Slim for Life By Jillian Michaels Review

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When I released Diet Recovery 2 (99 cents until midnight tonight on Amazon), I had no idea that Jillian Michaels, the devil diet diva herself, would be releasing a book on the exact same day – her new testament of health holiness, Slim for Life.  As you can go ahead and assume, it indeed brought me great joy to see my book edge ahead of hers in the rankings.

But I thought taking the time to read (skim) her new book and write a short review here would bring me, and you, even more joy.

In the beginning of Slim for Life I remained optimistic.  She reminded me much of myself in the beginning of my health exploits, going on and on about eating unprocessed foods and abusing the word “crap” as an adjectified noun to describe anything that wasn’t a whole grain, vegetable, fruit, or meat.

She dazzled me with lots of acronyms.  PCB, HFCS, BPA, and MSG oh my!  But as I continued to read my heart sank lower and lower and lower and lower, until I found it wedged between my toes.

It couldn’t be more appropriate for me to review this book, because Slim for Life and Diet Recovery 2 are almost the exact opposite book.  And it’s all too fitting that the two books have had a chance to square off against one another, at least for a little while (I obviously don’t have the kind of notoriety and fame of Jillian to keep my book hovering up around the Dr. Phils and Bill O’Reilly’s of Amazon’s nonfiction category where it has been the last 2 days - especially not at a price higher than 99 cents).

In this book, Jillian shows just how polluted her mind has become with health mindfulness.  It was a painful, very painful, reminder of just how disordered our society has become around our health and fitness practices.  Jillian makes a huge mistake in presenting literally EVERY little neurotic thing one could ever build up around his or her diet, and then allows the reader to choose what seems most realistic and doable.  It’s this that I found so disheartening.

While it starts out with a strong message that we should eat healthier foods that are unprocessed without a bunch of foreign ingredients, we should eat breakfast and have square meals regularly throughout the day to nourish instead of starve ourselves, don’t eat an extreme low-fat or low-carb diet – sentiments I can swallow in terms of general recommendations, the book quickly devolves into extreme eating disorder territory.  I could see anorexics using this as a guidebook.  It was shocking some of the things I read in this book…

Stand on one leg while you brush your teeth to burn more calories?

Shop with a cart and not a basket because walking upright with a tall posture leads to better resistance against tempting junk foods?

Wear tight clothing to shop at the grocery store to remind yourself of how fat you are and thus choose healthier foods?

Blot the fat off of your food after you cook it?

Get an oil spritzer thing to spray your food with a fine mist of fat to cut back on calories?

Work out with your heart rate over 85% of max up to 6 days a week?

Scrape the bread out of your bagel?  (I swear to Bob Harper she said that)

Dip your fork in salad dressing before you pick up a piece of lettuce while eating a salad, instead of pouring dressing on it?

Never shop for groceries with your kids, or on an empty stomach – because you might come home with Froot Loops (I thought this was particularly funny because I went shopping with a 7-year old last night and strongarmed her into getting Froot Loops instead of what she wanted – Cinnamon Toast Crunch… Froot Loops was BOGO free, who could resist a sale son!)?

About the only thing that got me excited was the segment titled “Be Like Santa.”  I quickly rushed to the kitchen and ate 10 cookies with a tall glass of milk, only to find when I returned that she didn’t mean that at all.  She meant I “should make a grocery list and check it twice.”

These were just a few of the things that jumped out at me.  The rest of the book was filled with tons of that other stuff about burning more calories and taking in fewer.  Lots of that “take the stairs instead of the elevator” and “bring a healthy dish to a party so you can have something healthy to eat” kind of paranoid calorie micromanagement.   While this book, and all books, have some good points,   the whole thing taken in all together was like watching king salmon being clubbed to death.  My eyes got big and I made noises like most do when a linebacker goes helmet-first on a wide receiver.  I enjoyed it but was extremely fortunate the club wasn’t being used on me.  It was entertaining but in a sickening, shameful kind of way is what I’m saying.

