Originally posted by FMF
No. It's about the process of digestion being more or less efficient in its conversion of food into energy/fat/waste etc. The stomach does not digest a mixture of protein and carbohydrates as 'well' as it does one or the other on its own. Another 'rule' is not drinking water at the same time as eating a meal, for the same reason. During the last ten months I hav ...[text shortened]... e been making no effort to select "healthier" foods than I ate in the previous 10 months.
I find TWhiteheads answer more compelling. Do we have any independant research saying that digestion of mixed food types is worse than that of individual food types on their own? Or is this justification purely from the proponents of the diet your are following? What evidence do they cite?
From our old favourite, Wikipedia:
The food-combining diet has been the subject of one peer-reviewed randomized clinical trial, which found no benefit from the diet in terms of weight loss.
Here's the abstract from that study (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10805507):
OBJECTIVE: The goal of this study was to evaluate the effect of two diets ('food combining' or dissociated vs balanced) on body weight and metabolic parameters during a 6-week period in an in-hospital setting.
SUBJECTS AND DESIGN: 54 obese patients were randomly assigned to receive diets containing 4.5 MJ/day (1100 kcal/day) composed of either 25% protein, 47% carbohydrates and 25% lipids (dissociated diet) or 25% protein, 42% carbohydrates and 31% lipids (balanced diet). Consequently, the two diets were equally low in energy and substrate content (protein, fat and carbohydrate) but widely differed in substrate distribution throughout the day.
RESULTS: There was no significant difference in the amount of weight loss in response to dissociated (6.2 +/- 0.6 kg) or balanced (7.5 +/- 0.4 kg) diets. Furthermore, significant decreases in total body fat and waist-to-hip circumference ratio were seen in both groups, and the magnitude of the changes did not vary as a function of the diet composition. Fasting plasma glucose, insulin, total cholesterol and triacylglycerol concentrations decreased significantly and similarly in patients receiving both diets. Both systolic and diastolic blood pressure values decreased significantly in patients eating balanced diets. The results of this study show that both diets achieved similar weight loss. Total fat weight loss was higher in balanced diets, although differences did not reach statistical significance. Total lean body mass was identically spared in both groups.
CONCLUSION: In summary at identical energy intake and similar substrate composition, the dissociated (or 'food combining' diet did not bring any additional loss in weight and body fat.
So it compared compared two different diets but did not compare against no diet at all. It was randomised but not double-blind (hard to see how you could double-blind this) but even with these caveats, it found no evidence that your diet is intrinsically better or worse than a normal balanced diet.
Having said that, if you are losing weight through it and have no adverse side effects, keep going. It sounds a damn site better than many other diets. I would be interested to hear what happens when/if you come off it.