It’s entirely possible that you and everybody on your street has heard of the 17 Day Diet by now. Yes, Dr. Phil is just not as popular as he used to be. But when he talks about a product, I still hear about it. The 17 Day Diet is a book written by California Dr. Mike Moreno, who is famous for being his patients’ “friend” (he started walking with a patient to encourage healthy exercise habits and started an entire organization). But these days, everybody with a “Dr.” attached to their name, whether MD or a doctorate of business, seems to be marketing a new “diet.”
So what is the 17 Day Diet exactly?
The 17 Day Diet is a diet made to help you to “cycle.” It is a 4 step low carb diet that disrupts your normal eating patterns as any good diet would. Obviously, whatever you’re doing right now isn’t working for you. It starts out as an extreme low carb diet and low calorie diet combined into 1, and it gradually transforms into a mildly low carb diet combined with plenty of healthy fruits, vegetables, good fatty acids, and probiotics.
Then it changes your daily calorie intake. Yes, you start out with only 1200 calories a day. But some days, you get to eat 1500 calories a day just to “mix it up.” According to Mary Hartley Rd, MPH, Director of Nutrition at Calorie Count, “There is no scientific evidence to support the efficacy of calorie cycling or its effect on metabolism. There is no harm in calorie cycling temporarily or indefinitely and the process happens naturally for most people, who don’t eat or burn the same number of calories every day. But I am not in favor of any process that takes you away from attending to the lifestyle changes that you need to make and practice for permanent weight control.”
Not exactly the ringing endorsement that one would hope for.
The 17 Day Diet has never been used and will probably never be used on shows like Biggest Loser. Yes, the Biggest Loser is extreme. But according to show directors, it is meant to focus on positive lifestyle changes. The 17 Day Diet is a low carb diet that gradually transitions into a healthy lifestyle, slowly adding in fruits, vegetables, etc. But considering the fact that a recent study at the University of South Carolina showed that people who maintain healthy weights don’t use low carb diets at all, the prognosis for the 17 Day Diet is not good.
So bottom line, doe the 17 Day Diet work?
Yes, you will lose weight if you use the 17 Day Diet properly. If you follow directions, minus the exercise part, (you need to exercise for at least 60 minutes a day, not 17) you will lose weight, and you will probably lose a lot of weight. The problem is that there is no guarantee that you will maintain weight loss with this particular approach.