Mandy Moore stopped eating gluten, dairy, soy and more on functional doctor’s advice


Mandy Moore is having a great couple of years and I, for one, am very happy for her. Obviously, she has her hit show, This Is Us, she married a neat guy, fulfilled her dream to reach basecamp on Mt. Everest and produced new music for the first time in ten years. During that time, Mandy also finally spoke out about the abuse she suffered during her relationship with ex-husband, Ryan Adams. So she’s sorted out many areas of her life that weren’t in order. This, apparently, included her diet. While promoting her partnership with the wellness brand, Nature’s Way, Mandy discussed making significant changes to her diet based on the advice of a functional doctor.

She has a hit show, a happy marriage to Taylor Goldsmith and new music, so it’s no surprise that Mandy Moore is feeling on top of the world.

“I feel so grateful for where I am in my life personally and I feel very fulfilled and very satisfied,” the This Is Us star tells PEOPLE. “[In our 20s] we all have to suffer through bouts of self-doubts and self-criticism. But none of that matters. All you’re doing is wasting time and energy when you could be pouring it into something way more productive.”

“I feel better at 35 than I did in my 20s. I have a very healthy relationship with my sense of self and with my body,” says the actress.

In addition to changing her mindset, Moore switched up her diet. “I try to make a good point of knowing what I’m putting in my body because I understand the connection with how I feel,” she says.

“I went to a functional medicine doctor and figured out things that are definitely not making me feel great. Random things like cow’s milk, gluten, salmon, soy and apricots. I took them out of my diet and it’s made a world of difference. I have more energy; I don’t have that fog and my digestive issues have pretty much resolved themselves.”

[From People]

I had to look up what a functional doctor was and learned that a functional doctor practices functional medicine, duh. According to The Institute for Functional Medicine’s website, FM is, “a systems biology–based approach that focuses on identifying and addressing the root cause of disease.” So FM falls under the holistic/alternative medicine approach to health. Doing a quick check internet search, I found that many traditional medicine doctors don’t care for it. The main issue I found for their dismissal is that FM uses unproven theories in their approach. A few major medical organizations have denounced it. However, many practicing FM have medical degrees and their theories are science based so I think FM should be treated as any medical advice – do your homework before pursuing and a second opinion is always a good idea.

So I’m not dismissing Mandy employing a functional doctor to sort herself out, but that diet sounds miserable. It was the apricots that got me. Apricots, specifically apricot jam, is very high on my list of things I love most in the world. I generally have some form of apricots in my home at all times. But I’ve also come clean on how much I resist being told I can’t have something. If I’d been given this advice from a functional doctor, my internet search would have been less “is functional medicine legitimate” and more “why are functional doctors so mean to me?” But, it’s working for Mandy so that’s what’s important. Generally, when someone makes significant changes to their diet, they feel different. I’ll be interested in seeing if she sticks with this restrictive nutritional guidelines but it sounds like she’s reaping the benefits for now. However, I guess when Mandy invites me over, it’ll be BYOA (bring your own apricots).




Photo credit: WENN Photos and Instagram

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31 Responses to “Mandy Moore stopped eating gluten, dairy, soy and more on functional doctor’s advice”

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  1. Noodle says:

    My mom has a soy allergy and do you know what a B it is to go out shopping or to eat with her? Soy is everywhere. It’s in everything. Those dang beans haunt me as I plead with the server to check to see if “Vegetable Oil” is actually soybean oil (which 99% of the time it is). Or having to break down ingredients on every marinade and every salad ingredient. It’s so. much. work. We don’t go out much anymore because of too many anaphylactic episodes at restaurants where they swore “We don’t cook with soy!” Good for Mandy for doing what she thinks is best for her health and body, and good luck with the soy thing. Maybe wealth buys you out of eating at peasant restaurants that use soybean oil?

    • CER says:

      Soy and corn are in so many things. I was diagnosed with those allergies, 2 o many, way back in the 80s. Trying to be compliant was hard.

    • Eliza says:

      I had to give up dairy and soy (and their byproducts) while nursing due to daughter’s health. Started off no soy oil as well, that was so much harder than anything else. You’re right, it’s everything!!! Luckily it was a protein thing, so the doctors said to try the oil (only trace amounts in oil) to give me some more wiggle room with diet once her reaction was controlled, and she didn’t react.