If the book, and Jillian in general, have any strong points – it is her typical focus on strength, fitness, mobility, agility, balance, outdoor sports, and just being a vital and vibrant, strong, fit, and confident human being.  That and keeping calories far above the extreme lows recommended by many diet authors, which puts her a small step above the worst of the worst diet scum.  But like I said, you would come away with too much other neurotic and unnecessary, paralyzing information to possibly achieve that.  Not to mention place some recklessly unrealistic and unsustainable expectations upon yourself to suddenly plunge into a puritanical life of clean eating and grueling exercise.

Anyway, Diet Recovery 2′s brief success over Jillian provides at least a small glimmer of hope for the future, when being so obsessive over diet and exercise is no longer congratulated, but frowned upon, like masturbating on an airplane.  And people whose life revolves around what they eat and their body fat percentage gets them nominated for the title of “Biggest Loser.”

And one more for the clever wordplay tally, Jillian’s book shouldn’t be called Slim for Life.  It should be called Life for Slim.

Remember to get DR2 when it’s still less than a buck for another 11 hours or so.  And make the investment on a power toothbrush from Oral B while you’re there…

79 Comments

  1. Heh heh. This is awesome Matt. Re: the fat thing. I was watching Watch What Happens Live the other night and Nigella Lawson was the guest. Someone asked her why she looked so healthy and why did her skin glow.

    She said cuz she eats fat and refused to be afraid of it. And that she isn’t starving.

    Here’s a funny link to a bunch of clips someone edited together of her. It’s so dirty, they call it porn:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RtS2Ikk7A9I

    (here’s hopin I’m first)

    Reply
    • Watching Nigella make food and hearing her talk about it makes me feel like I’m watching classy porn… with delicious food.

      Reply
  2. Awesome! I just bought your book and am excited to read it! :) I hold no place in my heart for Jillian.

    And I absolutely love Nigella! She has some of the best recipes I’ve seen and I loved watching her Food Network show! I think she lost weight awhile back and it happened because she ate less food? I think she still eats saturated fat though, right?

    Reply
    • Oh yeah, and I used to know someone who blotted fat from her potato chips and other foods…yikes. Before that, she modeled in Paris and ate hardly any fat (or food) at all. She said the models she worked around also only drank coffee and that’s just about it…

      She eats more fat now, so she’s getting better. :)

      Reply
      • Awesome Nigella clip Caroline! Loved it.

        Reply
  3. HAHAHAHA. Yea Jillian, just because I brushed my teeth, I’m not gonna snack/eat/ or in the past… binge. Not at all.

    I have never understood that advice. But maybe that is just because I do not prioritize or value teeth-brushing in general…

    Reply
    • I think you missed the fact that the whole video was just a shameful (and oh so delicious) oral-b ad… O_o

      Reply
  4. Matt, I think you are Santa Clause (don’t worry, your secret is safe with us, maybe)…

    Because 1) the cookie thing was a dead giveaway (and hilarious), 2) you bring joy and wonderment and deliver spectacular gifts (ie: your kickass book that I just finished reading today) to all the world! 3) you’re warm (literally) and jolly, and 4) you encourage us to eat like it’s Christmas holidays every day!

    Coincidence?

    Anyhoo, SO HAPPY to see you at #1 on the amazon, whatever the reason and however temporary (so modest, you are). Yay, Santa!!!

    Reply
  5. I’d love to take up on your offer, but it’s only available in Amazon’s US store and not in UK store… :(

    Reply
  6. Hey Matt,
    I just read DR2 foR the second time – yes, it was so good I had to have seconds :). I noticed in the Resources section at the end, not only did you provide a link to Bill Craig’s website (very cool by the way), but you also put a link to Andrew Kim’s blog. I found that interesting in that he is definately a “Peatarian” and I always wondered what you thought of Andrew Kim. What I like about his blog is that he does a better job at explaining “Peat Eating” than old Ray himself, ha!! What are your thoughts Matt?

    Reply
    • Hi I just read some stuff on the Andrew Kim website and it freaked me out. I have
      Been eating lots of starches plantain yams sweet potatoes and tapioca with ghee or coconut To try and put weight on and now I find starches are not good! I seriously don’t know what to eat anymore!

      Reply
      • Heather,

        No need to freak out. Matt would probably say that for some people starches are advantagous but for others it may be sugar (esp in the form of Fruit). Just eat what feels good to you. You may be interested in readfing some of Matt’s blog posts from May 2011 (dubbed Ray May) where Matt dissects some of Peat’s teachings (Andrew Kim is very much influenced by Ray Peat).

