17 Day Diet: The New Health Trend That Promises Speedy Results
by Kara Wahlgren
The diet has been generating a ton of buzz recently, thanks to dieters who say they lost 10 or more pounds in the first 17 days and continued to lose as the weeks went on. Instead of imposing strict ground rules ("No carbs, ever!") the diet is based on metabolic confusion -- the idea that you can stimulate your metabolism by switching up your eating habits.
The diet is broken down into four 17-day cycles. The first promotes fast weight loss; the second helps reset the metabolism; the third focuses on learning healthy eating habits; and the fourth is a combo platter of the other three. And for those without Jillian Michaels–esque willpower, there's good news: Each cycle leaves some wiggle room for carbs or cheat days.
Of course, there are some restrictions. Dieters are asked to cut out refined sugar, processed food and alcoholic beverages (so long, margarita mix!). Fruit is strictly forbidden after 2 p.m. A 17-minute workout is expected every day. And that breakfast cookie isn't exactly a triple fudge chunk -- it's a healthy "power cookie" with ingredients like truvia, whey powder and agave nectar.
Still, double-digit weight loss in less than three weeks is a pretty, um, weighty promise. And given that fast-fix diets often involve one single, unappetizing food (like cabbage soup or a lemon-juice-maple-syrup-and-cayenne cocktail) it's refreshing to see that the plan actually allows for variety.
Besides, if it doesn't work, you still have plenty of time to try another diet (or two) before Memorial Day.