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The Fast Metabolism Diet: Eat More Food and Lose More Weight Hardcover – April 9, 2013
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Q&A with Haylie Pomroy
Q. Why is metabolism so important?
A. First of all, metabolism isn’t a thing—it’s a process! It’s how your body converts food into either fuel or body substance (muscle, fat, bone, blood). If you have a fast metabolism, your body easily processes nutrients into heat and energy, or into creating a strong body. If you’ve got a slow metabolism, you’re storing—instead of burning—and more of your food ends up stuck to your thighs and belly as fat. The good news is that you can CHANGE your metabolism by eating the right foods.
Q. In the book you talk about the importance of switching up what you eat and how it can help you lose weight. Can you explain?
A. To start fixing your broken-down metabolism and lose weight, you’ve got to re-train it: You have to confuse it to lose it. And by eating the right nutrient-dense whole foods on the right days and at the right times, that’s exactly how you’ll get your metabolism burning fast and hot, like it should be.
It sounds like magic, but it’s really just good, solid science. The book is the product of 20 years of clinical experience, of helping people lose weight and keep it off. It’s worked for my clients—many of them athletes and celebrities—and it can work for you too. Each phase of the diet—and the specific foods within that phase—sets off precise reactions in your body, coaxing it to unlock and burn fat. It’s the constant switcheroo that forces your metabolism to get going again!
- Phase One focuses on fruit and whole grains
- Phase Two emphasizes alkalizing veggies and lean proteins
- Phase Three balances proteins, veggies, fruit, and whole grains, plus healthy fats
Q. And I don’t have to count calories?
A. Nope! Your metabolism doesn't count calories and neither should you, as long as you follow the diet's guidelines for which foods to eat and when to eat them. A "calorie" has nothing to do with your weight or metabolism; it's actually a unit of measure—the amount of energy it takes to raise the temperature of one gram of water one degree Celsius!
Q. Is this diet really for everybody?
A. The Fast Metabolism lifestyle is the way we SHOULD be eating all the time, not just for the 28-day course of the diet! With The Fast Metabolism Diet, you'll learn healthy eating habits that will improve your physical and mental well-being, no matter how much weight you need to lose. There's plenty of flexibility for working around food allergies or sensitivities, and any other restrictions imposed by medical conditions.
Q. So you're saying real food, not processed is the way to go?
A. We eat only real food on the Fast Metabolism Diet. Nothing fake, nothing with an ingredient list as long as your arm. Fat-free and sugar-free diet junk are off the table too. The diet lists healthy portion sizes too—you’ve got to fuel that metabolism. And you won’t go hungry. In fact, many of my clients are surprised how much food they get to eat.
So say bye-bye to frozen low-cal dinners and fat-free “diet” foods. That’s fake food—it’s just a load of chemicals that drag down your metabolism.
Luckily, real food is really pretty easy. The Fast Metabolism Diet book includes more than 50 super-simple recipes—including family favorites like my Slow-Cooker Chili and Pepperoncini Pork Roast—that you can tailor to your preferences and cooking style.
Q. So what happens after I've reached my goal?
A. Learn how to live the Fast Metabolism lifestyle! Once you create your fast metabolism, you get to use it! Enjoy barbecues, birthday parties, holiday feasts—and really enjoy them. With the Fast Metabolism Diet, you’ll learn how to keep that metabolic fire roaring so you can handle every diet curve life throws your way. By the time you hit your goal weight, you'll have built exactly the habits you need to live a balanced, food-loving life. You don't have to follow the phases anymore (although you can). Just follow the diet's rules for maintenance and remember the true meaning of "DIET": Did I Eat Today?
“This is not a fad diet. It’s a medically proven method of food as medicine to fight obesity, cure chronic illness, and heal a broken metabolism. Haylie’s years of experience and wisdom blends the perfectly delicious plan to create revolutionary results.”
-Dr. Jacqueline Fields M.D.
"Without question, Haylie is the biggest celebrity weight loss guru… period. And here's the reason so many stars and athletes flock to her: it works, and it's easy. Unlike all of the "quick-fix" gimmicks and fad diets, the weight STAYS off. I dropped 25 lbs. in the first month, and 10 more after, all with great food, and no counting calories. I call her my witch (the good kind). It's not magic, but it sure feels like it."
-David Swift, CEO Swift Entertainment
"As I was reading The Fast Metabolism Diet I felt like the kid from Chorus Line who sang 'I can Do That.' So I'm doing the diet and watching the 2O ugly pounds drop…. Buy a case of books and watch your neighborhood shrink to right size."
-Albert Clayton Gaulden, founding director, The Sedona Intensive and author of You're Not Who You Think You Are and Signs and Wonders.