        Reply
        • Thanks jonO at the minute I don’t know what feels right. I am constantly hungry and thinking about food! I’ve just eaten a huge lump of cheese with swede and veg and I just feel windy and on edge and burping! I’ll look at the posts you suggested. Do you know where I’d find a list of recommended foods please? Ineed to put on weight and heal!

          Reply
    • On RayPeatForum, Andrew Kim claims to not have read Peat’s articles or books.

      I find that very hard to believe. There is nothing new in Kim’s articles that Ray Peat has not already mentioned in his articles, books or interviews. Kim even recommends raw carrots and oranges, just like Peat.

      Maybe he explains things better because all he had to do was take Peat’s ideas and find published research that supports it, rather than develop ideas of his own.

      Reply
  7. As a woman, it’s hard for me to overstate how offended I am that Jillian Michael’s is heralded as a paragon of good health. Alternative Health gurus with chronic health conditions, for better or worse, are judged and evaluated for it. Not her. She pulls the ‘genetic’ card and paints herself as a victor, even though she had decimated her reproductive system. This is really a how to make yourself sick for life and trigger ‘genetic’ health conditions guide.

    Reply
    • Wellllll, I hear you and agree with you- that she probably unkowingly is perpetuating her PCOS with her restrictive lifestyle at this point. But I actually believe that she thinks that what she is doing is the only way.

      Matt’s method of recovery from Disordered Eating, takes anyone who is only slightly off a very long time to get to…. because the first step is to go “natural diet” after you go on “diet diets”…. and I feel most people need to hit diet or natural diet rock bottom before they are desperate enough to finally believe that calories and carbs are good- and dieting is bad.

      I do not support Jillian’s way of eating/overexercising. But as far as the diet/medical community are concerned- she is doing the “best thing she can” for her PCOS. Little does she know she is stuck in a vicious cycle, and encouraging others to do the same.

      Everyone is oblivious!

      That is the sad part. :-/

      Reply
  8. Ohmygod Ohmygod Ohmygod Ohmygod. Seriously?! An Oral B Powerbrush? For weight loss AND confidence?!? Could anyone who is not watching it just to see how many times she plugged a stupid toothbrush actually get through the whole thing?

    Reply
  9. Wow. That could be the worst advice I’ve ever heard–it sounds like something you’d read an a horrible women’s magazine…it’s really unfortunate that someone with such a big name in the “nutrition” industry would put forth a book full of crap like this. You’re right– it sounds like this book is a recipe for disordered eating, which really sucks.

    Reply
  10. Oh my goodness! I had to stop halfway reading that list of her ‘Things to Do’. So obsessive and neurotic. Made my stomach hurt.

    Reply
  11. Laughed so hard at this, although I don’t even know who this Jillian woman is!

    Reply
  12. Just bought “Diet Recovery 2″. Can’t wait to read it. “Eat for Heat” and the original “Diet Recovery” got me pregnant. Ok, ok, your books didn’t get me pregnant. My husband did that. But after seven months of no ovulation on a very low carb Paleo diet, I became pregnant the same month I began RRARF. So, to me, you kinda are like Santa Claus. You rock Matt Stone!!

    Reply
  13. LOL the Santa bit. Haha. XD

    “Sex House,” a parody of reality TV shows by the Onion, reminds me rather of The Biggest Looser, insofar as it shows people getting voluntarily tortured for the entertainment of others.

    Reply
  14. “About the only thing that got me excited was the segment titled “Be Like Santa.” I quickly rushed to the kitchen and ate 10 cookies with a tall glass of milk, only to find when I returned that she didn’t mean that at all.”

    I’m still LMFAO!!!

    Reply
  15. Sadly, I did pretty much every one of these tricks. And yes they go hand-in-hand with an eating disorder. The only one I skipped was pulling bread out of bagels, because I never could stand wasting food like that, but a lot of my sorority sisters sure did it. It’s endemic now. At a recent work lunch every woman except me blotted her pizza. I sat there with my full fat pizza and regular coke and felt awesome.

    I agree Nigella rules!! What a great role model for women!

