Imagine losing 10 pounds in 3 short days while eating ice cream. It sounds like the diet of your dreams!
The Military Diet is an easy to follow diet plan that promises to help you shed your love handles in just 3 days (and yes, there is ice cream on the menu!).
As with any promising diet, you might wonder if the Military Diet too good to be true? After trying all sorts of remedies and diets, most people hoping to lose weight are a bit skeptical of a diet that promises so much.
In short, if you need to lose weight and do it quickly, the Military Diet might be the perfect solution. But while it may help you drop a few pounds to rock those skinny jeans, if you are looking for a long-term health fix, search elsewhere.
But, if a few pounds of weight loss is good enough for you, then you should definitely give this diet a chance. With it, you can kickstart longer weight loss or get ready for a beach weekend quickly.
Our ultimate guide tells you everything you need to know about this army diet. Read on to find out what the 3 Day Military Diet is, who it’s good for, how it works, and what you can and can’t eat on the diet. We’ve even included helpful grocery lists and substitution guides so that you can approach this diet ready for success.
IN SUMMARY, Here Is What You’ll Discover in This Article (Click any of the links below to jump to each section):
- What is the Military Diet? How Does it Work?
- The 3 Day Military Diet Meal Plan
- Diet and Substitution Information
- The 3 Day Military Diet Results
- What does an actual user of the 3 Day Military Diet say?
- The Verdict
The military diet is a calorie-restrictive diet. For 3 days you consume only 1,100-1,400 calories a day at set meal times, with no snacking in between. This is followed by 4 days of healthy eating without the low calorie restrictions. As a one-week diet, it can help you lose as much as 10 pounds. The cycle can also be repeated for more substantial weight loss.
It is based on the principles of consuming the right combination of metabolism-boosting foods. While the diet itself is pretty straight forward, it’s not for the faint of heart. This diet may be exceedingly difficult to stick with because it must be followed exactly.
During the three day military diet, you have to follow a set meal plan. Day 1 of the diet is easier because you are consuming more food than the very limited quantities on Day 3.
The main part of the diet lasts for 3 days. However, it’s recommended you watch what you eat for a full 7 days. On days 4 through 7, you can eat whatever you want but should stay under 1500 calories per day.
In addition to following the meal plan, many people also exercise while on the Military Diet.Does the Military Diet Work?
Whether or not the 3 Day Military Diet works for you really depends on your overall goals. If your goal is to lose a few pounds and lose them quickly, then it will probably work for you.
However, if your goal is more long-term, like substantial weight loss or improving your overall health, this diet will not work for you.
This is because it’s too restrictive to sustain for a long period of time to help you do more than jumpstart a large weight loss. Furthermore, it doesn’t provide enough vitamins and nutrients to help you improve your health or reach your fitness goals.
The good news is that when you combine the specific food combinations and recommended portions with the willpower to stick to the diet, then weight loss is almost guaranteed.
The foods included in the diet are chosen for a reason. Each food has a relatively low calorie count, as well as having protein, carbs, and fats that interact and promote fat-burning action. These food combinations jumpstart your body’s fat-scorching power and speed up your metabolism so the pounds melt away.
Drinking extra water while on the diet will help to ensure that this happens. The water helps you feel full without adding any calories, while it also helps to flush the nasty toxins out of your system. Those toxins are the same toxins that keep those stubborn extra pounds hanging around.
Who is the 3 Day Military Diet best for?
The 3 Day Military Diet is definitely not suited for everyone. If you’re really trying to get healthy, you should think about a different diet solution. However, if you just want to shed some extra weight quickly before a big event, then this may be the diet for you.
This army diet can also be helpful as a jumpstart for changing your eating habits and starting a weight loss journey.
Aside from just looking for a quick way to drop pounds, you should also have very strong willpower.This diet may allow you to eat ice cream, but it doesn’t allow you to stray from the laid out plans at all. It’s also very likely that the diet will make you quite hungry, so you must be prepared to not give in to those hunger pangs.
The 3 Day Military diet also appeals to people who love structure and following pre-made plans. The diet has an exact list of meals for the 3 day duration that must be followed. People that like to improvise more will not do well on this plan.
