The fat flush diet is a combination weight-loss and detoxification (‘detox’) or cleansing diet, formulated by the well-known nutritionist Ann Louise Gittleman. It is a low-carbohydrate, restricted-calorie diet, which is designed to boost metabolism, decrease water retention, and promote loss of fat. It is considered to be a healthy weight-loss program. It is a balanced diet with a significant exercise component and is designed to be followed for life.
The theory behind the fat flush diet is that eating the correct combinations of foods and eating more often will increase the body’ metabolism and lead to the efficient burning of fat. Therefore, rather than totally restricting fat, the fat flush diet calls for eating the correct fats, as well as the correct carbohydrates and proteins. However, in order to maximize the body’ burning of stored body fat 24 hours per day, the liver and lymphatic system must first be detoxified.
According to Gittleman there are five ‘hidden factors’ that sabotage weight loss, lower energy levels, and interfere with good health:
- A liver that is overloaded with toxins and functioning poorly cannot burn fat properly.
- Food sensitivities and intolerances lead to water retention and ‘waterlogged tissues.’ The fat flush diet eliminates foods that cause water retention and prescribes protein-rich foods, filtered water, and diuretics to remove excess water.
- People are afraid of eating fat. The fats in Gittleman’ diet accelerate fat burning, satisfy hunger, and maintain lean muscle mass.
- Insulin is a fat-storing hormone and excess insulin is caused by food that are high in rapidly released carbohydrates.
- The stress hormone cortisol causes the body to store fat, particularly around the abdomen. Cortisol levels can be controlled by timing meals.
PHASE 1. The two-week phase 1 of the fat flush diet is designed to detoxify the liver so that it can efficiently burn fat. It calls for eight glasses per day of cran-water to reduce water retention or ‘bloating’, lose fat, cleanse the lymphatic system, and reduce cellulite. Caloric intake is restricted to 1100-1200 calories per day. So-called ‘metabolism blockers,’ such as wheat and dairy, are prohibited.
PHASE 2. This ongoing phase of the fat flush diet is designed for continued weight loss with a more moderate cleansing program and a slightly increased variety of foods. The caloric allowance is raised to 1200-1500 calories. Phase 2 is continued until the desired weight loss or size is achieved.
Carbohydrates that may be added back into the diet, at the rate of one per week, include:
- sweet potato
- brown rice
- fresh or frozen peas
- butternut squash
PHASE 3. Phase 3 is a lifelong weight-maintenance plan with a daily caloric allowance of 1500 calories or more. The diet is made up of 40% carbohydrates, 30% protein, and 30% fat, and may include two dairy products and four carbohydrates per day. Some starchy vegetables, fruits, gluten-free grains, dairy products, and more oils are introduced into the diet one at a time, to check for any adverse reactions.
Benefits of the fat flush diet may include:
- detoxification or cleansing of the liver and lymphatic system
- rapid weight loss of up to 10 lb (4.5 kg) in the first two weeks
- elimination of bloating
- weight loss accompanied by body toning
- maintenance of weight loss
- decreased hips, waist, and thigh measurements
According to Gittleman, this plan will also:
- increase metabolism
- permanently eliminate cellulite
- increase energy
- improve sleep
- improve health and appearance
- manage hormones and stabilize mood swings
- improve attitude
- create a healthy lifestyle