As the saying goes, "If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is." At least that's what the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics says about fad diets, which is what you would call the Progresso Soup Diet. Like other soup diets, the idea behind the Progresso version is that you replace your usual meals with the soup to help you lose weight. While you might lose weight following the diet, you may have a hard time keeping it off.
Progresso Diet Details
The Progresso Soup diet started as a contest created by Progresso to show that the soup could help you lose weight. The diet requires that you replace two to three of your regular meals with a can of soup. The diet does not specify which line of soups to eat. But Progresso does sell a line of light soups that contain 60 to 100 calories per serving. This diet is not meant for long-term use, according to the Progresso Soup Diet website.
How It Helps You Lose
By replacing most of your meals with a low-calorie soup, the Progresso Soup Diet helps you lose weight by restricting calories. In essence, if you replace two out of your three meals with a light soup, and eat a sensible dinner that contains 400 to 600 calories, you may be limiting your overall calorie intake to 640 to 1,000 calories a day. Limiting your intake to this extreme should only be done under the watchful eye of a doctor. Additionally, when you restrict calories to lose weight quickly, you are more than likely losing muscle and water, not fat.
Smarter Ways to Lose With Soup
Hunger can be a major setback for anyone trying to lose weight. One way to combat hunger is by filling your diet with low-energy-dense foods, which are foods that have few calories compared to their portion size. Broth-based soup is considered a low-energy-dense food. Eating a bowl of broth-based soup, such as one of the Progresso light soups, before a meal may help fill you up so you eat less of your main meal. Be aware that while soup can make a healthy addition to your diet, it is source of sodium. Read labels and track your intake to help keep your sodium intake to less than 2,300 milligrams a day.
Stop the Yo-Yo
If you want to lose weight and keep it off, it's better to lose it slowly at a rate of 1 to 2 pounds a week following a diet that incorporates healthy lifestyle changes. That means eating a variety of foods from all the food groups so that you get all the nutrients you need to stay healthy. To help keep portions, and calories, in check use smaller plates, bowls and cups. Don't skip meals, especially breakfast.
- Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: How Can I Spot a Fad Diet?
- ProgressoSoupDiet.com: Progresso Soup Diet
- Progresso: Progresso Soup: Light
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Low-Energy-Dense Foods and Weight Management: Cutting Calories While Controlling Hunger
- FamilyDoctor.org: Nutrition for Weight Loss: What You Need to Know About Fad Diets
- Weight-Control Information Network: Very Low-Calorie Diets
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Get the Facts: Sodium and the Dietary Guidelines