A modified diet is any conventional diet is altered to exclude or include certain foods components such as mineral, vitamins, fats and calories. There are several reasons that influence a person to alter his or her normal diet such as to manage or avoid a certain medical condition, to lose weight, practice vegetarianism or to avoid allergy-triggering foods.
Modified Diet for Medical Conditions
Modified diet can be useful in managing a potentially serious condition. If you suffer from a heart condition, it is advisable to reduce your fat intake, especially animal fat, notes the University Dental Hospital of Manchester. Instead, add more oily fish, vegetables, fruit, and whole grains in your diet. If you suffer from diabetes, your diet should include low salt, fat and sugar, vegetables, fruits, starchy carbohydrates and fiber.
Modified Diet for Allergies
There are certain foods that can cause allergies such as peanuts, cinnamons, fish, dairy products, eggs, tree nuts, gluten and artificial ingredients (e.g. food coloring or preservatives). If you are allergic to any of these foods, reduce your intake of that particular food product in order to lower the risk of experiencing uncomfortable and potentially fatal allergic reactions. You can also substitute the eliminated food with alternatives in order to replace the nutrients that you might be missing. For example, if you’re allergic to dairy products, you can substitute them with rice milk or soy milk.
Modified Diet for Vegetarians
Vegans ingest only plant foods. There are numerous subtypes of vegetarian diet such ovo-lactovegetarian and lactovegetarian. If you must partake in vegetarian diet, ensure that animal-based nutrients that you will miss out on such as iron, vitamin D, protein and calcium are replaced. Such nutrients are available in non-animal foods such as beans, soy protein, nuts and legumes. Some vegetarians take vitamin supplements such as zinc and vitamin D in order to replace the lost nutrients.
Risks Associated With Modified Diets
While modified therapeutic diets are safe if adhered to properly, self-modified diets such as those that involve massively lowering carbohydrate intake or significantly increase or lower protein intake, can be harmful. For example, high protein diets can worsen kidney or liver complications, leading to nutritional deficiency. Moreover, reducing your calorie intake can weaken your body, as your body is unable to produce enough energy to power its basic functions.
Talk To A Nutritionist
Strict compliance is required for a modified diet to beneficial. Individuals who are allergic to certain foods must avoid them altogether, as failure to do so can prove fatal to their health. In case you find it difficult to observe a particular modified diet, talk to your nutritionist to see if any other alternatives are available. You can also visit your doctor to discuss the available options that can assist in managing your condition.
While you are on a modified diet, cultivate a habit of reading the nutrition labels carefully and keep a list of potential alternatives. For example, if you are on a diet that is low on sodium, avoid processed foods labeled with terms such as “broth” or “pickled”.