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Sandra Lee announces she's going on a 'cleanse' after gaining 30 pounds

The chef is kicking off the new year with a new diet plan and a cleanse — but experts warn that most quick weight loss isn't sustainable.
/ Source: TODAY

Sandra Lee announced that she's kicking off the new year with a focus on her health, which includes starting a "cleanse" and making some changes to her diet.

"With Christmas in a bag in my backseat, today really starts the first day of the working new year," Lee wrote on Instagram, giving a shoutout to a fellow celeb, Rebel Wilson, who's been documenting her own weight loss. "As far as I know, 2020 was not a great year for anyone — except for my new Health Hero — Rebel Wilson. Personally over the last year I gained 30 pounds and weighed in at 170 two days before Christmas. None of my clothes fit and worse I feel terrible."

The chef detailed some diet changes she's making to hit her goals.

"On Christmas Day I started a new regime," Lee wrote, detailing the diet, which cuts out alcohol and red meat, includes "very few carbs" and focuses on "lots of vegetables and berries" and "fermented food" like sauerkraut. She said that she has also been taking vitamins and other supplements.

In addition to the diet changes, Lee said she's doing a NutriClean cleanse (a system of powder and supplements that claim to detoxify the body), although it's important to note that such cleanses aren't approved by the Food and Drug Administration and experts are skeptical about how well they work for weight loss.

"We don't really have evidence (or) studies showing that these (cleanses) actually have any kind of efficacy," registered dietitian Kristin Kirkpatrick told TODAY Health. "There's really no data. The other standpoint, though, is that the liver and the kidneys, our organs, do a great job on their own to make sure that anything that comes in the body that shouldn't be there gets out of there."

For people eager to lose weight in 2021, Kirkpatrick warned that they should take it slowly.

"If you really blew it out during the holidays, if you had a lot of processed foods and tons of alcohol, cookies, cakes, and then you drastically cut calories, it's a bit of a shock to the system," she said. "If you gradually say, 'OK, that was not the best approach to eating, I'm going to eat a bit more fruits and vegetables, I'm going to have more whole grains, I'm going to focus on healthy fats,' — so really changing the structure of the diet first — then cutting down the calories might work."

And while slashing calories and doing cleanses might result in quick weight loss at first, Kirkpatrick said that's not likely to be sustainable.

"That's not really weight loss, what you have there is a lot of fluid loss," she said. "That can be expected when you go on a low-carb diet."

Kirkpatrick said that those who are looking to make changes to their diet in 2021 or want to lose weight in the new year should focus on long-term solutions that are healthy and sustainable.