Find Your Best Quick Diet
Pick your perfect kickstart-phase diet from this batch of Health-approved plans.
For even more diet advice, our diet guide allows you to compare more than 50 of the most popular diets, helping you find just the right one—one you can stick to.
This Is Why You’re Fat (And How to Get Thin Forever)
Jackie Warner (Hachette Book Group)
Over two weeks, you’ll start changing your metabolism to drop pounds (Warner doesn’t specify how many).
The skinny: Instead of cutting out foods, you add 2 eggs, 1 cup of oatmeal, 2–3 cups of vegetables, 2 fruits, 2–3 liters of water with lemon juice, herbal teas, and a whey-protein shake to your daily menu to control your appetite (there’s no calorie counting). For exercise, do 20 minutes of intense cardio (interval training) five days a week.
Try this if you believe deprivation diets don’t work.
Cinch! Conquer Cravings, Drop Pounds, and Lose Inches
Cynthia Sass, MPH, RD (HarperOne)
Lose up to 8 pounds in five days.
The skinny: A clean eating plan thatlimits you to five core foods: spinach, eggs, raspberries, nonfat yogurt, and almonds. You eat four meals a day with these five foods, repeating the same meals for five days. No need to tally calories—just follow the recipes to keep portions in check. And skip exercise during this kickstart.
Try this if you don’t get bored easily.
The CarbLovers Diet
Ellen Kunes and Frances Largeman-Roth, RD (Oxmoor House)
Lose up to 6 pounds in seven days.
The skinny: Carbs are not the enemy if you choose the right kind—those with fat-burning Resistant Starch (RS), found in foods like pasta, brown rice, beans, and potatoes. Meals in this 1,200-calories-a-day kickstart from Health’s editors are built with RS-packed foods, lean protein, healthy fats, fruit, and veggies. Exercise is optional.
Try this if you know you stay satisfied longer when you eat carbs.
The South Beach Diet Supercharged: Faster Weight Loss and Better Health for Life
Arthur Agatston, MD (Rodale)
The book features real dieters who lost up to 15 pounds in the first two weeks.
The skinny: Spend two weeks cutting most carbs—steering clear of sugars (including fruit), starches, and whole grains. Instead, you eat high-fiber veggies, beans and legumes, eggs, nuts, lean meats, and low-fat dairy; no calorie counting. And work out for 20 minutes daily.
Try this if you wouldn’t miss pasta. Not one bit.
21-Day Weight Loss Kickstart: Boost Metabolism, Lower Cholesterol and Dramatically Improve Your Health
Neal D. Barnard, MD (Grand Central)
The book includes testers who lost up to 6 1/2 pounds in a week.
The skinny: Essentially, this is a vegan diet (no meat, dairy, or animal products) that also cuts out foods high on the glycemic index, like bread and sugar. No need to count calories; exercise is optional.
Try this if you don’t mind giving up chicken, eggs, etc., for plants, plants, plants.