Posted by: Chris Maloney | August 29, 2012

Can You Really Lose Seventeen Pounds In Five Days On The Harcombe Diet? Maybe.

Eat less do more

Eat less do more (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The cover of the magazines this week have the Harcombe Diet, which features seventeen pounds of weight loss in five days.  Since my personal weight gain has been sixteen pounds in a weekend and eight pounds in a day, I understand that this is possible, but I also know that it has very to do with calories.

The Harcombe Diet takes a few different pieces of the food puzzle and mixes them together in a new way.  Instead of Candida, food intolerance, and hypoglycemia, we have all three.

If you happen to be allergic to some food you are eating, then stopping your exposure to that food can lead to rapid, sustained weight loss.  Remember the “drop twelve dress sizes” lady from a few months ago?  The last fifty pounds of her weight loss was a dairy allergy she finally figured out.

Candida can increase inflammation, and hypoglycemia can make your hormones go nuts.  So all three have the possibility of leading to rapid weight loss.

Will that weight loss be sustainable?  That’s the problem.  People tend to eat foods that they like even when they know those foods are bad for them.  If instead of chocolate cheesecake being bad for you because of calories now it’s bad for you because of your dairy allergy, how much more effective is will power going to be over a lifetime?

Another piece of many of the newer diets is a binge day, which builds in human nature to a diet program.  Harcombe builds this a little into her stage three, but she recommends staying on the diet even when on vacation, or “on holiday” as she would say.  Here’s a lovely video of her giving some pointers about her diet for holiday travelers.

If, and only if, you can lead a life on the Harcombe diet will it lead to permanent weight loss.  Too often even my most determined patients will “fall off the wagon” within even a few weeks because they can’t really see the harm in having a little bit of something.

So cudos to Harcombe  for the mix-and-match, but I think this will be one more diet that doesn’t lead to permanent weight loss because people just don’t follow a single diet for a lifetime.

Instead of focusing on the food, we need to refocus on the hormones behind the food.  Once people understand the push behind their cravings, they can take steps to modify their reactions before they occur.



  1. […] Can You Really Lose Seventeen Pounds In Five Days On The Harcombe Diet? Maybe. ( […]

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