Day 1 contains approximately 1200 calories
BREAKFAST: Approximately 330 Calories
- 1/2 Grapefruit
- 1 Slice of Toast – preferably whole-grain
- 2 Tablespoons of Peanut Butter
- 1 cup Coffee or Tea (with caffeine)
LUNCH: Approximately 230 Calories
- 1/2 Cup of Tuna or lean protein substitute
- 1 Slice of Toast
- 1 cup Coffee or Tea (with caffeine)
DINNER: Approximately 640 Calories
- 3 ounces of any type of meat or protein substitute
- 1 cup of green beans
- Half a banana
- 1 small apple
- 1 cup of vanilla ice cream (coconut milk ice cream is awesome!)
Day 2 contains approximately 1230 calories
BREAKFAST: Approximately 210 calories
- 1 egg
- 1 slice of toast
- Half a banana
LUNCH: Approximately 340 calories
- 1 cup of cottage cheese
- 1 hard-boiled egg
- 5 saltine crackers
DINNER: Approximately 680 calories
- 2 hot dogs (without bun)
- 1 cup of broccoli
- 1/2 cup of carrots
- Half a banana
- 1/2 cup of vanilla ice cream
Day 3 contains approximately 1030 calories
BREAKFAST: Approximately 250 calories
- 5 saltine crackers
- 1 slice of cheddar cheese
- 1 small apple
LUNCH: Approximately 160 calories
- 1 hard-boiled egg (or cooked however you like)
- 1 slice of toast
DINNER: Approximately 620 calories
- 1 cup of tuna
- Half of a banana
- 1 cup of vanilla ice cream
You’re supposed to exercise and eat normally after you complete the 3 day diet. For best results, it’s recommended that you limit your daily calories to 1500 during the first 4 days following the diet.
Military Diet Calories
As you can see, on the most calorie-intensive day, you’re getting about 1230 calories. That’s really not too much! But, that’s what makes this diet so successful.
After completing the first 3 days, you should follow a diet of 1500 calories or less for the next 4 days. Then, slowly, you can work yourself back up to consuming a more normal number of calories.
Keep in mind that the average woman requires between 1600 and 2400 calories a day and the average man requires between 2000 to 3000 calories a day. This daily amount depends on your age, how much you weigh, and how much you exercise.
If you’re curious how many calories you need to maintain your weight, check out this nifty calculator that will give you a rough estimate.
The Military Diet Menu Nutrition Information
Are you curious to know how nutritious this diet is? The 3 Day Military Diet does provide a variety of foods that contain a range of nutrients. You’ll notice that each day contains a significant amount of protein which is especially helpful while you’re on this low-calorie diet so that you don’t lose muscle or have a metabolism slow-down.
In addition, the diet contains a number of vitamin and mineral-packed foods, some of which may surprise you.
Here are the basics of the nutritional value you’ll gain from each meal on the diet and a military diet menu.
At the start of the day, your body needs energy to get started. Luckily for you, on this diet, breakfast is the second heaviest meal of the day after dinner (except on day 2 where lunch is heavier than breakfast). This meal focuses on proteins and also includes one piece of fruit each day.
In addition, you get to have a cup of black coffee or tea with your breakfast. This is recommended because of the caffeine contained in these drinks that can actually boost your energy expenditure, which can help you lose weight.
Breakfast on day 1 includes grapefruit, toast, peanut butter, and coffee or tea. There are a range of important vitamins and minerals present in this meal.
From the half of a grapefruit, you’ll get 28% of the Vitamin A and over half of your Vitamin C requirements for the day. Vitamin A is vital because it helps the body in a number of areas including vision, promoting healthy skin and mucous membranes, as well as benefiting the immune system and bone and tooth growth.
The Vitamin C in grapefruit is equally important. Although it may stop short of curing the common cold, this vitamin does support your immune system and helps your body to absorb iron.
Grapefruit packs in the nutritional value and also contains Vitamin B-6, potassium and plenty of fiber. Vitamin B-6 is important for protein metabolism and is also indispensable in forming new red blood cells (1), while potassium helps to maintain fluid balance in the body, supports nerve transmission and acts in muscle contractions as well (2).
