3-Day Diet for Heart Surgery

By Beth Lytle

The three-day diet plan dates to 1985 and promises fast weight loss of up to 10 pounds in just three days. The plan was rumored to be designed to prepare heart patients for heart surgery. It also has been attributed to the American Heart Association. It’s hard to imagine now, however, that any serious medical professional would recommend losing so much weight so fast.

Facts Surrounding the Diet

The diet consists of eating only 1,000 calories per day, and the dieter must eat tuna fish throughout the duration of the diet. The diet includes ice cream, hot dogs and cheese. It is not intended for long-term weight loss but rather only for short-term use. Many health-care professionals today consider this diet to be a fad. It’s not really considered to be a healthy eating diet plan, as other diet plans sometimes are described. According to Kathleen M. Zelman, MPH, RD, LD, in addition to fat loss, the diet promises to cleanse the dieter’s system and lower cholesterol.

How You Should Eat

One of the main points of the three-day diet plan is to eat very specific foods. Portions are very specific, too. Dieters are warned to avoid overeating. Without following the diet exactly, dieters are told, a 10-pound weight loss cannot be achieved. Undereating also is to be avoided. No specific exercises are recommended with the three-day diet plan.

How Does the Diet Work?

The trick to the diet is the select combination of foods, as well as precise proportions. Dieters are supposed to drink four cups of non-caloric drinks or water each day, too. The plan supposedly creates a unique metabolic reaction that boosts fat-burning. The diet can be repeated if alternated with four to five days of undefined “normal” eating. The purpose of switching back and forth between the diet and normal eating is to keep the dieter’s metabolism from slowing down. It also keeps the dieter’s body from entering what is referred to as “starvation mode.”

According to Cindy Moore, Cleveland Clinic's director of nutrition therapy, partaking in a diet offering only 1,000 calories or fewer a day is not a good idea. Once the dieter returns to normal eating, Moore noted, he will likely gain back even more weight than he had lost, possibly at a quicker rate.

Related Articles

More Related