Lean Belly Prescription

By Jim F

2238-leanbelly.jpgThe Lean Belly Prescription is a new book from Dr Travis Stork (M. D.). The urgent-care physician is focusing on visceral fat – adipose tissue that surrounds internal organs.

A large amount of research has shown that belly fat carries more health risks than fat stored elsewhere – such as hips or thighs.

You know you have visceral fat if your gut is round and firm, your waist is bigger than your hips, or your Wranglers have a waist size of 40 or higher for men, and 35 or higher for women.

Pick 3 Changes to Lose Visceral Fat

The essence of the book is a series of small tips or insights to bring about healthy weight loss. Stork suggests tackling 3 of these at a time, to have an increased chance of success. He appears to have chosen the number 3 due to a study from the Baylor College of Medicine:

One group of adults took on three simultaneous health goals, while a second group attempted a single goal. Eighteen months later, those who had embraced multiple healthy changes were 20 percent more likely to have stuck with them. (from MensHealth)

Here is a sampling of suggested changes:

  1. If you love pasta and rice: Simply switch all your refined carbs to whole-grain versions, and lose up to eight pounds in four weeks!
  2. If you love soda: Learn how to swap out 450 wasted calories with drinks that are even more delicious, and to lose up to four pounds in four weeks!
  3. If you love to graze: Nosh all day long on your favorite fruits and vegetables and lose up to six pounds in four weeks!
  4. If you love breakfast: Build yours around these simple lean protein/good carb principles and lose up to four pounds in four weeks!
  5. If you love to snack: Learn how to combine food groups to build snacks, and lose up to seven pounds in four weeks!

Meal Plans and Exercise

The book includes 4 weeks of meal plans and a basic workout plan. To be frank, in this information age we live in, much of this information can be gleaned fairly easily online (and, possibly even entirely from within Diet Blog – here’s 30+ useful tips to begin with). Good on Travis Stork for addressing the issue of visceral fat, but there seems to be little new on the offer here.

If the name rings a bell – it’s because Stork appeared on the Bachelor, and was host of daytime talk show The Doctors (which for some reason seems to qualify people to write diet books).

The Lean Belly Prescription: The Fast and Foolproof Diet & Weight-Loss Plan From America’s Top Urgent-Care Doctor by Travis Stork. Available at Amazon (around $14).


  1. Paula

    You are right on track with losing weight the healthy way and keeping it off. You should expect to lose 1 to 1 1/2 lbs per week which is 3 lbs in 2 weeks. Don’t get discourage it just takes time and remember it is a lifestyle change which will help you keep it off.

  2. Janek

    I bought the book it was a little hard to get my head around it, i have followed the menu for 2 weeks very disappointed i have lost 3lbs i have a sneeky suspicion the book was written for men not us women. I will continue for the 4 weeks, i am 63 so yes it is harder to lose weight, weight watchers was a bust although this is what my dr recommended so frustrating I have about 39lbs to lose . I must say though I do feel better on the inside no bloating, heartburn I feel lighter but the scale says NO,so dr the diet is not good for women !!!

    • Hmmmm

      are you expecting a life style change or a miracle? one and a half pounds a week is a great outcome, Especially if you FEEL better.

  3. CAROL


  4. colleen

    I started Atkins. I lost 11 pounds in 3 weeks. I also workout on my eliptical 30 minutes 5 to 6 days a week.

  5. Carol

    how much is this book and where do i find it?

  6. Scotty123

    There is a huge difference between carbs. Oatmeal and brown rice have a much lower glycemic index than wheat and even whole wheat and that is why people get into trouble on diets when they think they are doing good by eating whole wheat. If you keep your glycemic index down below 120 it is a no brainer that you will lose body fat with out starving your self and don’t worry about counting calories.

  7. Scotty123

    I totally a gree! It comes down to making choices. Hmmmm, do I eat 1 piece of pie at 450 caloires which would satisfy me for 15 minutes or do I eat entire bag of apple for the same amount of calories and be stuffed silly until the cows come home?