Finally, fiber is what keeps your digestive system moving and is essential in any diet; especially one focused on weight loss.
From the whole wheat toast, you’ll get plenty of carbohydrates, fiber, iron, Vitamin B-6, magnesium, and calcium. You’re probably familiar with most of these vitamins and minerals. Calcium of course is important for healthy bones and teeth.
Magnesium is also found in the bones, but is also needed for creating protein. Iron plays an important role in blood, specifically since it carries oxygen in the body (2). That’s why iron deficiencies can cause you to feel tired, as oxygen may move more slowly throughout your body.
The peanut butter will fill you up with about 7 grams of protein per two tablespoons as well as healthy fats. Finally, both coffee and tea are full of antioxidants and caffeine to give you a kick start in energy.
As a result, you can confidently choose either coffee or tea. If you want to obtain additional health benefits, try drinking green tea.
On day 2, breakfast gives you protein in the form of an egg (people also do just egg diet, see how it works here). You also get to eat toast and half of a banana. The egg and banana are both rich in vitamins and minerals. Bananas in particular are known for their high potassium content.
Breakfast on day 3 offers protein through cheddar cheese, which is also a source of calcium and fats. The apple, on the other hand, contains Vitamin C and a healthy amount of fiber. The saltines don’t add a whole lot of nutritional value; but do serve as a source of carbohydrates and sodium.
If you’ve taken a look at the meal plan and think the lunches look skimpy, it’s because they are. Lunch is the lightest meal of the day on this diet plan, and only day 2’s lunch is calorically heavier than breakfast. Lunch on the Military Diet tends to focus on proteins and carbohydrates only.
Lunch on day 1 is packed with protein, fulfilling about 60% of your daily protein intake requirements just in the tuna fish. The tuna fish also contributes other vitamins including Vitamin A, B-12, B-6 and minerals including magnesium and iron.
Vitamin B-12 is an important vitamin often found in fish that plays an important role in the creation of new cells. It’s also important for nerve function (3). The bread offers carbohydrates and plenty of fiber.
On day 2, lunch includes lots of fat and protein via the cottage cheese and hard-boiled egg. The cottage cheese is also heavy on sodium and contains Vitamin B-12. The crackers offer little nutritional value.
Finally, lunch on day 3 is very light, consisting of only toast and an egg. You still get a small amount of protein from the egg as well as vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin A, D, B-6 and B-12, and iron.
You’ve now received an overview of the functions of all of these vitamins except for Vitamin D, which helps the body absorb calcium (4).
By the time you reach dinner on the 3 Day Military Diet, you’ll be relieved to see the feast you’re allowed to enjoy. The dinners are the heaviest meal of the day, and offer the most calories as well as more fruits and vegetables than the other meals.
Ice cream is also featured in all three dinners, which is a much-needed treat while you’re dieting hard. This food often gets a bad rap for its poor nutritional content. Although it’s true that most ice cream contains an overdose of sugar, it also has plenty of calcium and vitamin B-12.
The fat content of ice cream is also important since the rest of the diet is very low on fat. Fats, contrary to what many people believe, actually play an important role in our bodies. They are a source of energy and also help your body to absorb essential vitamins and minerals.
However, there are different kinds of fats. Some are healthy, while others aren’t. The fat in ice cream is saturated, and is considered an in-between fat, meaning it’s not particularly good or bad.
When consumed in moderation, it won’t do you much harm. However, it’s preferable to consume polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats, typically found in vegetables, nuts, fish and seeds.
Dinner on day 1 includes chicken or your choice of another meat. The meat is a source of protein. The green beans, apple and banana offer fiber to help keep your digestive system flowing. In addition, these fruits and vegetables contain Vitamin C, magnesium, Vitamin B-6, calcium and potassium. Finally, you can also enjoy some ice cream.
Dinner on day 1 includes chicken or your choice of another meat. The meat is a source of protein. The green beans, apple, and banana offer fiber to help keep your digestive system flowing. In addition, these fruits and vegetables contain Vitamin C, magnesium, Vitamin B-6, calcium and potassium. Finally, you can also enjoy some ice cream.
