Clearer skin, a slimmer physique, increased energy—the benefits of a dairy-free diet have all but broken the internet within the past decade, but the latest change the diet can bring isn’t exactly one that’s been plastered on tabloids. According to The Morning Breath, former Real Housewife of NYC and model Kelly Bensimon swears that adopting a dairy-free lifestyle not only changed her body, but also her eye color.
The once brown-eyed beauty claims that going dairy-free lightened the pigmentation of her eyes, stating, “now I have hazel eyes,” crediting the change to cutting out the food group altogether, “though she’s not a dietician.”
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When we reached out to celebrity nutritionist Paula Simpson to help separate fact from fiction, she explained that there is a field of study known as iridology that solely focuses on the idea that the state of our health is reflected in the way our iris looks (including color and markings). “Some proponents claim that detoxifying diets or those based on raw foods may change the appearance of the eyes,” she says. “More commonly, people experience a slight lightening of eye shades that is said to reflect increased purity and cleanliness in the body.” Because dairy is a “mucous-forming food,” Simpson explains that it could deliver more of a detoxifying or purifying effect in the body, leading to Bensimon’s brown-to-hazel shift.
However, Westfield, NJ, oculoplastic surgeon Baljeet Purewal, MD, says that while it is more common for newborn babies’ eyes to darken during infancy as the iris gains more pigment, ocular conditions—not dietary conditions—can, though rare, cause a change in eye color in adults as well. “Dietary changes such as eliminating dairy does not have an affect on the color of an individual’s eyes.”
The bottom line: While cutting out dairy can definitely support your health, don’t count on it to change your eye color.
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