The Mediterranean Diet was picked as the best diet overall for 2022, according to new rankings released by US News and World Report.

An expert panel assessed 40 diets to come up with the final results, examining the evidence behind each diet’s claims. Specifically, they evaluated the likelihood of short-term and long-term weight loss, how easy the diet was to follow, how well it conformed to current nutrition standards, and whether it could be an effective tool for diabetes and cardiovascular disease prevention.

Diets that rounded out the top spots for best overall included the DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) Diet (tied for #2), the Flexitarian Diet (a mostly vegetarian diet; tied for #2), the MIND (Mediterranean-DASH Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay) Diet (#4), the Mayo Clinic Diet (tied for #5), the TLC (Therapeutic Lifestyles Changes) Diet (created by the National Institute of Health’s National Cholesterol Education Program; tied for #5), the Volumetrics Diet (food is divided into categories based on energy density; tied for #5), and the WW (formerly Weight Watchers) Diet (tied for #5).

Diets that made the bottom of the list included the AIP Diet (Autoimmune Protocol Diet; an elimination diet intended to reduce autoimmune disease symptoms; tied for #35),  the Whole30 Diet (tied for #35), the Keto Diet (tied for #37), the Modified Keto Diet (tied for #37), the Dukan Diet (experts thought it was too restrictive, difficult to follow, and unlikely to result in long-term success; tied for #39), and the GAPS (Gut and Psychology Syndrome) Diet (a complicated elimination diet that lacks evidence to support its claims; #37).

As for diabetes prevention and management, the Mediterranean Diet was given the top spot, followed by the Flexitarian Diet (tied for #2), the Vegan Diet (tied for #2), the Mayo Clinic Diet (#4), the DASH Diet (tied for #5), the MIND Diet (tied for #5), and the Vegetarian Diet (tied for #5). The best heart-healthy diets included the Mediterranean Diet (tied for #1) and the Ornish Diet (tied for #1), which emphasizes exercise and stress management, in addition to dietary changes.

For those looking for a quick way to drop the extra holiday pounds, the experts chose the Atkins Diet (#1), the HMR (Health Maintenance Resources) Program (delivered meal replacement; tied for #2), and OPTAVIA (similar to Medifast, with meal planning using OPTAVIA products; tied for #2).

Additional diet rankings can be found here.


US News reveals best diet rankings for 2022. News release. January 4, 2022.