Day 3’s dinner is a bit simpler featuring only protein-intensive tuna, half of a potassium-packed banana, and of course,ice cream.
The bottom line on the nutritional value of this diet?
While the diet as a whole may not be as varied as your regular diet, it does include enough rich and nutritious foods that it should meet your body’s basic needs. The diet only lasts three days, which means you’ll soon be able to eat a greater variety of foods that will fill in the gaps you’ve missed while dieting. If you were to keep following the diet, repeating the 3-day cycle over and over, you’d run into serious nutritional deficiencies.
The nutritional highlight of the diet is protein. Where calories, vitamins and minerals may be missing, protein is a priority in this diet plan. Protein is included heavily in all three meals every day.
As a whole, you should beware of following the diet for longer than the recommended three days since nutritional and caloric deficiencies will begin to affect you. If you plan on repeating the diet, just be sure to consume good nutrition through a varied diet of about 1500 calories while on your days off.
The idea behind this 3-day Military Diet is that the recommended foods work together to boost your metabolism. Therefore, if you are not following the diet exactly, you may not benefit from the same results.
However, it’s understandable that some people have dietary restrictions such as gluten allergies. Vegetarians and vegans will also need to make substitutions while on this diet. Take a look at these recommendations and military diet substitutes to help you along as needed.
Food sensitivities, allergies, and ethical choices may force you to modify a bit.
Military Diet Vegetarian Options
Military diet vegetarian modifications are possible. Just because you’re a vegetarian, that doesn’t mean that you can’t do the military diet.
You’ll have to make some modifications where the diet includes meat products. Instead of the tuna, meat and hot dogs, you can use tofu, Portobello mushrooms, lentils, beans, cottage cheese, peanuts or almonds.
Ideally, you’ll choose a substitute that has plenty of protein since meat is protein-heavy. You’ll see that the above substitutions list will be your best friend while you’re planning.
Vegetarian modifications to the military diet can mean that you’ll consume fewer calories, or even more, depending on what you choose. Use a trusty calorie calculator to make sure you’re on target.
For example, for dinner on day 1, you’re allowed 3 oz of meat or a protein substitute. If you were to eat chicken, that would be about 200 calories.
If you substitute that with 3 oz of tofu, you’re consuming only about 65 calories. However, if you choose black beans, you’ll get 111 calories, or 489 calories if you eat 3 oz of almonds.
It’s a bit of a difference, but also note that you could eat double the beans or tofu and get the same number of calories as you would with the chicken. Or, you could have the recommended amount of beans and still slip in a handful of almonds.
Obviously, 3 oz of almonds would be too many almonds even if they weren’t so calorie heavy. Therefore, do your calorie research well on military diet vegetarian modifications to ensure you’ll still get the same great results.
Military Diet 4 Days Off: Your After-Diet Guide
Once you’ve completed the 3 Day Military Diet plan, it’s best if you limit yourself to 1500 calories a day for the next 4 days.
Other dieters follow the military diet 4 days off rule, which means that after 4 days of following a 1500 calorie diet, they do the 3-Day Military Diet again. So, what does a 1500 calorie diet look like? Here are some ideas for how you can plan your meals for your 4 days off:
Total of 1237 calories for the day
Breakfast: 206 Calories
- 1 scrambled egg
- 1 slice of whole wheat bread
- ½ cup sliced strawberries
- Coffee with 1 tablespoon sugar
Snack: 95 Calories
- 1 medium-sized apple
Lunch: 505 Calories
- 1 roasted chicken breast, no skin
- Salad consisting of: 1 cup fresh spinach, 1 cup romaine lettuce, and 1 tablespoon each of olive oil and vinegar
- 1 cup pasta
- ½ cup tomato sauce
Snack: 70 calories
- 2 clementine fruits
Dinner: 431 Calories
- ½ cup black beans
- ½ cup brown rice
- 4 tablespoons salsa
- 2 (6-inch diameter) corn tortillas
- 1 oz part skim mozzarella cheese
Total of 1407 calories for the day
Breakfast: 467 Calories
- 8 oz plain, low-fat yogurt
- ½ cup fresh blueberries
- 1 cup of oatmeal cooked with water, salt and 2 tablespoons of honey
- Black coffee (no sugar)
Lunch: 403 calories
- Sandwich consisting of: 2 slices of whole wheat bread, 2 oz. deli sliced turkey breast, and 1 slice (1 ounce) cheddar cheese
- 3 slices each of cucumber, celery and carrot with 1 tablespoon of ranch dressing
Snack: 60 Calories
- 1 fresh whole peach
Dinner: 477 Calories
- 3 oz grilled or baked salmon
- 1 cup of steamed broccoli spears
- 1 medium-sized baked potato with 1 tablespoon of butter
Get the idea? You need to include lots of fruit and vegetables in your diet. This really helps you feel full without packing in the calories. As you can see in these two options, you can still add a few extra snacks or calories if you still feel hungry at meal or snack time and still meet your daily calorie allowance of 1500 or less.
