The Oprah Diet, which is actually titled "You on a Diet," is the diet that talk show host Oprah Winfrey endorses. The plan was created by Dr. Mehmet Oz and Dr. Michael Roizen. The doctors studied people who successfully lost weight and kept it off and used the results to frame their diet plan.
The You On a Diet plan is more about living a healthy lifestyle than it is about eying the scale. The book is heavy on information about basic body biology, explaining how putting certain foods into your body affects internal processes and functions. It also explains why making small, gradual changes are better in the long run. As noted by Dr. Oz and Dr. Roizen, people who cut 400 calories a day are less successful with weight maintenance than those who cut 100 calories a day. The overall premise is to help you understand the ins and outs of your body. Once you know how your body works, making better choices is easier--and sustainable.
The plan is pretty simple, as outlined below:
- Eat three meals each day plus snacks
- Limit simple carbohydrates (like refined sugar and white flour) and unhealthy fats (like saturated fats and trans fats)
- Eat whole grains and lean types of meat
- Eat moderate amounts of healthy fats (like monosaturated and polyunsaturated fats--think avocados, nuts and olive oil)
- Make sure your snacks are healthy (fruits, vegetables, nuts and low-fat dairy products are encouraged)
- Avoid eating three hours prior to going to bed
- Exercise each day
The first step in the plan is to do a clean sweep of your kitchen. Toss any foods containing the following ingredients: hydrogenated oil, sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, enriched flour and bleached flour.
The diet emphasizes the importance of eating breakfast. For breakfast and lunch you should eat the same meal (with slight deviations) daily. Dinner is the time to explore your options. Dessert can be eaten every other day, and all meals should contain moderate-sized portions. And, of course, you should eat slowly and only to the point that you're full--not stuffed.
Things to Consider
The authors are well respected in their field and help you to better understand your body's relationship with food. This diet is easy to follow and maintain and there aren't any gimmicks. You learn how to live a healthy lifestyle and pay attention to how your clothes fit, not what the number on the scale reads.
This diet can be monotonous, especially when it comes to breakfast and lunch. Besides the specifics concerning your body's biology, the diet information contained in this plan is basically common sense: eat healthy foods and exercise for the best weight loss results. Don't expect fast results.
The only tried and true way to lose and maintain your weight is to eat a well-balanced diet and to exercise regularly, which is exactly what this plan promotes. You will see results with this diet, but not overnight. Overall, it's one of the more reasonable diet plans on the market.