    Reply
    • I used to blot pizzas sometimes, way before I was into health and nutrition. Some of those freezer pizzas (and some delivery) are just greasy in a nasty sort of way.

      Reply
  16. I can’t imagine Jill’s publisher would voluntarily send you a review copy…did you have to purchase it yourself? Wasn’t that a bit painful?

    Reply
    • I did. Bought the Kindle version. I had to sell 38 copies of DR 2 at the current price to pay for it. Sad but I enjoyed myself. Worth it all just to find an excuse to post that Oral B toothbrush infomercial video.

      Reply
      • I hope you reviewed it on Amazon.

        Reply
  17. Oh lord, that list of things to do is depressing. They seem to be based in shame, and I bet there’s a study out there about how shame-based approaches to changing behaviour are counterproductive.

    “Scrape the bread out of your bagel?” -I used to work in a bagel shop and got this frequently from lady customers :(

    “Wear tight clothing to shop at the grocery store to remind yourself of how fat you are and thus choose healthier foods? ” -Wow. I just want to give a hug to anyone who actually does this. What a horrible way to live.

    Reply
  18. Yeah standing on one leg to brush your teeth is really going to make a huge difference. But the sad this is I can see very desperate and vulnerable people actually going there. And I know how that feels. I am 5’2″ and over 90kgs. I am trying the recommendations in Diet Recovery because my temps are low – average is about 35.9 and I have the energy of a sloth (although not the transmit times!). But I have begun to put on more weight without any changes in temp and it scares the shit out me. Sometimes I feel that Matt’s work and his followers are people who lie in the ‘normal’ weight range so I would love to hear from really overweight people and how they have managed. Matt, do you still do private consultations???

    Reply
  19. “Brush and floss between meals” – that one’s straight out of the pro-ana blog guide book. :\ Bummer.

    Reply
  20. she really scares me. I hope I never have to encounter her in real life. YIKES!

    Reply
  21. Hi Matt,

    Have you ever read any Charles Eisenstein? He’s written “The Yoga of Eating: Transcending Diets and Dogma to Nourish the Natural Self” and “Transformational Weight Loss” – both of which are anti-diet books (tho in the latter he makes potentially unfortunate food choice claims)

    I don’t agree with 100% of what he says, but he does have some beautiful premises. I think you are slowly moving in a similar direction…

    Here are my two favorite quotes:

    “Imagine a tree growing in rocky soil, next to a cliff, in the shade of bigger trees. To survive it must grow crooked to search out light and water. We wouldn’t call it a bad tree for being crooked though; on the contrary, it is a wonderful tree, a heroic tree. Your body is the same, compensating the best it can.”

    “Know that your body’s shape is its wise response to circumstances that are probably beyond your understanding. Really let it be okay to be as you are. Don’t hide any aspect of your appearance from yourself. Under all the criticisms, let there grow a warm and wonder-filled appreciation for your body, which has done its best, its heroic best, under the circumstances thrust upon it.”

    Reply
    • Great quotes SRS.

      Reply
    • “Transformational Weight Loss” is actually available online to be read for free or for a donation:

      http://www.foodsanity.com

      Reply
    • I really like those quotes. Thanks SRS :)

      Reply
    • I love that second quote I’ll have to look him up. Thank you for sharing!

      Reply
  22. That’s really awkward about the power toothbrush bit. i like using the power toothbrush cos it vibrates lol it feels nice u no where

    Reply
  23. Awesome review. I can’t stand Jillian. I found you via Go Kaleo on facebook. Bought your new book yesterday and excited to read more of it.

    Reply
  24. Lol that video is unparodiable bc its a parody of itself already.

    Reply
  25. Ugh, Matt. I read your book yesterday and it saved me. I swore this year I wouldn’t fall into a diet trap, but I did, I did.
    I got sucked into The Plan. I thought it sounded like it’d be okay, and hey, I would LOVE to finally figure out the foods that are causing inflammation and weight gain, right? She says it is higher calorie and NOT a diet. haha. I lasted over 2 weeks and was DYING when I figured out that it is really just a low carb diet! And it is so hard to really figure everything out that you are reacting to. Plus you are supposed to drink 1/2 your wieght in ounces of water. My brix was dropping to .2 and was starting to be consistently under 2 throughout the WHOLE day. I hadn’t bothered with the refractometer in over a year, but with all this water I wanted to keep tabs. Anyway. It IS a diet! Even though I was eating tons of seeds and olive oil and stuff I was still starving the whole time. But, good news is I’m not scared of eating seeds and olive oil anymore! lol
    Now I’ve got to figure out how to get back in balance again. I didn’t drink any water after breakfast and by lunch time I was exhausted. I just don’t know what to eat.