      Soy isn’t actually great for you in large portions because of the hormones in it. Dairy isn’t great for you as you age. But everything in moderation is fine. Elimination for the purpose of elimination is stupid, especially when it makes it harder for people with actual issues to be believed.

      • Mel M says:

        Currently dairy and soy free due to my two month old having a milk protein intolerance and it sucks so bad. It’s all Mr. M’s fault too of course because his whole family including cousins have milk issues where as no one in my family ever has. Yes soy is freakin everywhere and you have no idea until you start looking for it. Trying to get in the extra calories to nurse and not be able to eat so many of my go too foods that I’m currently craving sucks. Doing this during the holidays is going to blow so hard, not looking forward to it, sigh.

      • megs283 says:

        Ugh, I had to give up soy and dairy as well and it tanked my supply. And made me miserable, because apparently everything I love has one of those two things in it. I made it to six months and then switched to alimentum, and life improved drastically (for both of us!). FYI in case anyone doesn’t know, many insurance plans cover alimentum…

      • Mel M says:

        @megs283-really? I’ll have to check my insurance then because my boys who both have the dairy issue were on elecare and then nutramagin which is out of control expensive. Both were bottle fed from day one. Luckily my mother worked at a pediatricians office and would get me a lot of free samples of nutramagin from their reps so I didn’t remember how expensive it is. We also waited too long to introduce a bottle and are currently trying to get her to take one with pumped milk and it’s not going well. So once she starts to take one we will probably be switching because I’m exhausted.

    • Ugh soy says:

      I totally understand, I’m anaphylactic to soy and it is exhausting. The hardest part aside from food is that it’s in candles, makeup and hair care, all of which can produce a severe reaction.

    • Queen Meghan’s Hand says:

      Oh, Noodle I’m so sorry. Soy allergy is tough. It’s amazing (or appalling) how much soy is in packaged food. Like any food item that has a bit of self life has soy or the disclaimer that it’s been exposed to soy.
      I wonder if Mandy goes out to vegan restaurants…? Only ever orders the side salad with dressing on the side?

    • Northern_Girl 20 says:

      I feel ya, allergic to soy (not anaphylactic but I have to avoid) it’s so hard. Plus my youngest have several anaphylactic allergies. We have learnt to read labels but it’s so hard.

  2. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    I love any form of apricots. I’d love to have apricot ice cream, topped with fresh and dried apricots with a drizzle of apricot syrup and a dollop of apricot preserves.

    And I couldn’t live without salmon. Smoked salmon, cream cheese, capers and onions on anything. Salmon burgers, salmon crispy patties, salmon steak, salmon salad, salmon anything! Now I’m wondering about apricot salmon?

  3. Eliza says:

    The thing about America is we have the largest placebo effect of any country in the world. By a very wide margin. So when people say crystals and not eating apricots make them feel better, I believe them, but I don’t believe it’s anything other than mind over matter. Snake salesman, and GOOP, have been counting on it for years.

    I always think it’s our spirit, that it is engrained from childhood to believe anything is possible, but that less scientific.

    • Rose says:

      Exactly. My question is how long did she wait to remove a new item from her diet? If she stopped them all at once how does she know which one was the problem?

      It’s the reverse of introducing a new food to a baby. You have to introduce them slowly to observe adverse reactions and pinpoint which one it is

    • Christina says:

      Eliza, I used to think that, too, until I started having stroke migraines. I was mad that I was eating healthy and getting sicker and heavier as the years went by. My cholesterol was sky-high even though I avoided products that supposedly cause high cholesterol.

      My issues were so severe, and nearly caused me to retire early: I had to use the disabled restroom and could not climb stairs at my worst.

      Desperate to control my cholesterol l, I tried Plant Paradox: no soy anything, only avocado and/or olive oil. No more corn. No animal products made from animals that eat corn. No quinoa, brown rice, flour. Added MCT olí to coffee. No out-of-season fruit, and I treat in-season fruit like a candy treat. I can have dark chocolate, but I prefer milk. No sugar.

