Can You Really Lose 10 Pounds In 3 Days On The Military Diet
The 3 Day Military Diet meal plan promises that you can lose up to 10 pounds in three days. On day 1 of the 3 Day Military Diet meal plan you consume around 1,400 calories, on day 2 around 1,200 calories, and on day 3 around 1,000 calories, although realistically, most of that weight is likely due to fluid loss and not the desired fat loss. Additionally, to achieve the proposed loss, exercise is only suggested but not required in the 3 Day Military Diet meal plan – a key factor in sustained and successful weight loss plans.
A diet plan that restricts your caloric intake to eating less than 1,000 calories each day has the potential to lower metabolism so when you resume a normal diet you gain the weight back even faster.
Day Military Diet: Does The Military Diet Work
Shutterstock/ ALyssa Zolna
The newly popular three-day Military Diet is blowing up the interwebs after being pegged as the quickest way to lose 10 pounds in a week. But dietitians say it’s straight-up crazy. The diet consists of three days of seemingly random guidelines followed by four days off the plan. You can supposedly repeat the process for weeks at a time.
On day one, breakfast is one cup of coffee or tea, a slice of toast, and a half-cup of canned tuna. On day two, dinner is two hot dogs , a cup of broccoli, one-half cup of carrots, half a banana, and one-half cup of vanilla ice cream. No snacks allowed. You get the drift.
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Though the diet claims that following the three-day plan with four days of eating 1,500 calories of whole foods will keep your metabolism running on high, that’s a big, fat lie, says Ferraro.
On the diet, you’ll be bringing your calorie intake down to about 1,100 per day, according to Ferraros analysis. The problem with cutting calories this low is that it sends your body into starvation mode,” she says.
Check out our timeline of crazy weight-loss trends throughout history:
Calories Too Low To Exercise
Eating fewer than 1,400 calories on diet days may make it challenging to do exercise, especially any high-intensity activities.
Eating enough calories on the 4 days off will allow people to exercise more easily. However, proponents of the diet recommend sticking to fewer than 1,500 calories on these days too.
One looking at alternate day calorie restriction , also called intermittent fasting, found that combining ADCR with exercise led to greater weight changes than either dieting or exercise alone.
Following a VLCD can prevent people from exercising at all.
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Calories For Day Two: Approx 1200
1 egg: 75 calories 1 slice of toast: 120 calories 1/2 banana: 50 calories 1 cup of cottage cheese: 230 calories 2 hot dogs : 350 calories 1 hard boiled egg: 75 calories 1/2 cup of carrots: 25 calories 1 cup of broccoli: 35 calories 1/2 banana: 50 calories 5 saltine crackers: 70 calories 1/2 cup of vanilla ice cream: 150 calories
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How Much Weight Can You Lose On The 3 Day Military Diet
One week of following the diet plan is said to enable you to lose up to 10 pounds most of this will be water weight.
But, everyone is different. Weight loss depends on lots of different factors including the persons metabolism and diet before starting the plan.
You probably wont be shedding 10 pounds every week most dieticians suggest losing just one-two pounds per week is a healthy way to lose weight.
What Do You Eat On The Military Diet
The plan has a strict list of foods for the three days you follow it, featuring items like fruit, meat, cheese, and even ice cream, hot dogs, and saltines. On the other four days, youre free to pick your own meals. Vegan or vegetarian? The site also offers a plan for those who avoid animal products, and you can also find substitution suggestions if youre not a fan of whats on the menu or youre allergic to something listed.
While the people behind the military diet mention that the selected foods help rev up your metabolism and burn fat, Bruning says shes skeptical. The website claims its the combination of certain types of food that will catalyst weight loss or specifically fat loss, but theres nothing in hot dogs and ice cream that will help you lose fat, she says. It all comes down to the total amount of calories youre eating.
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Is There Anything Else To Note
Bruning points out that although this is called the military diet, it doesnt have a tie to the actual military. If someone is thinking that they should do this because the people in the military do it and so it must work, they might want to know that theres no reference or evidence to tie it to the military, she says.
How Diet Misinformation Spreads
Due to our democratic process, we have a wide-open information environment in the US, said Brian Southwell, editor of a new book on fake news called Misinformation and Mass Audiences. Theres no careful censoring of false information.
Add to that the fact that science still doesnt have the perfect solution for weight loss and maintenance, he said, and youve got an area that is ripe for exploitation.