    Hey Matt, what do you have on your pizza if you don’t do pork?

    Reply
    • Eat anything you want. Pork doesn’t cause problems for some people. The only way to see if a food causes some trouble for you is to eat it and see how you feel without imagaining things. I have always felt fine eating pork and haven’t had the crazy symptoms that some people have described so i just eat it. I reccomend chicken on your pizza with some apricot sauce and cheese it’s really good.

      Reply
    • I hear you about not knowing what to eat. I’m not on a diet per se, but fear of real or imagined food allergies has had huge impact on the variety of food I’ve been eating for the past few years. Basically pork and fried potatoes. I’ve branched out a little lately, and that feels great emotionally and psychologically. I’ve added chocolate chip muffins, chicken, wee bit of beef, white rice on occasion. I still feel limited but I have no clue what I want to eat. Weird. I have hardly any cravings, ever. Or any slight indication of what I might like.

      Reply
  26. Jillian’s adam’s apple is pretty sexy, though…

    Reply
  27. Off topic here…I tried searching the archives for ulcer information and couldn’t find anything, and so I’m wondering if anyone has good information on how to treat it. My husband seems to have it as he’s getting a lot of nausea and pain that’s relieved temporarily after eating, starting 2-3 weeks ago. Before that, he had digestive issues for 3 months or so. He definitely needs to work on getting his metabolism up, but I’m wondering what he should do at the moment to relieve the worst of the discomfort.

    Reply
    • Cayenne Pepper Pills… Sounds crazy, but it’s what works the best… Eating to lose weight, and burning hot peppers to fix ulcers. Only here at 180D health :)

      Reply
      • We did consider cayenne… but he seems very averse to it (even though he loves spicy foods).

        I’m wondering if lots of coffee is bad for ulcers. He has a long commute and works third shift, so he drinks a few cups a day/night.

        Reply
        • Averse to the idea of a cayenne pill? It gives a warm burn for about 30 mins (not as bad as the ulcer itself)… and then the pain greatly subsides from both. The other thing to try would be raw apple cider vinegar. Can get it in pill too… But some people swear by drinking it. Can do baking soda for the pain (also confirms if it’s acid eating away), but you don’t want to do it around meals or you lose your stomach acid and move backwards. It’s “caused” by the H. Pylori, but plenty of stomachs have it with no ulcers. When you’re stressed it lowers your metabolic rate (duh) and stomach lining does not regenerate fast enough.

          Reply
          • Thanks! Do cayenne with meals or not? Has to be pills, or just add to foods?

          • I put cayenne in warm/hot water and drink it.
            Just put the amount in you can tolerate.
            I built up to a teaspoon in a cup of water

          • Pills or not is fine… I’d do it with meals at first… and start small… There’s a couple different strength levels you can buy. Without meals is fine, but it will burn more. Not sure if taking it with a meal dilutes it to a point where it’s less effective though.

    • Edible clay is incredibly soothing and healing at the same time, for absolutely any stomach issue – nausea, colitis, vomiting, pain…whatever

      I use the “edible earth” by magnetic clay- expensive but i can confirm that it is powerful and also contains quite a lot of minerals.

      http://www.magneticclay.com/store/edible-earth-clay-supplement-12.aspx

      Read about clay on the net and you’ll be impressed.

      Reply
  28. The price went up before midnight..i had a problem buying it earlier today and went to purchase at 11:00 but the price was already up to 9.99. I really wanted to get this for my sister, can i still get the.99 cents price?

    Reply
    • Yes of course. Rob changed the price a little early and I’m sure he’ll happily send you a pdf after he’s done kicking himself in the forehead.

      Reply
      • Sorry Sarah- sent you an email.

        Amazon changed the price sooner than intended. My apologies!