      Stroke migraines are now gone. I never get ANY migraine anymore. Inflammation disappeared. My skin changed. The fat on my body smoothed out. Conditions that I thought were a normal part of aging are gone: carpal tunnel, back pain from 4 herniated discs, constipation (had two surgeries for hemorrhoids). ALL VANISHED. My new carb is cassava/yuca. I have found substitutes for what I am used to eating (Magic Spoon and The Cereal School cereals; Siete tortilla chips, tortillas, and taco shells). My friends have told me that I look like I’ve lost weight, but I haven’t: it was inflammation. I used to be on a cane sporadically. No more cane.

      • Silvie says:

        I would agree! I think a lot of people in Hollywood (I live there) remove items from their diet in an attempt to be stylish. But I did an elimination diet 10 years ago and slowly removed most grains from my regular food intake and it completely changed my life. No more digestive issues, lots of extra energy, better sleep. I’m a big believer in functional medicine. I have a very weird intolerance of an enzyme in oats that regular doctors keep insisting is all in my head, but oatmeal and oat milk give me outrageous heartburn and Aveeno products make my face puff and turn red.

  4. josephine says:

    Every week the list of “forbidden” foods changes. And the lists contradict each other. Mushrooms is a good example of a food that lands on both the “eat more of” and eliminate list.

    You don’t need a functional doctor to create a list of forbidden foods. If you think you have a food sensitivity or allergy, work with an allergist who specializes in food allergies. You’ll go on a very restrictive diet and then work foods back into your diet one week at a time so that you get a true sense of what you are allergic to or sensitive to. It’s a long process and not a super fun one, but it’s a process that has helped identify true food allergies for a very long time. It seems much more sensible than trying to randomly eliminate different foods with every new report or suggestion.

    • Christina says:

      Josephine, that is what Plant Paradox does without paying an allergist. All of the information is there for the price of a book.

  5. manda says:

    Ha, the apricot thing is so funny. BYOA! Apricot jam is really really good. I would be the same way. Like, I’m pretty sure that stopping diet coke would make me feel better, no doctor has told me but I know what’s up, and that is pretty much a non-starter for me. I’m not ready to give up diet coke. I think anything else I’d be ok with, but my diet coke habit will be hard, very hard, to kick. I love all sodas but DC is my main jam

  6. Andrea says:

    Practitioners of functional medicine are physicians, just like any other physician. But instead of treating the symptoms of illness with, for example, prescription medication, they look for the cause of the symptoms and treat that. Further, they treat the whole person, and not just the single body part that shows the illness.
    Advice from a physician, functional or otherwise, to avoid an allergen is sound medical advice and should not be categorized as being “alternative” or somehow improper simply because avoiding allergens is also a popular and publicized thing to do.
    I don’t know as a fact, but from the reporting it appears that the advice to avoid apricots was because they produce an allergic response in Mandy Moore, not because it is trendy to diss apricots.

    • Moco says:

      They may be physicians, but functional medicine is not a boarded specialty and is still alternative medicine. It’s practitioners can vary widely in how medically accurate their prescriptions are.

      Based on the number of celebrities who seem to require specialized diets and crazy food restrictions, my first read is always to consider most of them medically “legitimized” eating disorders. Use the word celiac somewhere and maybe I’ll believe it…

      • Amalia says:

        @Moco…isn’t it possible that these celebrities have the money to have more testing done and the means to follow the diets that help them feel better? I would say most people have foods they have negative reactions to, and walk around feeling like crap without knowing why. If all people, not just the wealthy, had the ability to feel better by analyzing their diets, wouldn’t that be better for everyone? I don’t understand the derision these dietary decisions are met with. I have several things I cannot eat and feel my best. I am not a celebrity but I do have the time and money to figure it out. If I hadn’t, I would be neither as healthy or productive as I am now.

        And @tealily, all doctors should be doing that, but most conventional medicine is not set up to treat subclinical illness. You can walk around “almost” ill from any number of things, but until your lab results cross the line into pathological, you will get no treatment from a conventional MD. However, most illnesses do not pop up overnight out of nowhere, they take months or years to progress to the point where they will be treated. If diet or other alternative treatments can help in the meantime, that’s wonderful.

        Sadly there are practitioners who will take advantage of people who desperately want to feel better. That’s why I think there should be more qualifications or regulation of even the alternative or functional doctors. Some are much better than others.

