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on November 23, 2001
Ok, I had rated this book a 1 star until my friend let me read the new lifespan book. I am strictly against diets like atkins. I have also been reading peoples bad reviews and 9 out of 10 times they must be eating like pigs at the reward meal. For anyone who wants to try the diet here is the basics. For breakfast you can eat bacon, ham, or steak and eggs just like atkins. And for lunch you can eat 4 oz of meat with 4 grams worth of vegetables only!! So lunch can be a grilled chicken breast with a salad. For the reward meal you MUST balance the meal and make sure it contains ALL the 4 food groups. You MUST eat 2 cups of salad with every reward meal. You should drink a glass of milk at reward meals for calcium. You should take a plate and serve 1/3 protein, 1/3 carbs, and 1/3 veggies. You NEVER want to gorge on sweets. Yes you can HAVE dessert, BUT you cant eat a whole pie, or cake. You MUST finish the reward meal in ONE hour! If you really want use this diet get the new lifespan diet. It contains all the newer information. Here is a normal days meals.
2 eggs
4 oz ham
coffee, or tea
4 oz meat
1 small salad
Reward Meal
2 cups salad
1 cup milk
8 oz steak
1 cup potatoes
1 cup green beans
1 slice of cake
1 dinner roll
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on February 22, 2012
After my boss lost 100lbs on this diet in 6 months and kept it off for over 5 years, I decided to try it. I want to lose 40lbs and so far it's been around 3 weeks and I have lost 12lbs. My boyfriend has lost 17lbs in the same amount of time (he wants to lose 40lbs too).

We have found this diet to be the easiest one we have ever tried (have tried low carb and calorie counting previously). The best part of this diet is that it is teaching both of us to treat food as fuel rather than only a pleasure or a comfort or entertainment. That said, the 'reward' meal each day really keeps us going and at times is the only reason we've stayed on this diet. We just make sure that when we have a craving for junk food, we keep looking forward to having the food at our reward meal. It helps us to have a shorter goal (having it at the end of the day) and we have something new to look forward to each and every day.

For my reward, I usually have a decent sized oatmeal chocolate chip cookie from the farmers market and 2 small scoops of ice cream (along with my protein, good carb and salad). My boyfriend usually has ice cream, a cookie and a square or two of specialty chocolate. Or he'll have 2 cookies or 2 beer sometimes. We have never enjoyed ice cream so much and the cookie tastes like heaven at the end of the day!

That said, we do restrict the portion of 'junk' to equal the same size as the protein we have with the meal. That part was definitely an adjustment in the beginning since I could (and still can) easily eat 6 cookies or more in a sitting (in fact I cheated about a week ago and ate a dozen cookies! but instead of getting depressed I just started the diet again the next day. That is also something new for me. In past, if I 'failed' to keep to past diets for even one meal I would just give up).

Still, having smaller portions of junk food is teaching us balance and we are learning that we won't actually die (even if it feels like it) if we don't give into a craving or if we have a smaller portion of the desired food. With the experience of success on this diet (whether success be a pound or a smaller portion of ice cream) comes knowledge that we can make changes and succeed.

One thing we do on this diet is weigh ourselves every day. If we gain/stay the same too long we take an honest look at our reward food and make sure the reward really is the same portion size as the protein we've eaten. It's easy to delude ourselves sometimes and have 'just a little more' ice cream than protein.

Also, for us it helps to buy really good 'junk food' like specialty chocolate or haagen-dazs ice cream - it's more expensive but you will be eating less of it so it works out in that way. To us, it is so worth it to make our rewards amazingly delicious and savor every bit!! The second and third day of this diet I was literally smelling my cookie before eating it so that I could savor every little sniff! haha. That level of craving has since passed although I do still savor my reward meal each day. The past sugar/junk food cravings have tapered off a lot since the first week of this diet and they are very manageable now -- which feels like a miracle since in past all of my eating habits were dominated by sugar/carb/junk cravings. We both feel this is a diet we can definitely keep doing until we reach our goal weights (After all, on what other diet can I have ice cream every day or a beer each night and still lose weight?)