        Reply
        • Thanks so much for sending it! I have an identical twin sister who is constantly frustrated by her weight but I’m sure her yoyo dieting is part of the problem. Question for Matt…do you think that these strategies work even when medications that alter hormones like birth control are in the picture?

          Reply
  29. I too tried to buy the new book and was disappointed to see the price had already changed. By my clock it is only 9:27 mountain time, which is only 11:27 eastern…

    Reply
    • Rob will take care of you when he sees this. Anyone else who had a problem buying prior to midnight please send an email to rob@180degreehealth.com and he will get you all squared away.

      Reply
  30. Hey Heather,

    Sent an email.

    As above, Amazon changed the price sooner than intended- my apologies!

    Reply
  31. I hear the crack of the bat…homerun, brutha! hahahaha!!

    Reply
  32. Is she talking about health and fitness or making a commercial for the power brush??

    Who does she think we are? Morons? This type of tactic does not work on me !!

    Anyways, I’m off to brush my teeth. It’s a shame my old tooth brush is so sucky.

    Reply
    • Nice one, Lana!

      Reply
  33. Can’t/won’t watch the vid – the use of repetition with dramatic amping up of emotions = hypnosis. Don’t want it or need it, thank you very much. FU, Jillian, and your little toothbrush, too!

    Reply
  34. I hope you were able to get your heart out of your toes. that must hurt like a mofo.
    xo
    hag

    Reply
  35. Jesus, could she be any more over the top with her sales pitch?

    And did I actually hear her say this… “Plus, when dieting, we don’t always get the variety of nutrients we need to support our bodies properly.” Haha, ok, sign me up!

    Reply
  36. She sounds and acts like a guy. That’s a turn off. As for the toothbrush. That makes no difference. I have fantastic teeth and don’t use an electric one. Yes don’t processed junk is right or stuff with high fructose corn syrup and transfats. America does not get it. You don’t go on a diet. You make a lifestyle change. It’s not about releasing weight. It’s about keeping it off permanently. You cannot do that without it being a lifestyle. You have to be able to eat at a wedding or an outing. It doesn’t mean you eat like a pig. You eat a tiny bit. You don’t need to exercise 6 days a week. You can easily do an hour 4 times a week. The body needs a rest. Fresh foods are the key for some peoples bodies. It’s not dieting that we don’t get the proper nutrients for out bodies. That is no matter what we eat. Our soil is not nutrient dense anymore. This is why we need to utilize supplements. Food needs to have flavor use spices. If it doesn’t taste good you will not keep the lifestyle change.

    Reply
  37. She’s skinny. People like her. Well, I guess….. She has that Health Police thing happening which seems to be really in since the 2000s. People like being bossed around and told how to live.

    Reply
  38. Just found this site this morning. I really like it. I have struggled with weight all my life – starving, overexecising and getting fatter and fatter…hmmmmmm….
    Appreciate the commentary on the Massachusetts Fat Letters (I nearly cried when I heard about them)….I am sad to be a MASShole…..It’s funny, but you really have to have a schtick to get rich in this area. I was reading about a book called “Wheat Belly” about how wheat is causing the obestity “epidemic”. The zealots who have tried the plan swear by it, but I thought it odd that you don’t just cut out wheat, but all carbs :) Dr. Atkins must be rolling in his grave at this “New” science…..
    Keet up the good work, Matt…but find a schtick :)

    Reply
  39. Is there any reason to avoid low fat diets from a metabolic viepoint?

    Carbohydrates increase Thyroid and leptin signaling and increases metabolism. Stop eating carbs and your body will utilize protein to make carbohydrates. Carbohydrates also fuel the muscles glycogen stores allowing for greater strenght and intense workouts.

    Dietary fat on the other hand has no metabolic function besides acting as a calorie source. , the body can easily make the fat it needs from carbohydrates and the very small amounts thats needed from so called essential fatty acids can easily be met from consuming a some seeds and nuts.

    In essence carbohydrates goes to muescle while fat goes to your spare tires. If you google the primal poatatoe diet you will find there is a growing consensus even among former low carb dieters that it is infact dietary fat that is the problem. There are several threads over at Marks Daily Apple on the potatoe diet experiments describing fat loss wich can hardly be attributed solely to caloric restriction. I have personaly gained muscle and lost fat while increasing my carbohydrate intake. I never had great workouts while eating copious amounts of fat and reducing carbs.