  8. Melanie Thomassian R.D.

    Hi Dan,
    I think as long as the balance of your diet overall is good, then that’s fine. A serving is 1/2 cup cooked, but there’s nothing to say you can’t eat two servings in one sitting. The problem is that some people focus too much on carby foods. For example, filling their whole dinner plate with pasta or potatoes, with only a tiny bunch of veg at the edge of their plate. That’s not a healthy, balanced meal.

  9. Dan

    Does oatmeal have to be in small amounts? I eat about 3/4’s cup of dry oatmeal each, which of course I then cook. I put ground flaxseed in it as well. Some people say grains don’t have that many nutrients, but I reread the nutrition information about Wheat Germ and it is packed with all kinds of nutrients, including Omega 3’s. I ate Wheat Germ years ago when I was really into Adelle Davis, who was really big on it. I haven’t eaten it for years, however.

  10. Melanie Thomassian R.D.

    I agree with you, small amounts of whole grain carbs are absolutely fine. In fact, I think it makes a diet more doable for people, so they can stick with it long-term, and at the end of the day, that’s what it’s all about.

  11. Pater Rolf Hermann Lingen

    “Simply switch all your refined carbs to whole-grain versions”
    Yes, I am a member of the “high carb” fraction: At least 50% of the daily calorie intake should consist of carbs.
    Sure, especially the “low carb” disciples consider all carb as equally bad, although the newest “Atkins” staff seems to tolerate a bit of whole-grain carbs.
    In any case: Carbs should be evaluate more carefully. Whole-grain carbs are indeed very different from sugar / refined carbs. Simply compare the amount of minerals, vitamins etc. in the respective food.
    The most important advice I give to everyone who wants to know how I could lose so much weight in such a shot time – and keep my weight! – is: Avoid sugar! Avoid refined carbs! Go for whole-grain stuff!

  12. Spectra

    I had 90 lbs to lose and I was able to do it pretty easily just by changing my diet from one of highly processed foods to one of mostly “real” food–veggies, fruits, eggs, etc. And I started walking every day. I get really sick of hearing fat people complain that they have “no control” over what they eat because of chemicals that are being released in their bodies. You don’t have to deprive yourself of good food, but you do have to realize that if you snack on celery and carrots and apples, it’s really hard to overdo it on the portion sizes.

  13. Dan

    I lost close to 100 pounds following similar ideas to Arrow Smith. DAILY exercise makes weight loss a LOT easier than just exercising 2 or 3 days a week. I would also add eating a moderate; not too low, not too high calorie diet. I would also increase water and fiber intake while also increasing the nutrient density of the diet. Write down what we eat. Exercise daily and get the heart rate between 60 and 80% of the maximum. Also, do both strength and cardio exercise.

  14. Ady

    Well, then, I believe you are only 10-15 lbs or so overweight. If you were more than that, you would know that it’s actually not as simple as you make it sound. The reality is that the more fat you have, the harder it is to lose it. And I’m not just being obvious right here. The thing is that most people that are overweight, lack energy, and control over their food intake. And that is not just because they love food too much, but because their bodies release too many chemicals at that moment and most don’t even realize they ate too much, or at least more than they wanted, until after the deed is done. Now, I’m not saying it’s impossible. I’m just saying it’s damn hard. And I know that from my own experience. Believe me, losing weight is one of the hardest thing most people will ever have to do.

  15. ArrowSmith

    I find the best way I lose bodyfat is:

    * exercise daily
    * eat smaller portions at regular meal intervals
    * don’t graze

    that’s really all there is to it. No magic bullet, sounds boring but that’s the way it is.

  16. Spectra

    Well, I can’t blame him for jumping on the “make an easy buck” bandwagon. Plenty of other celebrity health pros write books consisting of fairly straight-forward info and make a lot of money on them. At least Dr. Stork isn’t endorsing some weird supplement or something like that. I do agree with you that the info in this book is probably pretty “no duh” in nature, but some people are really clueless about some of the most basic diet principles.