess of vitamins and minerals she is consuming is simply being excreted.

Just for the record, let me note that there are no mentally-sharpening magic pills that help anyone with memory.

Lastly, why is Hillary Swank taking flax in pill form? How about just sprinkling some milled flaxseed into a smoothie, salad, soup, or cereal bowl?

The wonderfully healthy properties of flaxseed (i.e.: phytochemicals known as lignans, which have been linked to a decrease in bad cholesterol) are not replicated in a flax pill.

And then we wonder why Kevin Trudeau’s books become bestsellers….

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5 CommentsCelebrity Diet Secrets, flaxseed, minerals, potassium, sodium, supplements, vitamins, water

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