Top customer reviews
First - about me so you know what you are dealing with. This is my first Amazon review ever. I am at least 60 pounds over weight. I have lost (and gained back) weight on at least three different programs and know I will lose weight with Weight Watchers if I really work at it and am very patient - but I knew it would take a long time and lots of deprivation to lose all that I need to lose to improve my health. Before I found this book I was pretty discouraged. I am tired of counting calories and had already worked out for myself that "calories" are a largely inaccurate concept when applied to food. I am pre-diabetic and have joint and skin issues. If that seems like too much sharing, I apologize. Personally, I hate reading reviews without enough information to understand the writer's point of view.
I read the basic details provided above and knew adhering to this program would involve a huge change in my lifestyle. I have a friend (a tiny, little friend who needed to lose about 20 pounds) who had lost weight on the FMD and she loved it. She loved the app and just followed it - but I needed more convincing. More motivation. When I first read about the diet I was hoping for something easier, looking for a way to eat more of what I love (cheese, sugar and corn) and wanting a magic wand. Then I read V. Canfield's review and it gave me the excuse I was looking for - I told my friend that the diet was a starvation program it would be unhealthy to eat so few 'calories'. She was surprised and told me that she never got hungry and had a hard time eating all of the food on the program. I went on WW Simply Filling program and told myself it would be ok - I would just have to starve and work out for years - sigh. I lost 3 pounds in two weeks and then I gained it all back - plus one more.
I went to the FMD website and read more and more about it. Desperate to stave off impending diabetes, I decided I would just buy the book and read it. I read it twice. I got excited about the science and appreciated the psychology of constantly changing things up every few days. It took me 3 weeks of organization and food testing and tasting to get ready to try the diet. I cleaned out at least half of my pantry and my fridge and finally convinced my husband to give it a try (he needs to lose 35 pounds).
We eat constantly. Sometimes I don't think I can get all of the food down. I am NEVER hungry - and I really like the food. I hate lettuce and celery and really prefer fried food to grilled; I can't tell you how much I love icing - but I discovered something new - I LOVE real food. Who knew? Blueberries and strawberries taste sweet to me now and I had no idea how much better organic hummus tastes. And calories? Today I am scheduled to eat 1785 "calories". I am down 9 pounds and my husband lost 7. My skin is clearer. Unbelievably we can both see a difference in our bellies - I have lost 15 pounds before and not seen this much change. This is exciting.
I find it very sad that V. Canfield's inaccurate representation of the program (the calorie counts artificially assume that you can only eat from the cook book, chooses some very lean recipes and then ignores that veggies are unlimited) review has turned so many people away from this program.
If you are inclined to be swayed by V. Canfield - please read the FMD website first. Note that this diet has a great many creditable proponents and has obviously worked for so many people. I kept trying to find detractors and really couldn't - other than V. Canfield who not only seems to be a sort of semi-professional "commenter" but, based on the review, didn't even try the program.
Change takes work. This is a program that makes that work more of an eating evolution - not a life time of deprivation.
****UPDATE**** 1/7/2015. I have been on the FMD program for 9 months now (except for the period between Thanksgiving and New Years Day) and have lost 95 pounds! I stuck to the program religiously until September - so 6 months. Then I started eating on the maintenance plan (basically phase 3 with the food from all the phases thrown in) and I continued to lose weight - just more slowly. When I get stuck, I just do a couple of phase 2 days and that usually helps me to lose a couple of pounds. I absolutely love eating this way. I feel fantastic and have left all of my health problems behind. I have energy to spare. I truly understand the concept of using food as medicine now. Beginning Thanksgiving week, I started eating holiday foods - so sugar, corn, wheat etc. The first week or so I was careful to just cheat a bit here and there. At first, I actually lost 8 pounds after T'giving, so I started feeling a bit bullet proof, obviously I had cured my metabolism and could now eat whatever I wanted, I thought. Grin! By Christmas time I was eating enough sugar that I was beginning to retain fluid, feel pain in my joints and have indigestion - all things that disappeared on the program. I gained back 5 of the 8 pounds I lost right after Thanksgiving and it has taken me a week to get rid of the sugar again - it is incredibly addictive! I managed it pretty easily by eating phase 3 again - with extra fruit and fat whenever I felt sugar cravings. I have lost 2 pounds this week and I am beginning to feel better. Over the holiday, while eating the sugar, my face got puffy, especially under my eyes. Loosing this much weight, I was really worried I would have horribly saggy skin (I am 55) - but I was looking pretty good until this past month when my face looked bloated and my eyes puffy from eating holiday foods. Sugar really is evil! I am in this for the long haul - aiming to lose at least 100 pounds - so stay tuned! I almost forgot to mention that my husband quickly and easily lost 30 pounds (of course!) and then decided he could go back to coffee with cream and pizza, etc. He gained back 8 pounds before he decided he really preferred the way he felt on the program - so he is still eating with me most days.
