Jumpstart to Skinny is a popular book and a quick weight loss plan from The Biggest Loser trainer, Bob Harper.
He says that dieters can lose up to 20 pounds in 21 days, but is almost a pound a day weight loss realistic?
Harper says that this Jumpstart plan should only be used for 3 weeks as a way to accelerate weight loss, especially helpful before special events like weddings, beach vacations, etc.
The plan revolves around 13 simple rules that dieters must follow if they expect to lose 20 pounds in 21 days.
Key Jumpstart to Skinny Rules
Bob Harper says that these rules are some of his insider celebrity secrets that he uses with his celebrity clients to get them ready for red carpet events and now everyone can benefit from these “secrets” as well.
These rules should be adhered to throughout the entire three-week program.
- Consume the proper proportions: 40 percent protein, 40 percent carbs and 20 percent fat.
- Cut back on calories. Women are allowed 800 calories per day and men can have 1200 calories.
- Don’t eat complex carbohydrates after breakfast.
- Drink more water.
- Get enough electrolytes.
- Do 45 minutes of aerobic exercise a day before breakfast.
- Five times a week do 15-20 minutes of Bob’s Jumpstart Moves.
- Cut down on salt.
- Consume fish oil.
- Eat unlimited amounts of the recommended vegetables.
- Eliminate fruit during week three.
- Avoid all alcohol.
- Have one to three espressos a day as a way to rev up the metabolism and perform better during exercise. Harper describes espresso as the “perfect caffeine delivery system” because it doesn’t promote jitters and is calorie free. He says to drink it black and have several throughout the day.
Egg whites, turkey breast, chicken, salmon, shrimp, cashews, Greek yogurt, walnuts, almond butter, flax seeds, oatmeal, quinoa, whole grain pasta, Ezekiel bread, apples, berries, watermelon, mango, spinach, broccoli, celery, avocado, cucumber, red pepper, extra-virgin olive oil, herbs and spices, coffee.
Jumpstart to Skinny is designed to make this 3 week diet a “no brainer”. Harper provides dieters with the following:
- Grocery lists of exactly what to buy.
- 3 weeks worth of meal plans that tell dieters exactly what to eat.
- Recipes that show dieters exactly how to make the food.
- Detailed descriptions of which exercises to do.
Sample Jumpstart Meal Plan
16 ounces water
8 ounces electrolyte replacement
Chicken and Celery Salad
Roast mixed veggies
Costs and Expenses
Jumpstart to Skinny: The Simple 3-Week Plan for Supercharged Weight Loss retails at $25.
- Offers rapid results for dieters who want to lose weight for a special occasion.
- Includes a 3-week meal plan with recipes.
- Provides a structured exercise program.
- Calories are very low, which may cause fatigue, hunger and a risk of nutritional deficiency.
- Offers a “quick-fix” approach, which usually results in rebound weight gain once normal eating is resumed.
- Advocates the consumption of caffeine-containing beverages, which may result in adverse health effects for some individuals.
Cut Way Back on Calories
You will be embarking on what nutritionists refer to as a very low-calorie diet or VCLD. These plans are often used in a medical setting for individuals who are dangerously obese. Your daily calorie allowance equates to:
Women: 800 calories
Men: 1200 calories
The majority of health experts does not generally recommend diets with such dramatic calorie restriction. They may increase the risk of nutrient deficiencies and have a negative effect on metabolism.
However, Harper reminds readers that the program was designed as a short-term approach for achieving rapid weight loss. At the end of the three weeks, you should switch to a more sustainable healthy eating plan.
Is Bob Harper a Nutritionist?
No, and Jumpstart to Skinny seems to undermine a healthy approach to weight loss. While some of the principles in the book will promote rapid weight loss, I think the overall message of the book is that it is acceptable to “crash diet”.
This type of philosophy contributes to unhealthy yoyo dieting instead of losing weight gradually and keeping it off by changing one’s lifestyle and unhealthy relationship with food.
Also, some of his scientific rational is pretty flimsy. He claims that fructose causes the body to store fat, but the study that he is referring to involved high fructose corn syrup, not the simple fructose found in whole fruit. It’s a big stretch of that study’s data to say that a woman on an 800 calorie diet would store fat if she ate an apple.
While losing 20 pounds in 21 days may sound appealing, I think Jumpstart to Skinny probably isn’t a very healthy approach to do so.
What do you think?
Jumpstart to Skinny is available from Amazon here.