What Is the Ideal Protein Diet?

A variety of methods exist for achieving weight loss, and some methods can help when you've been unsuccessful in the past. The Ideal Protein diet is a medically prescribed weight loss program meant for individuals who either have a lot of weight to lose or failed to lose weight from diet and exercise alone. This type of diet is only available through licensed clinics and health care professionals. Consult your doctor to determine if this plan's right for you.

The ideal protein diet helps your body get better at burning fat. (Image: Olga Ignatova/iStock/GettyImages)

Tip

The Ideal Protein diet is a medically supervised weight-loss program meant to help those who need to lose a lot of weight quickly and safely. It consists of high-protein meal replacement products that help keep calorie intake low to support your weight loss efforts, while supplying all the vital nutrients your body needs to maintain health.

Premise Behind Ideal Protein

The goal of the Ideal Protein diet is to stabilize blood sugar and promote weight loss by providing your body with an optimal amount of pure protein. The program involves purchasing preportioned, prepackaged pure protein diet foods specifically formulated so they're low in carbohydrates and fat.

The Ideal Protein plan restricts carbohydrate intake to deplete your body's stored glucose in an effort to encourage your body to burn fat for fuel. Within about three days on the diet, your glucose reserves run out, and your body begins burning fat, placing you into a state of ketosis.

Dramatic Loss During Phase One

The average weight loss for women following the Ideal Protein diet is 3 to 5 pounds per week and 5 to 7 pounds for men. The Ideal Protein diet employs a four-phase protocol. During stage one, you consume three Ideal Protein meals and one regular meal that you prepare yourself. The self-prepared meal must be low carb, low fat and comprised of fresh vegetables, lettuce and the protein of your choice. You remain in phase one until you reach 70 to 80 percent of your weight loss goal.

Transitioning to Real Food

In phase two, you decrease the number of Ideal Protein meals you consume and increase self-prepared meals. You reduce to two pure protein diet meals from the Ideal Protein menus and increase to two self-made meals, which follow the same composition guidelines as in phase one. Then you remain in phase two until you reach 100 percent of your weight loss goal.

In phase three, you reintroduce moderate amounts of carbohydrates and fat and decrease your Ideal Protein meals to one per day and have two regular meals. When you reach phase four, you return to normal eating and maintain your weight loss by making healthier food choices.

Variety of Pre-Packaged Foods

Ideal Protein provides a variety of pure protein diet foods to choose from to help you stay in ketosis for fat loss. Breakfast items include cheese omelet, cereal, oatmeal, pancakes, muffins and crepes. Available lunch foods include vegetable chili, spaghetti, beef stew, chicken soup, leek soup and mushroom soup. For snacks, you can choose from various flavors of bars, puddings, nuts, puffs and yogurt drinks.

You shouldn't use Ideal Protein if you have Type 1 diabetes, liver disease, soy allergies or kidney disease. Ideal Protein may not be appropriate for other conditions not listed here, so consult your physician first.

Losing weight quickly also increases your risk of gallstones, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.

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