After reaching my goal, I feel that I will add a moderate amount of balanced carbs into my diet (for example: a slice of toast with protein for breakfast or cereal as well as protein -- in addition to a reward meal) but will keep with the balanced approach to eating and the reward meal. My boyfriend feels like he could do this diet forever and calls it a lifestyle choice rather than a diet.

This is really an awesome diet worth trying. Any change is different than what you are used to, and will probably be a challenge/adjustment at first but this diet does become easier to stick to and there is daily motivation (aka-daily rewards) to keep you going.

Best of luck to anyone trying this! It does get easier! You can do it!

PS - I just reread this review before posting and laughed (and cringed a bit) because I sound like an advertisement or something. Sorry the review is so long too. I am just so glad to have found this diet/lifestyle change and feel so in control of my eating habits, it feels wonderful. I hope others can find the same success I have and know I will continue to have.
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on June 20, 2004
Carbs aren't the enemy, it's just the TYPE of carbs you eat that can shoot your glycemic index way up, causing a huge insulin rush. Once your body becomes used to those high amounts of insulin, the "excess" gets stored just like excess calories do- in the form of fat. Dr.'s Heller help us to understand that there are good carb choices and bad carb choices. For example, most fruits and vegetables are good carbs, while bread, rice, corn, bananas, table and other forms of sugar, sweets, etc are all bad forms of carbs. Carb Addicts is simply about making good choices. The "reward meal" allows you one meal a day where you can eat some bad carbs, provided you eat a small side salad first, and eat equal portions of protein and good carbs along with the bad. You can go back for more "bad" carbs as long as you also take more and equal amounts of protein and good carbs. Eventually, you insulins levels even out, and you lose the cravings for the "bad" carbs. The book gives you the list of foods to eat and foods to avoid, plus a few recipes to help you create low-carb meals. Also included is a test to find out how sensitive you are to carbs.
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on May 4, 2004
I found this book while browsing the diet section of the bookstore last summer (2003). I read the whole book in about two days and immediately started the diet. I was about 35lbs over my ideal weight at the time and on the diet I ended up losing about 15 in a month's time. Then I slipped off the diet and gained it all back and then another 10 on top of that. I've have tried Weight Watchers and counting calories but it just doesn't work as well and leaves me hungry all the freaking time. I have started to the Carb Addicts diet again and I have already seen a lb come off in less than a week. I am concerned that I will have a difficult time losing during this endeavor because I've gone on and off it several times since the first time I did it. I have found it really hard not to snack at night but if I must have something salty, Tsuami miso soup is easy to make and only has 3 carbs in a bowl. This diet really does control cravings for sweets and bread and you will lose weight on it if you just consistently follow the plan.
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I've been on the program for 3 years. It's wonderful. To the people that are just starting, I'd encourage you to be patient. My weight loss was very sporatic. I'd feel as though I was losing but the scales didn't tell me that. I'd wait a couple more days and be down 5-6 pounds. It's the only way for me to eat for my life. I've been rid of 35-40 pounds for 2 full years. Thank you.
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on November 17, 2002
I weighed "a little more than I should" when I came across this book as a result of reading the Carbohydrate Addicted Kids' book. I began this the weekend of Easter, and slowly, over months, lost 25 pounds. I DO NOT eat protein all day. I follow the guidelines in the book and eat low-carb veggies as well as meats. The only problems I ever have are when I decide that I don't need to follow the way of eating anymore, and then I begin to gain again. The "restrictions" are not oppressive, and make sense.
Always remember, though, that NO ONE DIET is right for everyone. There are many kinds of diets out there, and many people succeeding on each one. The goal is to find the one that works for YOU. This one may or may not be the right one for you. Read the book, try the diet, then decide for yourself if this is working for you, and if it is something you can live with long-term.
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on January 21, 2004
Two friends of mine at work would rave about this diet that they were on - they werent obese or anything like that, but you could tell that they both looked slimmer. I was currently weighing 160lbs. I am 4'11 - so that is not a good thing. I read the book and went to the commisary - stocking up on all i needed to take this diet seriously. I am a working wife/mother of 3 - so i needed something that would allow for me to come home and cook a nice dinner on a daily basis so this diet seemed to be the solution for me....