    The sciences is on the low fat side.

    Reply
    • The potato diet weight loss rate is largely attributable to loss of lean tissue. You often see people switching to vegan diets and losing 30 pounds in a month, thinking that is all fat. That is a lengthy issue though – one which I hope to write a post on in the future. The short story is that if you are losing muscle you can lose a pound per 600 calorie deficit, as opposed to fat which drops at a rate of 1 pound per 3500 calorie deficit, roughly. Anything that increases the preferential burning of muscle tissue to body fat will increase the rate of WEIGHT, not fat, loss. Those doing the potato hack are foolish not to supplement protein, which would slow down the rate of weight loss tremendously by preventing the lean tissue losses.

      As for a low fat diet, the primary reasons to eat a substantial amount of fat for metabolism is:

      1) Adds calorie density – very important for getting the warming effect from food
      2) Adds palatability – very important for eating adequate calories to fuel metabolism

      Theoretically, with those two factors eliminated, the ultimate metabolism-stimulating diet would probably contain 0 grams of fat per day. But unfortunately those 2 factors cannot be removed. But you can address those two “glitches” in a low-fat diet by adding more calorie-dense foods like dried fruit – dates especially, choosing sweeter fruits with a lower water content like bananas over other fruits, and eating some dry starches like breads, crackers, rice cakes, etc.

      You may also find this old relic of a post interesting, and help to describe your changes in body composition switching to a higher carb diet…

      http://180degreehealth.com/2010/06/maximum-nutrient-partitioning

      Reply
      • Hi Matt,

        I’ve just finished reading Diet Recovery 2 and am encouraged, confused, and, to be totally honest, a little scared. I’ve read a lot of comments from blog posts (as well as the blogs, of course) and there seem to be a lot of people who have been at normal weights dieted down, etc.

        My story is a little different: I was a heavy kid and grew heavier and heavier until I reached my mid-twenties and started exercising and eating a little healthier (basically less soda and less fast food) and then I turned into a crazed gym person and was eating every other day. And then my mom told me that she was proud of me for losing some weight but that my hair looked thin and terrible. Sooooooo I started low carb. That worked, but then became totally unmaintainable as I would gain weight even thinking about carbs. Then, I found Paul Jaminet’s PHD. I feel as though I’ve been in mini-recovery over the last year with PHD because eating potatoes and rice has been so therapeutic. I haven’t seen a ton of weight loss (MAYBE 10 lbs over the course of a year, but my body composition is much, much better as many people have assumed (incorrectly) that I’ve lost a ton of weight.
        Anyway, I was probably 300lbs or more at my heaviest. I was down to 211ish, but I was freezing cold all the time, so I started RRARFing. I’ve since gained about 13 lbs (in almost two weeks) and am a little freaked out despite having read that weight gain is normal. It’s not so much vanity that’s causing my freak out as much as I KNOW I was unhealthy at 300lbs–and at 300lbs I was basically eating what and how much I wanted. And generally, I feel much better right now (normal cycles, and mostly normal body functions) except for the freezing cold hands and feet stuff.

        I really think that regulating what I drink has helped a ton. I sleep through the night and have higher temps during the day…but I’d really like to drop some more weight for health reasons and reading through the book I was left a little stymied. I still eat a fair amount of butter, etc. because for me, eating bread without butter is (and has always been) unappetizing. As I read above, maybe it’s better to try to cut down on some of the fat? But then doesn’t that sort of defeat the purpose of diet recovery?

        I’ve read a testimonial from a lady who was extremely overweight who lost weight doing this. But for someone who has lost weight and is trying to make the switch to having a healthy metabolism and still eventually take off the excess weight, can I have it both ways? Can I hope to lose weight after this? Like I said, I’m right around 223 right now, up over the last two weeks from 211ish. 211 for a 5’5” woman isn’t ideal even though it’s better than 300. My goal is not “ideal weight” but a more moveable, flexible, healthier me.

        Maybe I need to try a consult after I’ve given this 30 days. Anyway, thanks for listening.

        Reply

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