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Getting the right weight loss plan for you can be difficult, mostly because of how different our lifestyles are. Some diets may work for you and not for someone else. There are two main categories of weight loss strategies; exercised focused weight programs and diet focused weight programs, such as the 17 day diet.

Some people may add weight while forcing on exercise-based regimes as the body often builds up muscle to adapt to the additional toll on the body. However, with proper exercise routines, you will start losing weight and toning your muscles.

But what about the busy people who cannot dedicate about two hours of workout sessions daily? Diet focused regimes may be the answer for you. It is important to note that with whatever system you choose, dieting and exercising, play an essential role in losing weight.

Overview of the 17 day diet

The 17 days diet plan is a popular diet-based weight loss program. It was designed and written by Dr Mike Moreno in 2010. He claims to have developed a safe and a fast way to lose weight and most importantly sustain the weight loss.

The diet plan is split into four phases, 17 days each, with each stage designed to help your metabolism increase.

The whole gist of the diet plan is to train your body to metabolize food faster and more effectively by exciting it with different food groups to keep your metabolism active. In all essence, the 17 day diet is meant to train your eating habits and reduce the fat conversion rate by your body by making sure you use all the food you consume effectively.

Dr Mike Moreno also emphasizes the need to chew your food thoroughly and slowly. By chewing your food thoroughly, you give your digestive system an easier time in breaking down the food, resulting in better utilization of food components; hence less food is converted to body fat. On the other hand, by eating slowly, you give your body ample time to digest the small portions of food, again resulting in better food breakdown and less conversion of food into body fat.

Phase one: Acceleration

At this point, you are supposed to increase your protein consumption and not consume any carbs at all.

It is also referred to as the detoxing period, where through your diet you help your body eliminate the harmful chemical build up from your previous diet.
You are allowed to take fruits as an alternative to carbohydrates.

The sugar in fruits, e.g. Fructose is easily broken down by the body; this results in low food to body fat conversion.

It is also essential to exercise at least 17 minutes a day. But, do not over exercise as at this stage your body has low energy levels due to your reduced carbohydrate consumption. Vigorous exercising at this stage can make you feel sick.

The science behind it

Proteins are referred to as bodybuilding foods, and hence little of it is turned into fat. While on the other hand, carbohydrates are called energy giving food. If you do not use the carbohydrates, you consume, the body converts them into body fat. But if you do not eat carbs entirely, your body would be forced to use the body fat already stored, hence weight loss.

Recommended foods

  • Poultry Meat
  • Egg white
  • Fish
  • Fruits with less sugar, such as oranges, grapes and apples (tip the acidic nature of these fruits also helps in digestions)
    Sugar-free foods (Tip: make sure the sugar is not substituted with fat as the sweetening agent)

Phase 2: Active

In the second step of the 17 days diet, you are required to alternate between high calories and low-calorie days. If today you have high-calorie meals, then tomorrow you should have low-calorie dishes. Dr, Moreno also referred to as alternating fasting.

In the low calories’ days, consume what you did in the acceleration phase of the diet plan. While on the high calories’ days take foods high in carbohydrates. The book by Dr Mike Moreno suggests that you should take two servings of foods with high carbs on those days.

The whole purpose of the second phase is to reset your metabolism. However, do not take carbs after 2 pm. The reason behind this is that the body is less active in the late afternoons and evenings on the day, meaning it will not break down the food as effectively.

The science behind it

As we have mentioned above, this is more like an alternating fasting diet regimen; you try and reset your body’s metabolism back to normal.

By having high and low carbs days, you will keep your digestive system active, and this results in better food break down. At this point, you also have more energy and can resume your daily activity without getting sick.

Recommended foods

  • Lean beef
  • Legumes such as beans
  • Starchy foods such as potatoes
  • Lean pork

Phase three: achieve

This is the period where you train your body with healthier eating habits and how to properly manage your weight loss. You are allowed to consume a broader range of carbohydrate than in the active phase, and you do away with the foods in the accelerated phase entirely.
You can even have one alcoholic drink from time to time. However, the 17 day diet recommends that if you want better results, avoid alcohol in this phase altogether.
The most critical element in this stage of the diet plan is to increase your workout routine to about an hour. This increase in exercise will assist you in breaking down of the higher amount of carbs you are taking.
Nonetheless, you are still not permitted to consume carbs after 2 pm.

The science behind it

Your body’s digestive system is already highly active and can better break down the food you consume, meaning there will be less food to body fat conversion. By exercising more, and your body breaking down the menu better, your body loses weight in a fast, sustainable and effective way.

Recommended foods

  • Different types of meat
  • Bread
  • Foods high in fiber
  • Pasta
  • Milk

Phase four: Achieve

In this stage, you have already trained your body with healthy eating and have bettered your metabolism.

Choose any of the plans above and stick to it from Monday to Friday. On the weekends, think of it as the “cheat days” of your diet plan, and you can have any of your favorite foods but in moderation.

However, over the weekends work out vigorously to burn all the “cheat foods” you have consumed. But still, stick to the no carbs after 2 pm rule. At this point, you would have completed the 17 day diet. However, continue with stage four of the regimen for life, not as a dieting routine but as a way of living.

The science behind it

By sticking to a different phase every week your body is kept active, but in less erratic ways than in the other stages. However, you have already trained your body, and it will remain active and continuously break down what you eat more effectively. The fourth phase is the final stage and the completion of your body’s adaptation to the 17 day diet regimen.


The 17 day diet, in theory, has a lot of scientific bases around it. It relies on the knowledge of the human body to help you lose weight. It does this by not forcing your body to achieve this goal, but rather, by training it.

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