These dieting sites have a catchy name, the promise of lineage to established institutions, and that is what tends to spread across the Internet, instead of a peer-reviewed study, said Southwell, who directs the Science in the Public Sphere program at the nonprofit research group RTI International. And just like direct mail, if you get 5% of people to click through, you can make a huge profit. It doesnt cost much to unleash stuff online.
Drayer agreed. I think a lot of people just want to know the next dieting magic bullet, quick fix, and they just go for these fad things.
But why are so many of us fooled in the first place?
The failure of some peoples BS detectors when they encounter fake information can be explained, Southwell said, by what science now knows about how the brain processes data. Instead of sorting the good from bad as the information arrives, the brain accepts it all, and then in another part of the brain, its tagged as true or false.
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There Are No Studies On The 7
Even though this eating plan is not based on evidence, proponents have testimonies that prove it works, claiming that the results are due to the combination of different foods in the 7 day diet plan menu. According to these claims, the foods consumed increase metabolism and burn fat. However, these claims have never been scientifically tested.
Claim : Promotes Rapid Weight Loss
Sure, lots of people might notice a difference on the scale when they complete a cycle of the military diet. That being said, theres no magic here, Dr. Kitchin notes. Any extreme, restricted-calorie diet can lead to weight loss. The initial 2 to 4 pounds people shed on crash dietsthis one includedoften reflect the loss of water weight, Dr. Kitchin explains. When the body runs out of fuel from food, it taps into glycogen stores in the muscles and liver for energy. Since glycogen is bound with water in the bodys tissues, people lose water weight as they torch through that supply. Generally, water weight returns when normal eating patterns resume.
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Healthy Ways To Lose Fast
Lets face it. We still want a quick way to lose 5 or 10 pounds fast, just in time for that special occasion. Is it possible to do so in a healthy way?
I will prescribe a modified three-day diet just to jump-start weight loss, Drayer said. I typically recommend increasing your water intake and eliminating all starchy carbs like breads, pasta, cereal and rice, as well as sweets and treats for one week. Doing this not only cuts calories, but you also shed some extra water too, which can be motivating as the numbers on the scale go down.
For those who drink their calories, Drayer recommends slashing sugary beverages such as sodas, flavored lattes, fruit juices and smoothies, as the calories from these beverages can really add up.
Benefits Of The Military Diet
The military diet has been around for years but has never been scientifically studied or proven safe and effective. There is no evidence to support the fast action of this low-calorie diet plan. However, the verdict remains the same amongst faithful military dieters: it is a quick way to lose weight.
Some of the benefits of the military diet include:
- It is easy and affordable: Other than the rigorous planning that goes into striking a balance across all meals for the 3-day length of your fasting, there isnt much preparation needed to begin the military diet. You do not need to pay hundreds of dollars for a subscription fee to help you along the way. The approved foods are easy to purchase and can be gotten from the nearby grocery store.
- Structured plan: The military diet already has a pre-made plan that details your meals for the duration of your diet. It helps you to plan your meals quickly.
- Lose weight in a short time: Like the military diet promises, it might help you lose weight in no time.
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Are Food Swaps Allowed
If youre allergic to peanuts, lactose, dairy, or gluten, feel free to make food swaps while on the military diet.
Almond butter is a good substitute for peanut butter on this diet.
Hummus and almond butter, for example, are good substitutes for peanut butter. Vegans can replace tuna with tofu, almonds, Portobello mushrooms, or lentils as long as they dont exceed their daily calorie allotments. If youre a vegetarian, swap tuna and meat for chicken, cottage cheese, or other types of fish.
Tofu is a good replacement for dairy on the military diet.
Those who are allergic to milk and dairy can opt for tofu and soy, almond, or hemp milk. Avocado can replace eggs. If you have a gluten allergy, eat rice cakes or quinoa. Beware that couscous isnt gluten-free.
Most foods allowed on the military diet can be replaced with other products. The key is to eat just the right amount in order not to exceed your calorie goals. Feel free to swap ice cream for yogurt, apples for plums or zucchini, eggs for nuts, seeds or even bacon, and toast for seeds or whole grains.
Make sure you get the math right. Weigh your food and determine the exact number of calories in each serving. Avocado, for instance, is higher in calories than hard-boiled eggs.
A hard boiled egg has 77.7 calories.
