By Leigh Brandt

This past summer I tried food combining in the form of Kenzie Burke’s 21 day reset. 

Burke, a holistic nutritionist and wellness expert, operates out of Los Angeles and created the e-book that is catching the attention of many. 

I had heard about her program through different influencers and was curious to see what the trending diet had to offer.

I am no stranger to gut health; I was diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease in 2011 so diet and nutrition advice always sparks my interest.

To break down food combining in simple terms, the proposed eating method entails pairing certain foods together, because of a belief that different types of foods digest in the body at different rates.

Fruit is said to digest pretty quickly, therefore it should be eaten by itself. Proteins and starches should not be combined as they have different rates of digestion and doing so could result in bloating. These are just a couple of the guidelines one must follow. 

This all being said, food combining can feel like a form of regimented eating, which can negatively affect peoples’ relationship with food. Though this didn’t happen in my case, I can recognize how people may be swayed or feel encouraged to restrict themselves on this eating plan. 

The point of the 21 day reset (at least what the reset claims) is to discover and build a healthier lifestyle overall. The diet encourages plant-based eating and awareness of what we put into our bodies — to ultimately build a better relationship with the foods we eat. 

I actually found that the reset led me to incorporate more vegetables into my diet and try out new plant-based meals and recipes. But as summer came to a close, so did my experience with food combining. Eating in the dining halls and navigating a busy schedule is not optimal or ideal for the rules of food combining.