Oh my God!! i can not tell you how well it worked for me. The weight began to drop. I went from a size 14 to a size 8. I went down to 130 lbs. It was awesome!! I loved it. I had the energy, i had no appitite. It was as if my stomach shrank - because i couldnt even eat a whole lot after a while..
BUT... then i stopped eating in that manner and began to incorporate sugars and carbs into my diet during the day and the weight came back over a period of 2 yrs..
I am now at 165 lbs, more than i have ever weighed before - but the diet in and of itself works. I am back on the diet, because i know that it works - and next time when i get back to my wieght, i wont gain it back!!
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on November 12, 2003
I have tried atkins, protein power, and the south beach diets with nothing but failure. Here is a diet that offers you the same, but once a day you can eat carbohydrates for one meal. I find some of the negative reviews quite funny. Do you people think the reward meal means eating a whole pizza, a pound of chocolate, or a quart of ice cream? I found the book very simple to understand. You eat a low carb breakfast, a low carb lunch, and a reward meal for supper daily. For example a sample day for me would be eggs and bacon for breakfast, any meat for lunch, and for my reward meal I start off with (2) cups of salad and I will have steak, a baked potato, green beans, roll, and a piece of cake for dessert, or I will have (3) cups of salad, spaghetti and meatballs, and a piece of pie for dessert, or I will have a double cheeseburger, fries, a large salad, and dessert(dont eat fast food if you can help it, make your burgers at home). You have an hour to eat your reward meal, but I always finish long before the hour is up. You are supposed to eat veggies at lunch with your meat, so I usually have coldcuts wrapped in lettuce and a dill pickle. Dont worry about eating veggies for breakfast! Remember folks the reward meal is a FEAST, not a BINGE. Eat a balanced reward meal, and you will succeed. Binge of junk food, and you will fail.
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on October 25, 2003
I have read all of the reviews and I cannot believe how many people who do not like the diet are actually following the diet correctly. It is NOT protein all day. For breakfast I have an omlette with 2 eggs, chopped green pepper, mushrooms and 1 t. onion. I have some sauteed spinach on the side and tea with Splenda. For lunch, Prawns and crab steamed over chicken broth (delicious) in a salad with asparagus, 1/2 tomato, cucumbers, mushrooms and topped with a mayonnaise, lemon and Splenda dressing that is delicious! Dinner can be lobster, a small baked potato, summer squash and a tossed salad. You can forgo the potato and have some garlic French bread or fresh strawberries with melon or a dish of gelato. I have never been able to eat this way in my life not gain let alone lose 1-2 pounds a week! I love it! But you must read the book and follow it exactly... it can be very healthful if you choose it to be or very unhealthy if that is the way you choose also. I have boundless energy and look sexy in my jeans again
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on October 23, 2003
I suppose that being addicted to carbs is never a good thing, but if you are a moderate to severe carbohydrate addict this just may be your lucky day! Your ticket to weight loss success can be found in the pages of this book! I followed the plan and effortlessly lost weight in a relatively short period of time. What makes this diet so easy is that you are not restricted to following a dramatic low carb/high protein diet (like Atkins), but are instead allowed to eat one reward meal a day (in addition to two low-carb meals) that consists of pretty much any foods you want, as much as you want, as long as you eat them in balanced proportions within one hour. Thus you are never expected to permanently stop eating breads, pastas, desserts, fruits, etc., but are limited to indulging in them once a day only. Believe me, this is well worth it, easy, and it works for many people! The authors (both doctors) also report dramatic health improvements for those who have followed the diet (including themselves). Truthfully though, I would've rated the book 4-1/2 stars if possible just because the food guidelines can be a little unclear at points, resulting in a slower rate of weight loss if misunderstood. Also, some of the "complementary" foods listed in earlier editions of the book have been later found to trigger cravings and to slow weight loss in some people. However updates, guidance, and advice are available on the Hellers' website, so don't let those glitches deter you from trying this plan. This just may be the weight loss solution you've been waiting for!
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