Want to lose weight fast? How does losing 10 pounds in 7 days sound? That’s what the Military Diet purports to do, so I decided to give it a look and see if it lives up to its claims.
What is the Military Diet?
Like other diets I’ve reviewed on here, this has become quite popular lately as a quick way to lose weight. Unlike other meal plans described on this site, this diet is completely free – there’s no original book from one person who created this diet, rather it is a general dieting philosophy that caught on. However, while there was no single original piece of literature that spawned this fad, there are books like this one that have been published to provide more guidance on this diet.
This diet is also known as the “3 Day Diet”, as well as the “navy diet”, “army diet”, and even the “ice cream diet”, but no matter what you call it, it follows the same pattern. It consists of 3 days following a strict eating regimen. This is followed by 4 days of going back to your normal eating to complete the week. This cycle of on/off is repeated for continuing weeks until you reach your goal weight.
How It Works
Each week is split into two periods – 3 days on, 4 days off. During the first 3 days, you adhere to a low-calorie diet for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, with no snacking allowed between meals. The plan is to be between 1,000 and 1,500 calories on these days. This creates a caloric deficit and boosts weight loss.
On the following 4 days, there aren’t restrictions on what you eat, but it is advised to make healthy meal choices and keep your calories in check. You don’t need to be at or lower than 1,500 calories, but don’t go hog-wild everything in sight.
You will continue to follow these 3 days on, 4 days off schedule each week until you reach your goal weight.
What’s the Science Behind It?
While there haven’t been any studies conducted on this particular diet, the numbers behind it make sense. You could definitely lose a few pounds if you strictly follow this meal plan as described. When you take in fewer calories than you expend during the day, you will surely drop some weight during the 3 days where you are on low-calorie eating. It’s all up to your own discipline to stick with smart choices on the other 4 days to determine the success you’ll have with this.
Some detractors point out that the meal plans (described in this book) are low in protein and high in carbs, which is not the best recipe for weight loss. In addition, you could be at risk of nutritional deficiency on the 3 low-calorie days. There simply aren’t enough nutrients absorbed when eating 1,000 to 1,500 calories, and without supplementation, you aren’t getting the vitamins and minerals your body needs.
I can’t argue that you won’t lose a few pounds doing this diet. Eat minimal calories and you’ll lose weight. However, it lacks nutrition that your body needs, and for that reason, this one doesn’t get my endorsement. You can read more about this diet in this book here, but I recommend taking a look at these other diets instead (below) that don’t restrict your calories, rather they reinforce positive lifestyle changes and better decisions in the kitchen.