***1/23/2015 FOOT NOTE: I started this program to lose weight and I thought of my improved health as a natural benefit of weighing less, until I saw this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fWXrRftyOMY
Now I fully understand the truth behind the FMD. Once you watch this you will never look at food in America the same way again!
I'm 5'2" and started at 145 pounds and he is 5'9" and started at 165 pounds. After the four weeks, I am down 7 pounds and he is down 8 pounds. I lost an inch off my chest, an inch off my waist, and and inch and a half off my hips. My love handles, unmeasured, are noticeably smaller. He didn't take measurements, but he went from wearing 32 jeans to 30 jeans.
Don'ts: I started weaning myself off of coffee two weeks in advance by going from two cups to one, to half decaf, to decaf, to nothing. Spouse went cold turkey and suffered the withdrawal headaches. We were diligent about the don't list and both think we generally feel better overall. There were some pretty strong cravings for the don't list in those last three days and I had to re-read her chapter on getting through week 4 multiple times as well as go back to Amazon and read the reviews for inspiration to not give in. We attended a special event the first day after the end of our 28 days and broke all of the don'ts in one go. Heart rates were up, and it felt like I had some sugar shakes, but we didn't feel too bad the day after.
Exercise: I hate cardio and only did one day of vigorous cardio the whole month. I walked at a leisurely pace for 1-5 miles the other Phase 1 days. I did calisthenic strength training both days during Phase 2, including push-ups, planks, squats, tricep dips, and pilates classes. 1 yoga session during each Phase 3.
Fails: We had a few slips in which foods were allowed in which phases due to being out and unprepared or forgetting which types of fruits or vegetables weren't allowed in the phase we were in, but they were pretty minimal. Sometimes I had a spoon of almond butter to stave off cravings for worse. We discovered Chipotle was a pretty decent option for days we were out longer than expected and needed to eat. We also went out to eat with friends, but chose restaurants based on their salad options and asked for no cheese, different type of dressing on the side, etc. depending on the phase we were in. Fancy salad menu options were key.
Cost: The first week was twice our weekly grocery budget and we didn't even stick strictly to organic. Weeks 3 and 4 though were less than usual because we'd already stocked up on staples. I was already using PlanToEat, so I didn't use the FMD apps.
We hated the omelet recipe in the book, so we made turkey bacon with celery every Phase 2 breakfast after. We made it tolerable to our taste buds by using lime juice and smoked paprika or chili powder while it was cooking. Make your own jerky if you can, her recipe isn't bad. I made the lentil stew recipe with chicken, black beans, or chickpeas in place of the lentils for variety and it was good. I also googled vegetarian recipes and made adjustments according to the don'ts. The area I live in doesn't have rice flour or sprouted grain tortillas or even sprouted grain bread, so I made barley in advance and used it in place of the tortillas and bread or in recipes that called for rice in Phase 3.
By the end, Phase 1 was our favorite, Phase 2 was tolerable, and we sometimes felt worse after Phase 3 as we may have gone overboard on those added healthy fats. Perhaps if we'd been more regimented in our eating and exercise we'd have lost more weight, but we each still feel a hundred times better in our overall health. If we go back to gaining weight or start feeling blah, we both think we'll try the diet again.
*UPDATE* September 18, 2017
I am still pretty impressed with this diet. Since finishing the full month cycle in April, I've done a week long "maintenance" cycle twice, during which I did not cut out coffee and did not do the exercise. I seem to lose an extra pound or two in those week long maintenance cycles for my base weight fluctuations. I'm down to 130-133lbs, depending on the day, am buying size small blouses instead of medium, and am tugging up my 28 jeans (I was wearing 30s when I started in April) and should probably buy new jeans. I don't think I was eating very poorly before or after April, there has been a lot of stress and good, fatty food in the cross country moves, vacations, state fairs, dinners with friends, etc. We aren't necessarily eating burgers and pizza every day of the week, but generally make better, healthier decisions most of the time while not following the diet. Burgers, pizza, beer, and ice cream are not cut out.
My mom also started the diet, followed it strictly for two months, and lost 22 lbs. She's now loosely following the diet structure to maintain the weight loss, but doesn't do as much of the exercise and will eat non-diet foods when with friends and family.
TIPS: Panera (or St Louis Bread Co) has a lot of tasty, customizable salads you can adjust to fit the diet, as well as sprouted grain rolls. Invest in some flavored white balsamic vinegars to make salads without a fat a LOT more palatable. My husband and I had a *duh* moment when we realized we probably would have lost more weight to begin with if we'd used smaller portion sizes instead of trying to force ourselves to finish the standard portions in the book as we lost weight. Because if you reduce the portions when you're going from needing to lose forty pounds to losing twenty pounds because you've lost weight...
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