You can always check your food’s calorie level by using one of the various calorie calculators available online such as the one offered by WebMD.
Also, notice that the only included drink is coffee. Avoid sugary drinks, alcohol, and soda as these will add a lot of calories. Instead, drink plenty of water or herbal tea. If you find plain water too boring to drink, then you can add a bit of lemon or try one of the many cucumber water recipes available in this post.
Make sure you plan out your 4 days off during the Military diet carefully. It’s best if you know exactly what you’ll be eating so you can have the right food available at home. This will help you to avoid the temptation of eating junk food or overeating.
You don’t want to gain back the weight you just worked so hard to lose on the 3-Day Military Diet, so push through the following 4 days with the same intensity, resolve, and discipline. Then, if you want to lose even more weight, repeat the cycle starting with the 3-Day Military Diet all over again.
If you choose to finish dieting after these last 4 days, you should also strive to maintain a healthy diet full of healthy fats, proteins, lots of fresh fruit and vegetables and whole grains. Other ideas for leading a healthy diet are also discussed in the sections below.
Exercising on the Military Diet
Exercise is an essential element of any weight loss program. Through exercise, you give your weight loss a boost by burning additional calories. However, since you’re on the restrictive 3-day diet, you should only do light exercise. Be sure that you listen to your body.
And if you ever feel light-headed while exercising, be sure to stop and rest. Each person’s body reacts differently to the diet, and for some, the calorie restriction can result in feeling a bit faint or dizzy.
As you’re planning your exercise routine, try to keep it varied. This is because a mix of cardio and strength training is best, both for burning calories and building muscle.
Unfortunately, many people only focus on cardio, which is a start, but including strength training will make you appear even slimmer as the pounds drop off. In addition, muscle burns more calories than fat when you’re at rest, which means that in the long-term you’ll burn even more calories.
Here are Some Edeas For Exercising During the 3-Day Restricted Portion of the Diet:
Do 20-30 minutes of cardio-related exercise
You can jog, walk, swim, or even do dance-inspired workouts like Zumba to receive your cardio workout. If you tend to get bored just jogging or walking, why not try a video workout?
There are plenty of options out there. HIIT, or high intensity interval training workouts, are particularly well-known for working well at burning fat and getting you fit. Ready to get started right now? Here’s a free video workout that you can try:
Do 20-30 minutes of weight training
You don’t need equipment to get started. Instead, use bodyweight, or resistance, exercises while you’re getting used to the idea. If you already have a gym membership or equipment at home, however, you can certainly make use of the weights. Need advice for working on strength training? You can learn more about strength training here.
You can do both types of exercise for each of the three days, or just one of them. Then, when you’re on your 4 days off the diet, you can do both cardio and weight training, or perhaps lengthen the time you do either one of them by up to 45-60 minutes.
You can also alternate days by doing cardio one day and strength training the next. This way you get the benefits of each, but only focus on one at a time.
Get a friend to go along with you for extra accountability. The goal here is to exercise long-term. If you do, you’ll really be able to reach and maintain your health and weight goals.
Too Dizzy to Exercise?
Exercising on diet days can be challenging because you’re consuming only a very small amount of calories. If you feel too dizzy to exercise, you can focus on exercising only during the 4 days off.
Another solution is to modify the diet and extend the time you practice it like the participants in an 8-week study on weight loss. In this study, individuals participated in alternating days of fasting and exercise.
