Should You Try the Body Reset Diet? Here's What a Dietitian Thinks

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The Body Reset Diet encourages replacing some meals with smoothies.
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Created by Harley Pasternak, a celebrity personal trainer who has worked with everyone from Kim and Khloe Kardashian to Jessica Simpson, Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande, the Body Reset Diet is a 15-day program that promises to "power your metabolism, blast fat, and shed pounds," according to The Body Reset Diet book, published by Pasternak in 2013.

The diet is built to "reset" your body and give you a jumpstart on your weight-loss goals. Pasternak attempts to provide solutions through his diet to solve for the many reasons why other diets fail.

The "rules" of the diet include:

  • Eat five times a day to rev up your metabolism
  • Follow specific nutritional criteria for each meal
  • Build each meal around the same categories of ingredients
  • Prepare each meal in five minutes

The Body Reset Diet lasts for 15 days, which is broken up into three phases, lasting five days each.

Phase One

During phase one (days one through five), smoothies are consumed three times a day along with two snacks. The meals are structured to be high in volume so that you'll still feel like you're eating a lot of food when in fact the calorie count is closer to 1,200 per day.

Workouts like CrossFit or SoulCycle are discouraged during phase one. Instead, you should aim to walk 10,000 steps each day.

Phase Two

During phase two (days six through10), you continue eating five times a day. The one big change is that you reduce the number of smoothies from three to two per day, and you add one solid meal instead. So, your meals include two smoothies, one healthy, whole foods meal and two snacks between meals each day.

Rigorous exercise is still discouraged, but in addition to your daily steps, a 5-minute resistance training program is added, to be completed three times a week.

Phase Three

During this phase (days 11 through 15), you continue with the pattern by reducing the number of smoothies again. Now you'll enjoy just one smoothie a day, along with two meals and two snacks.

Exercise is increased again. The goal is still to take 10,000 steps a day, and the 5-minute training programs are increased to five times a week.

Curious exactly how many calories you burn during your workouts? Download the MyPlate app for a more accurate and customized estimate.

What Can You Eat on the Body Reset Diet?

Foods to Eat

  • Whole grains
  • High-fiber fruit (berries, apples, kiwis, oranges)
  • Vegetables
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Fat-free dairy
  • Egg whites
  • Fish, lean meat and poultry

Foods to Avoid

  • Alcohol
  • Sugary beverages
  • Fried food
  • Candy
  • High-fat meats
  • Highly processed snacks (chips, most crackers, etc.)
  • Refined grains

Sample Phase One Menu

During Phase One, the three smoothies you consume must follow this order: white smoothie for breakfast, red smoothie for lunch, green smoothie for dinner. There are recipes for each color-specific smoothie in the book, as reported by U.S. News and World Report.

White Smoothie

  • 1 orange, peeled
  • 1/3 cup coconut milk
  • 1 scoop whey protein powder
  • 1 banana
  • 1 cup pineapple chunks

Snack

  • 1 Bosc pear

Red Smoothie

  • 1 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1 cup frozen raspberries
  • ½ orange peeled
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground flaxseeds

Snack

  • ¼ cup roasted chickpeas

Green Smoothie

  • 2 cups green spinach, packed
  • 1 ripe pear, unpeeled, cored and chopped
  • 15 green or red grapes
  • ¾ cup fat-free plain Greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons chopped avocado
  • 1-2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

Can You Lose Weight on the Body Reset Diet?

Yes. While it may encourage less exercise than you're used to, it's likely the amount of calories you're consuming is drastically cut, too (around 1,200 to 1,300 per day).

Also, 10,000 steps a day may not seem like a lot as your only exercise, but it may be more difficult to achieve than you think if you're used to sitting for most of the day for work.

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Pros and Cons

There are a few pros of the Body Reset Diet.

The Pros

1. Promotes blending vs. juicing. Smoothies are a main component of the diet. It's a plus that the diet encourages blending instead of juicing, which is the direction many weight-loss diets take. By blending, you're keeping fiber in the equation, which promotes satiety, supporting overall weight-loss goals, according to a November 2015 paper published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

2. It doesn't require expensive meal delivery or other diet-specific packaged foods. Some weight-loss plans promote or require their own food products or meal delivery services to be successful with the diet (and these are often costly). The Body Reset Diet relies on everyday foods you can find at your local supermarket.

3. Encourages eating five meals a day, with a focus on fiber and protein. The diet encourages eating every couple of hours, along with consuming ample protein and fiber, which helps keep you feeling satisfied.

The Cons

Here are some of the potential cons to following the Body Reset Diet.

1. Very regimented and restricted. The diet is very regimented and specific as to what and how much you can eat when and on what day. It doesn't leave much room for flexibility.

2. Time consuming. Because the diet is so strict, you have to plan and shop for every meal, exactly as prescribed. This can be both mentally and physically time-consuming.

3. Eating smoothies two to three times a day can get monotonous. Enough said.

4. Not sustainable. Eating so few calories in such a regimented way is not sustainable for most people (read: 99.9 percent of humans). The diet is only intended to be a 15-day reset, so it was never intended to be a long-term solution, but there is little merit in eating a certain way for two weeks to just go back to eating the way you were before.

5. Not appropriate for everyone. If you have a history of disordered eating, are pregnant or are breastfeeding, you should avoid this diet. Also, you should consult your doctor before trying the Body Reset Diet if you have any blood glucose control issues or any chronic illnesses.

So, Should You Try It?

As a dietitian, I'm not a fan of short-term, quick-fix diet plans. They tend to lead you right back where you started, with perhaps a few extra pounds (restricting tends to lead to binging) and maybe even some shame and disappointment in yourself.

Instead, incorporate some of the positive tenets of the diet, like eating more whole foods — fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts and seeds, lean proteins — while limiting highly processed foods, alcohol, candy and sugary beverages. There's also no harm in adding one of the smoothie recipes into your daily menu rotation, but there's no need to consume three a day.

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