A personalised 'DNA' diet that uses genetic fingerprints to determine the right food and exercise regime for your body type, goes on widespread sale today.
In trials of 7,700 people the Nordiska diet produced an average weight loss of 11lb over four months.
Nine out of ten participants lost weight and some lost up to 26lb in four months.
However, experts caution that any diet that involves reducing calorie intake and increasing exercise will inevitably lead to weight loss.
"It’s not rocket science," leading nutritionist Juliette Kellow told the Mirror.
"The idea that a genetic fingerprint can unlock the secret to how an individual loses weight is an interesting concept but if you eat less and move more, you will lose weight."
The Nordiska diet, developed by Newcastle firm myGenomics is being sold online at £99 for the swab test alone, and £159 for a 'package' including three months of follow-up advice from dietitians.
In order to begin the weight loss plan, dieters must first complete a questionnaire and send a DNA swab of their saliva for laboratory analysis.
The swabs are examined for gene variants relating to how quickly an individual metabolises fat and carbohydrate, appetite control and muscle activity.
The dieter is then assigned to one of four types of diet - low in fat, low in carbohydrate, low glycaemic or healthy balanced - and receives a 30-page personalised report.
The eating plan is combined with one of types of exercise: endurance or high-intensity.
The diet’s creator, cell biologist Dr Carolyn Horrocks, teamed up with Danish GP Carl Brandt on the diet concept after she came up with the idea while researching the risk factors for Type 2 diabetes.
She said: "Each of us has a unique genetic fingerprint which shows why some types of diet work for people and not for others.
"I realised genetic variants were being analysed for very technical purposes but they could be used by people in their everyday life to control their weight and help prevent the sort of diseases such as diabetes and heart disease that I was working on.
"If something is right for your body, it will be easier to stick to, less arduous and we have shown you have a greater chance of keeping the weight off.”
She added: "It’s not a fad diet, all our dietitians and trainers are registered and have a science background.”
She said the approach is intended to produce “slow and steady” weight loss, and is not related to the blood group diet which has been criticised by experts.
She added: "It’s not a fad diet, all our dietitians and trainers are registered and have a science background."
The trial was carried out by Newcastle University and colleagues in Copenhagen on men and women with an average age of 40 who had a BMI of 30 to 35.
Ursula Arens, of the British Dietetic Association, said she was "open-minded" about the diet, it was reported in the Daily Mail, but added: "Genes do play a role in being overweight but there are hundreds of genes involved and I’m not sure it’s as simple as this.
“In reality I think it’s minor compared to lifestyle and the need to just eat fewer calories and burn more.”
If you'd prefer an easier route to shedding the pounds than forking out £159, having your saliva analysed and wading your way through a 30-page guide, here are a few simple ways to curb your junk food cravings and reduce your calorie intake...
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