On the fasting days, participants severely limited calorie intake, and on the other days they ate a more normal diet and exercised. The combination of calorie restriction and exercise proved effective in helping participants lose weight and improve other health factors such as insulin resistance and triglyceride levels.
Alternatively, focus on lighter, less intensive exercise while you’re dieting. For example, try going for a walk on your lunch break or doing 15 minutes of relaxing yoga.
The 3 Day Military Diet will deliver some impressive weight loss results if you stick with it as outlined during the 3-day diet period. Many users report military diet results between 3 and 10 pounds lost per cycle.
For the best results, you will also need to make sure you don’t go over the 1500 calorie limit during the other 4 days off. During those off-days, keep away from alcohol, sugary drinks, and other foods that would otherwise limit weight loss.
If losing up to 10 pounds isn’t enough, people have followed the diet cycle for a full month. They repeat the cycle of 3 days on followed by 4 days off for a month. The Military Diet results on this plan are obviously much greater if you do multiple cycles.
You could conceivably lose 20-30 pounds if you do repeat the diet several times over. If choosing to go this route, make sure during the 4 days off the diet that you are eating a diet full of nutrients and vitamins that you may not be getting enough of during the 3 days on the strict regime.
Another alternative is to give your body a bit more of a rest between cycles and subsequently perform the 3 Day Military Diet once a month. This will also boost your military diet results, but more slowly and over a longer period of time.
Adding exercise into the mix also ups the ante of your expected results. Exercise can help firm up the muscles underneath the fat you are shedding. It also keeps your metabolism running on high, and can burn extra calories.
Tasmin: Blogger and Student (Lost 6 Pounds)
Tasmin recently returned home from university 12 pounds heavier! Her experience is typical of the returning college student who’s gained their “freshman fifteen.” She decided to give the 3 Day Military Diet a try to see if it would help her lose some of the extra weight.
Follow her journey through this video. In the vlog, you’ll see how she’s feeling, how she did with the meals and of course her results! Tasmin was upbeat throughout the diet, saying she powered through it even though it was a bit tough at times. As you’ll see, she exercised while on the diet and also spread out some of the foods, using some parts of meals as snacks. She did well on the diet and lost a total of 6 pounds!
This entertaining video follows the experience of 3 couples who attempt the Military Diet, competing to see which couple would lose the most weight. The couples had varied experiences, but typically the men lost more weight than the women.
In terms of enthusiasm, most couples were happy with the results, but didn’t enjoy themselves while actually on the diet. One of the couples even talked about getting grouchy and snappy while on the diet. Watch the whole video to find out who the winners were, and how much weight they lost.
Charmaine – Vlogger (Lost 5 Pounds)
In this Military Diet vlog, learn in detail about the experience of Charmaine. Although she struggles with hunger throughout the diet, she’s happy with her results. Charmaine reports that she’s hoping to lose weight for an upcoming trip so that she can feel more confident in her vacation outfits.
In addition to following the diet, Charmaine hits the gym and completes workouts even though she does feel tired. She feels that exercising has contributed to her success.
Throughout the vlog footage, she shares images of her meals and talks about how she’s feeling. In the end, she lost 5 pounds! Charmaine reminds us all to continue to follow a healthy diet afterwards so that you don’t gain the weight back.
Motivated? These are great success stories to let you know that it is possible to lose weight while on the 3 Day Military Diet. Now, take a look at some other outcomes from users across the internet.
These are just some of the testimonials we have gathered.
Want to hear more inspiring stories of people losing weight? See our post of the shocking weight loss stories here.
Can You Really Lose 10 Pounds in a Week?
Most people report losing weight in the 4-7 pound range. However, if they continue to lose weight on the 4 days off, they could feasibly reach the 10 pounds in a week goal.
The short answer to the question “Can you really lose 10 pounds in a week?” is yes. But, as you probably guessed, there’s more.
Why does the diet seem to be more effective for some people than others?
It depends on a number of factors. First, it depends on how much you weigh when you start the diet and what your current eating habits are.