    • tealily says:

      Shouldn’t all doctors be doing that anyway?

  7. JennyJenny says:

    I’ve seen a number of chiropractors call themselves “functional
    physicians”. They’re definitely not my jam.

    And hopefully there was true allergy testing done, not just what makes you feel bad/tired/itchy.

    I still place my faith in true medicine, as it has saved my life and that’s what matters most.

  8. Isabelle says:

    Soy wrecks havoc on my body. I even get nasal congestion from it. I follow the low histamine diet because of my severe allergies and part of it is eliminating soy products . For the most part it works and cutting out soy has helped in lot. That and intermittent fasting which Ive been doing for about 5 years helps to keep my asthma under control.

  9. Veronica S. says:

    Digestive disorders are one of those invisible diseases that most people don’t really understand how debilitating they can be. I’ve had to give up dairy, non-FODMAP, coffee, tea, dense sugars, cellulose heavy starches, acidic foods, and now gluten. It makes eating such a nightmare. I really understand how people with my disorder wind up with ED because food just becomes such a misery.

  10. SusieQ says:

    I have Alpha-Gal and a deadly crustacean allergy. Both of these things make eating out a nightmarish experience…it’s beyond exhausting.

  11. Andrea says:

    I took a food sensitivity blood test years ago and found I am sensitive to the following things: peanut, egg, wheat, pineapple, bananas, and the biggest one: red kidney beans. I have tested it by having egg or red kidney beans and it wrecks havoc with my digestive system, the egg in particular creates emergency bathroom situations. I can have egg baked into things, but not on its own. There is something to this testing because for years I thought I just had a sensitive stomach like my father, but turns out I eliminate those things, I am aok. I wish my father would get tested.

  12. Izzy says:

    I went to a functional medicine doctor ONCE and NEVER again. It was total quackery. First he tried to convince me that my migraines were causing me physical disability to the point that I couldn’t walk, stand, do anything properly. This is literally one day after I had an evaluation by a qualified neurologist WHILE I was having a migraine and had almost no deficiency.

    Then he starts telling me that I will br getting weekly B12 shots – while he is writing out orders for so many blood tests it would have cost me thousands. Mind you, I hadn’t had the tests yet, so we didn’t know that I was B12 deficient. THEN he starts telling me about this incredibly restrictive diet I will be on, basically vegetarian except for certain types of fish a few times a month.

    I left feeling like this was all just wrong. I decided to do some research using peer reviewed articles published in scientific journals. What do you know, one of the medications I take can lower B12 levels, and another source of B12 deficiency is diets lacking in the very foods he was eliminating. He was going to make me completely deficient and then make me pay to get shots.

    I went to my regular primary care doctor, asked for a B12 test, it came back at the low end of normal which can… wait for it… cause neurological events including migraines. He put me on a B12 supplement, an OTC pill, and I have a few migraines a year now instead of a few a month, now usually triggered by particular foods or hormone levels.


  13. Bread and Circuses says:

    I’m allergic to a few tree pollens, and apparently the proteins in the pollen are similar enough to proteins found in certain foods that you can get unpleasant side effects if you eat the food, even though you’re not allergic to it.

    Stone fruit is one of the things on that list, and while I thankfully can eat peaches, nectarines, and apricots with no problems, cherries will give me diarrhea.

    So her sensitivity to apricots could be something similar. (And all food allergies suck. Actually, all allergies suck.)

  14. Anna says:

    She said that *she* has specific allergies not that apricots or whatever are bad for everyone. Each of us are individual beings and I applaud her for trusting a real doctor–as in, someone who actually listens to the body and works naturopathically to heal not subscribe drugs–to get the help she needs. t
    For example, the majority of BIPOC especially anywhere outside of U.S. are lactose intolerant. The foods we are “supposed” to eat (dairy, cow milk, etc.) is all based on lobbying and payoffs to standard medical doctors and politicians who give subsidies and prop up whatever industry pays them the most. I will trust a natural “functional” doctor any day over standard medical especially related to matters of gut health. And gut bacteria really rule everything so if that’s off, your whole body, health system, life, everything is off. Everything is backwards in this country. Good for her to take charge of her health and listen to her body and a doctor who actually understands the holistic relationship between food and the body rather than buying the hype.