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The Pritikin Principle: The Calorie Density Solution Hardcover – June, 2000

4.3 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

After years of ultra-low-fat eating schemes, high-protein plans, and fad diets, a new diet mentality is dawning. Diet gurus are preaching what many nutrition experts have suspected all along: calories count.

The Pritikin Principle: The Calorie Density Solution is one example of the new camp of sensible weight-loss plans. Follow the plan and you should lose weight, feel satisfied, and improve your overall health. Plus, the plan is straightforward and easy to use. The Pritikin Principle is based on learning the caloric density of foods (the number of calories in a given weight of food) and eating meals with a low caloric density. You don't need to count calories; just choose meals with a low caloric density. An extensive Caloric Density Index, restaurant guide, flexible meal plans, and more than 50 recipes show you how to lower the caloric concentration of meals without going hungry. Exercise tips, health information, and success stories are also included. Written by Robert Pritikin, director of the renowned Pritikin Longevity Center and son of founder Nathan Pritikin, along with a team of registered dietitians, The Pritikin Principle is filled with practical, sound advice you can live with for life. --Ellen Albertson

From the Publisher

From one of the world's premiere authorities on health and wellbeing, here is a scientifically-proven strategy for losing weight, feeling more energetic, and preventing - or even reversing - major illnesses such as diabetes and hypertension. The Pritikin Principle will show you how to choose and combine foods with a low concentration of calories, so you can fill up on less food and drop excess pounds easily and permanently.

* Plan three full meals - and two snacks - every day, and lose 2-7 pounds a week * Use the Pritikin Calorie Index to select low-calorie density foods in grocery stores and restaurants * Learn how combining some foods actually reduces their overall calorie density * Try more then 50 delicious recipes, all used and tested at the Pritikin Longevity Center

Put an end to yo-yo weight loss and gimmicky fad diets. With THE PRITIKIN PRINCIPLE, you can achieve your goals in a completely healthy, manageable way - once and for all.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 210 pages
  • Publisher: Time Life Education; First Edition edition (June 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0737016167
  • ISBN-13: 978-0737016161
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 6.8 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #927,591 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I picked up this book three weeks ago after reading an article about it in the Readers Digest. Everything in the book made so much sense to me. Following the program, I lost 10 pounds in the first two days and have taken off 22 pounds in the first three weeks. My ankles no longer swell from retained water, and I have dropped a complete pant size. I still have a lot to lose, but this program is so easy to follow that I don't think staying on it will be any problem at all!
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Format: Hardcover
This is quite simply the most important diet book ever written. Pritikin's "Calorie Density" theory is the true explanation of weight gain and loss. Other diets succeed or fail depending on whether they are low calorie density, which is why Atkins had to come up with such complicated good carb, bad carb logic on his maintenance diets.
The theory is rather simple: people tend to eat the same amount of food every day (3 pounds). What determines whether they gain or lose weight is the number of calories in that three pounds of food. Those who eat high calorie foods gain weight. Those who eat low calorie foods lose weight.
What makes a food high calorie? Forget everything you've ever heard because the truth is surprising. The more water in the food, the lower calorie it will be. That's because there are no calories in water (0 calories / gram). Fiber is the next best thing at 0 or 1 calorie per gram. The more fiber the better. Protein and carbohydrates are in the middle. They have 4 calories per gram. The real problem is fat, which has 9 calories per gram, twice as much as carbohydrates and protein. Fat is the biggest enemy of the dieter because it is so loaded with calories.
Pritkin's method is very simple. Weigh the food you eat and count the number of calories. As long as calories per pound is less than 400 you will lose weight. Calories per pound between 400 and 600 leads to weight maintenance. More than 600 calories per pound causes weight gain. (The only trick is that for liquids count just the calories, not the weight. Which means avoid liquids which have more than a few calories.)
Nothing else matters, according to Pritikin. The glycemic index is worthless, and weight gain has nothing to do with insulin rushes or food intolerances.
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Format: Hardcover
I picked up this book five days ago and read through it that night. In the last four days I have lost close of four pounds and it has been easy. Simply followed suggestion to add more vegetable and water based foods to my diet. Now fill up on salads and soups or a vegetable dish. Then use a smaller amount of a meat and/or starch that is healthly made. Never feel hungry. I found that I really need to each every two hours though. Nice to know that I don't have to feel hungry. I have also taken up running although Pritikan says all you have to do is walk. Really a life saver.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book should not be considered a typical diet book. It is, instead, a guide to understanding different food categories and how they affect weight and health. We all know--because we hear it all the time--that by eating right and exercising we will lose weight and stay healthy. This is simply fact. Once calorie density is understood, it becomes easy to determine which foods to choose and the best combinations in which to eat them. There's no guess work once you understand the calorie density concept--you won't have to apply point values to anything; you won't have to eliminate entire categories of sensible foods from your diet. You will begin to notice weight loss within two weeks--even if you haven't exercised--and you'll feel good because you know you've consciously contributed to your own well being. Knowing that you are in control of your own health and well being, you will regain self-confidence, and you will actually WANT to exercise (start by walking). The concepts learned in this book will be easy to live by for the rest of your life.
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Format: Hardcover
I enjoyed the original Pritikin Principle book published in 1973 so I was looking for an updated version. This is NOT it.
The author (the son of the original Pritikin author) seems to be fluffing up the book by repeating many concepts several times without adding any new information. The book stresses calories and doesn't give much space to other important dietary considerations such as sodium and caffeine.
Another problem is that the author never explains how to calculate the calorie density of food. It does list calorie densities of many foods, but it omits many, many more.
If you must read this book, buy it used. Better yet, buy the original 1973 book if you can find it.
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Format: Hardcover
Nathan Pritikin's Leukemia was caused by the radiation treatments he received as a child. (I think that his doctors irradiated his thyroid.) The radiation levels used back in those days were thought to be safe, because the harmful effects didn't show up until decades later. We now know differently.

In the late 1950s, Nathan Pritikin was diagnosed with heart disease. Soon after, he adopted a low-fat, high-fiber diet and began a moderate exercise program. Subsequent medical examinations revealed dramatic improvements in his health.

The autopsy done after he died showed that his arteries were *clean*. This was the final proof that the diet and exercise program he urged others to follow had worked for him, too!

I have no connection with Nathan Pritikin's family or the Pritikin Longevity Center. I've read several books written by Nathan Pritikin or his son, Robert Pritikin, and I'm trying to adhere to the diet and exercise program they recommend. It takes discipline, but the results are worth it!
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