Average Weight Loss: Varies, based on individual choices. Try to lose no more than 1-2 lbs per week for the best long-term results.
Type of Diet: Balanced meals, portion control, reduced fat. Very flexible plan that teaches you how to eat and make better choices, but does not eliminate and food.
About The Diet
You may not have heard of this diet, but it is worth considering if you want to make life-long changes to help you lose weight and keep it off. This diet focuses on making healthier choices and does not have the same limitations many other diets do in that it does not forbid any food or food group. Dr. Shapiro calls this approach to weight loss a strategy and not a diet, and uses the acronym “FAT” (“Food Awareness Training”) to emphasize that he wants to teach you how to eat, not tell you what to eat.
Using pictures of foods compared side-by-side, he helps you understand how to make better food choices:
- He strongly promotes fruits and vegetables (eat any kinds and as much as you want).
- Learn to choose whole grains over refined products.
- Lean proteins are recommended, which include legumes, soy, and seafood.
- You can enjoy healthy fats including seeds, nuts, and oils, as well as avocados.
- Desserts are included, but he will steer you towards hard candies, but you can also indulge a little in fat-free frozen treats including yogurt, sorbet, and even frozen fudge bars.
If you are a grazer, or need to snack between meals, he offers a decent list of “anytime foods” you can enjoy without guilt. These include:
- All Fruits
- All Vegetables
- Condiments, dips and dressings (as long as they are fat-free)
If you want a plan that lets you really adjust a diet to your personal tastes and lifestyle, following his version of the food pyramid may be just what you are looking for. Because no food is taboo, this is also a decent plan for vegans, vegetarians, people with food allergies, and well, just picky eaters.
The biggest downside is that simply knowing something is not healthy may not be enough to keep you from overindulging. If you know that you can still sneak something it into your diet, you probably will and therefore, also will need to exercise discipline when controlling portions. Some people can eat 1/4 cup of ice cream — others simply cannot stop there and may need more concrete direction and stricter rules to follow.
This is the diet that New York police and firefighters have used (semi-officially) since the mid-90s and report to have lost (combined) thousands of pounds. Of course, people in these professional must exercise discipline and self control on a daily basis so it is not surprising that they might do so well on a plan that allows them to make smart, healthy diet decisions.
- No set exercise program
- More of a lifestyle change than a diet.
** Provided for information only. This is not an ad but an excerpt from Amazon.com so you can read more about this book. **
Dr. Shapiro’s Picture Perfect Weight Loss: The Visual Program for Permanent Weight Loss
By Howard M. Shapiro
Learn the Secret to Taking Off those Hated Pounds. It’s all About Making the Right Choice! A Picture Can be Worth a Thousand Calories! In this provocative New York Times bestselling book, Dr. Howard M. Shapiro proves that great eating and weight loss can go hand in hand. Giving you graphic guidelines of the calorie content of your food options, Dr. Shapiro empowers you to take charge of your diet. After all, losing weight is all about calories. Whether you’re eating out for pleasure or business, enjoying a snack or even a chocolate indulgence, his proven program of Food Awareness Training will show you how it can all be done-without gaining weight. So stop dieting, depriving yourself, and feeling guilty. Whether you want to lose 100 pounds or simply to maintain your ideal weight, here is an invaluable resource that will help you enjoy a healthy and happy balance in your life.
* Health Concerns
Because this is not so much a diet as a way to approach eating, you may want to work with a registered dietitian to ensure you get all the nutrients you need. As with any diet, it is always smart to check with your doctor before making drastic changes in your diet.