Does The Military Diet Work
To date, there are no research studies demonstrating the efficacy of the military diet. However, a calorie deficit is required for weight loss, so theoretically, its possible to lose weight on the military diet provided your metabolic needs exceed the number of calories youre consuming .
However, the military diet purports that participants can lose up to 10 pounds in a week. Its important to note that this is neither healthy nor true fat loss.
While perhaps some people lose 10 pounds according to the scale, much of this is just water weight rather than fat loss. In order to lose one pound of body fat, you have to create a deficit of 3500 calories, which essentially means that you have to eat 3,500 calories less than you burn. Therefore, in order to lose 10 pounds of fat, you have to create a 35,000-calorie deficit per week. This equals to 5,000 calories per day, which is frankly nearly impossible. You would have to be exercising intensely for the majority of the day and consuming next to nothing, which would not be sustainable, advisable, or at all healthy. So, although you can lose weight and lose some fat on the military diet, much of the downward movement you see on the scale is a loss of water from consuming less salt, sugar, alcohol, processed food, and overall food mass.
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Why You Should Not Do The Military Diet And What To Do Instead
We all want instant gratification. Unfortunately when it comes to fitness and diet, instant gratification will always fail you.
Short term changes only lead to short term results and heartbreak.
IF YOU ARE GOING TO DO THE MILITARY DIET: Godspeed, soldier.
Good luck with your 7 days, and let me know how it goes in the comments below.
My only request: use those 7 days to learn about yourself and nutrition , and do what you can implement permanent adjustments to how you choose to eat after.
Id imagine most people who do this diet are hoping for a permanent fix with minimal work in just a few days time, and Im here to caution you against that line of thinking.
LIFE DONT WORK THAT WAY.
DONT DO THE MILITARY DIET. DO THIS INSTEAD:
- Eat a damn vegetable every once and awhile. Yes, even if you hate them.
- Cut out liquid calories like soda and juice . Drink water, black coffee, tea, or diet soda.
If you can eat real food, minimize liquid calories, and eat veggies, and do so consistently for months and months youre going to have permanent success.
Making these changes too tough to do permanently? Change fewer things!
Start thinking in terms of days and years, not weeks and months:
Try one meal, based on REAL food. Forget the crackers and ice cream.
If you want a strict diet to follow with rules, create your own.
Or find one that already exists.
Back to the post: You dont need to do the Military Diet.
The people in the military certainly dont.
Diet And West Loss Mistakes And How To Avoid Them
But once the low-calorie period is over, the effects of eating more calories are likely to come back with a vengeance. Personally, a low-calorie diet is nothing new, and also is just not realistic or sustainable, Rothenberg argues. For most people, adhering to the diet is extremely difficult.
Plus, if youre over the age of 50, extremely low-calorie diets could be dangerous, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases .
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What Exactly Is The Military Diet
According to Healthline, the Military Diet essentially involves a 3-day meal plan, followed by 4 days off.
It gets its name The Military Diet because some proponents have claimed that Military Nutritionists developed the program to help prospective soldiers lose weight.
This has been proven false by numerous sources, but the myth is still routinely perpetuated.
What Is The Military Diet
The military diet is a fad diet that claims to help you lose weight quickly up to 10 pounds in a week and 30 pounds in a month by limiting calories and speeding up your metabolism.
The military diet is high in protein and low in total calories, fat, and complex carbohydrates. The metabolic boost is said to come from consuming certain combinations of foods prescribed in the meal plan.
The military diet is all about changing what you eat and drink. It is a free program and there are no supplements to take or specific products to buy.
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The Remaining Four Days Of The Week
While this eating plan consists of four days off, that doesnt mean your eating plan will fall by the wayside. In fact, the Military Diet offers its own recommendations via a four-day-off menu plan” that consists of 1,500 calories a day . You are still restricted to the same food lists, but you can add two snacks into your day.
The Military Diet also recommends that you only eat up to 1,500 calories during these four days if you actually burn this amount in a given day. The plan recommends you figure out your estimated calories burned by multiplying your body weight by 12. Just know that this formula is imperfect. The best way to determine calories burned is by accounting for your age, weight, height, gender, and physical activity level, notes the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.
Once youve cycled through the strict three days and slightly less restrictive four days of this diet plan, you have the option of starting over. However, experts do not recommend doing so.