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The 17 Day Diet--my impressions

Friday, December 28, 2012

My New Year's resolution is to adhere to a diet for at least a while. I have had 5 months of a vegetarian diet and it's been difficult because even a smallish portion of pasta, potatoes, rice, beans, bread and other mainstays of the diet spin me into a carb trance. It's no longer any good chastising myself for my lack of discipline. So I'm going to take some time off. I've ordered quite a few books from the library and am reviewing them. In the meantime, I will buy anything that I think is quite good.

So...in no particular order, I plan to post my impressions of the "Candidates" to become my diet:

"The 17 Day Diet" has some intriguing aspects. Unlike other low-carb plans, certain veggies are not verboten. I'm glad to see that right from the start it's possible to eat a large number of veggies on the "freebie" list--tomatoes, onions, carrots, and many others. And two servings of fruit are permitted daily from a well-chosen list that seems low on the glycemic index. But the biggest wheat and white carbs are not permitted.

I am glad to see that exercise is mentioned, but it seems simply gimmicky to have 17 minute exercise sessions!

The diet has four cycles, each lasting a seemingly arbitrary 17 days: Accelerate is the most limited, followed by "activate" which adds a few more food options, then "achieve" is 17 days in which you can draw on a wider spectrum of food, but you may not eat any carbs after 2 PM.
Finally, 51 days in, you ARRIVE and then you have a combination of all three cycles to deal with for the rest of your life, aside from planned weekend samplings of your favorite foods (this could be binge-inducing for some people).
The lack of an index is a big draw-back. I decided to look up almonds and avocados, simply to see where they fit in. NO INDEX? So I cannot look up anything.
The idea that you should eat your fruit before 2 PM seems capricious and irrational. Does it really make any difference when you eat a food?

Other things that I like, however, are he has a chapter which includes "special considerations" such as cultural diets--special items are included if you follow an Hispanic, Asian, Mediterrean, Indian, Persian, etc. cuisines. But with the lack of an index it's difficult to know that you can add "polenta" or "risotto" to the "Activate Cycle" although there is no rice listed in the regular "Activate" portion of the book.

This diet is NOT suitable for non-tofu eating vegetarians although I think a pescatarian could make a go of it. For various reasons I don't eat tofu or tempeh. If you do eat those kinds of soy products as a vegetarian, you could probably work it if you are careful about the method of cooking.

Overall, following this diet will make it difficult for you to consume too many calories. I took the quiz at the beginning of the book and it seems to equate eating more healthily and drinking more water and understanding the connections between obesity and disease makes me"ready to be a TOTAL HOTTIE!"

I might hang on to this book for a little while; I have not totally ruled it out but if I find a well-indexed similar book, this one marches back to the library. I also still do not understand the magic of "17" as the perfect number to work with. The inclusion of carrots and tomatoes and two fruits a day is the magic here for me.

Gratuitous picture of grandson included to inspire me.

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    I have not heard of the 17 day diet but from what you described I would go bonkers! I like to read a variety of diet/cook books and find I do better when I pick and choose what I know will work for me. And also what I can stick to for the long run. In the long run I think variety and diversity works the best for most folks. Keep us posted on your experiments. Peace!
    3091 days ago
    IMHO, I think the secret lies in finding a *diet* (way of eating?) that will work for you, whether that be in the short or long-term. If you can't find a diet similar to this one, perhaps you could still follow it, just with some modifications. Good luck! And your grandson is precious.
    3091 days ago
  • POPSY190
    This would test my ability to monitor my choices and I think I'd fail! For me, lifetime sustainability is the key and I think that is why I've settled on Dr Fuhrman's Eat to Live plan. But good luck with whatever you finally decide. emoticon
    3092 days ago
  • no profile photo CD11712373
    Quinoa and Agave have changed my life, lol. I don't know if you are familiar with those but if you aren't please introduce yourself! I'm not a good diet follower so I don't do them. The one thing I'm consistent with is exercising. Build some muscle and burn more fat and calories! I love saying that ;) Here's to a happy new year! emoticon emoticon
    3092 days ago
  • PROT358
    I tried it, only the first cycle, for a short while last year. I did not adhere 100% because I did not find the plan sustainable. I think the 2PM fruit rule is about managing blood sugars, which also explains why more sugary fruits - like a banana - are not allowed in the first cycle. But the first cycle was so restrictive. No canned fruits or veggies, and not all produce is okay. Yes to broccoli but no to carrots. Yes to apples and pears but no to apricots and mango. The first cycle is supposed to strip you of all your dependencies - your "need" for sugar and carbs - and then you rebuild from there. But I could not stick to the plan as intended. I was ravenous and generally unsatisfied, and I didn't like splitting hairs over where foods rank on the glycemic index. I've heard that the right diet for you is the one you can sustain, so it was wrong for me. I've heard others have had great success with it if you're made of the stuff ;) Best of luck to you, and keep us posted!
    3092 days ago
    keep us updated !!!adorable little fellow
    3092 days ago
    It sounds interesting. I need to look into the 17 day diet too.
    3092 days ago
    What a cutie!!!

    I am following more of Perfect Health Diet. "Diet" meaning the things you eat, not "on a diet" Best of luck to you in whatever you decide!!

    Thanks for sharing!


    Smile and Enjoy the Rest of Your Day!
    Melinda (gopintos)
    Perfect Health Diet Team
    Country Living Team
    Dr Oz Show Fans Team
    Wheat Belly Team

    3093 days ago
    What ever diet you settle on, I know that you can do well with. You have proven that you have the discipline to follow through on your active plan. Adorable grandson.
    3093 days ago
    It this diet suitable for vegetarians?

    Your grandson is gorgeous - what a little cutie!
    3093 days ago
    I have heard great things about the 17 day Diet.
    3093 days ago
    My daughter swears by this diet. When she follows it she feels well and loses weight.
    3093 days ago
    I have to have my fruit. That is why I like diets like South Beach and Primal or Paleo. They cut out the junky carbs and leave most fruits and veggies.
    3093 days ago
  • OJ_2_OK
    I'm not sure about the fruit thing however I do know that I usually insert an apple in y day and that gets me through the day because my blood sugar level evens out. And usually it's before two where it would normally drop so maybe that is its intent?
    3093 days ago
  • no profile photo CD12013927
    If this is the way you go, good luck!
    3093 days ago
    3093 days ago
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