If you drink a lot of sugary drinks like soda and consume a high-calorie diet, this diet is a big change, which means you can probably also expect big results.
You’ll also notice that men seem to lose more weight than women. This is actually based on body composition. Sorry ladies, but men just naturally have a leg up on losing weight! Why?
Because most men have more muscle tissue, so they are simply able to burn more calories than women. Muscle tissue burns more calories than fat, even when the body is at rest.
If you’re a woman, you can gain the benefits of additional muscle that will help you burn more calories by focusing on strength training. That will help the body weight you do have burn more calories, essentially boosting your metabolism.
What does it take to lose 10 pounds?
Based on calories, you need to cut out or burn 3500 calories to lose 1 pound . Multiply that by 10 pounds, and you’re talking about cutting out 35,000 calories in a week. That’s quite a bit! If we consider your eating habits, most people consume about 2000 to 2500 calories every day.
On the Military Diet, you’re cutting back to about 1200 calories a day on the 3 Day diet, and probably around 1500-1700 calories on the 4 days off. That means just in calorie consumption, you’re cutting out about 1000 per day during the restricted portion of the diet.
Your body consumes calories, even while you’re resting. A sedentary person, which is someone who doesn’t exercise, burns an average of about 1600 calories in a day.
These calories, however, are usually replaced with what you do eat. Through the first 3 days of the diet you’ll eat less than what you consume, which means there’s an additional deficit of about 400 calories per day.
Without exercise, you can expect to cut out 1400 calories per day during the first 3 days of the Military Diet. Add in some walking and dedicate a bit of time to exercise, and you’ll eliminate another 600 calories or more!
Based on these numbers, you’d cut out about 2000 calories per day, resulting in a weight loss of fewer than 3 pounds during the first 3 days of the Military Diet.
So, how can you lose more than 3 pounds then? Well, our bodies are more complex than simple calorie-counting would have you believe. Each person’s metabolism is different and reacts differently to the diet.
Many people burn more than 2000 calories in a day, just through their regular activities, which would mean you’d lose more weight. It’s also possible that you typically consume more than 2000 calories in a day, which can make the effects of the diet even more dramatic.
If you’re looking for a quick fix to lose 10 pounds in a week, this is a great diet to try. However, it’s not a long-term solution, and you’ll eventually have to go back to eating a more fulfilling diet that meets your caloric and nutritional requirements.
Military Diet Shopping List
- 1 grapefruit
- 2 small apples
- 2 bananas
- 1 cup broccoli
- 1 cup green beans
- Whole grain bread
- 2 1/2 cups Vanilla ice cream
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup cottage cheese
- Cheddar cheese (small block, you’ll only need 1 slice)
- 2 Hot dogs
- 1 ½ cups Tuna (about three 5 oz cans)
- 3 oz lean meat
- 1 small jar natural Peanut Butter
- Coffee or Caffeinated Tea (enough for 2 cups)
The 3 day Military Diet is essentially a restrictive fad diet that is dangerously low in calories.
The inclusion of unhealthy, sugary, and processed foods, such as ice cream and hot dogs, and the deficiency of necessary vitamins and minerals makes the diet unhealthy. These foods may lead to diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, and cancer.
Also, the promise of the diet that specific food combinations would boost your metabolism is not backed up by science. Also, the low-calorie intake recommended in the 3-day Military Diet is potentially dangerous and not sustainable. It can lead to yo-yo dieting and potentially dangerous eating disorders.
Lastly, the restrictive nature of the diet certainly removes the joy from cooking and eating.
For long-term success, it is recommended to avoid short fad diets and focus on a gradual lifestyle change. Start eliminating processed foods, and begin eating a mostly organic, plant-based whole food diet with plenty of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, seeds, nuts, beans, and legumes.
Also, be sure to exercise at least 20 – 30 minutes a day for most days of the week, get enough sleep, reduce stress, and practice a positive mindset.
If you follow these basic healthy eating and living principles, over time you will notice that the pounds will drop, your health will improve, and you will feel happier, more energetic, and overall fantastic!
We’d love to hear from you! What did you find helpful about this article? Do you have firsthand experience with the Military Diet to share with other readers? Share your thoughts and reactions to the article in the comments area below.
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