Saturday, May 30, 2015

Book Review- The Fast Metabolism Diet

I know I've been posting every Tuesday. For my book review though, I wanted to set it a part from my normal, everyday postings.

As a writer, I believe it is so important to read. Inspiration comes in all shapes and sizes. So not everything I review will be so and so's newest book (although there will be a few of those). Yes, I read fantasy and horror because those are the genres I like to write in but sometimes I want to read Andre Agassi's biography or reread Jane Eyre (one of my favorite novels :D ). There are so many good books out there! My lament is that I don't have enough time to read all of them.

With all that being said, here's my review of The Fast Metabolism Diet: Eat More Food and Lose More Weight by Haylie Pomroy.

Basic Impressions

The one thing that caught me about this diet book was the subtitle. Eat MORE food to LOSE weight. It definitely caught my attention and my curiosity. How I actually stumbled upon this diet program was a PBS two hour fundraising program special. Sometimes they feature Celtic Women or some Opera performed at a prestigious theater in Italy. But this time it was all about the health.

So after watching the show and learning about Haylie Pomroy's program and credentials, I decided to buy it for my Kindle app. The first chapter or two reads EXACTLY like the PBS infomercial fundraising special. In fact, it's basically word for word the first two chapters. I had already seen the program and bought it so I didn't need anymore convincing as to why I should do her diet and take Pomroy at her word that this works. Even if I hadn't seen the program, the blatant sales pitch type tone throughout the majority of the book is a definite turn off

I also want to add in here that Pomroy is not a medical doctor but a nutritionist who originally started working with animals. She noticed how certain foods fed to cattle at certain times change the composition of the muscle to fat ratio in cows and thought "Hey! I bet humans would be delicious delighted to change their fat body content as well!" I might be simplifying things with that statement but I did find it a little unusual that she translated animal nutrition into a fat burning diet for humans.

Here's the break down of her diet:

The whole philosophy and goal behind the diet is to repair your metabolism so that it can properly burn foods instead of working in starvation mode and/or being too slow. In the beginning she discusses the five major players in a healthy metabolism:

  1. The Liver
  2. The Adrenal Glands
  3. The Thyroid
  4. The Pituitary Gland
  5. And your actual body substance- White fat (the stuff you want to get ride of), brown fat (the good fat that helps you burn calories), and muscle
What you eat is designed to de-stress each of these players and get them working so that they do their jobs right.

The diet itself is broken down into three phases per week. The first two days- Monday and Tuesday- are Phase 1. Phase 1 is called the "Unwind" phase. Here you calm down your adrenal glands and get your body off the fight or flight stress mode. This part of the phase is high in healthy sugars and carbs. So oatmeal, brown rice, apples, oranges, and pineapple. All foods that are up there on the glycemic index*. This part of the diet also requires that you do not eat or cook with healthy fats.

Phase 2 is the Unlock Phase and is done for the next two days, Wednesday and Thursday. Here is where you get your body to start burning your fat stores while building muscles. This is the no carb, no fat, all meat and non-starchy veggies phase. Personally, I had a difficult time with these two days. Luckily, it is only two days. A very long two days but two days none-the-less.

Phase 3 is the Unleash the Burn Phase. This phase is done for three days. After forcing your body to burn it's own fats, here is where you reward it and yourself with a healthy dose of fats at almost every meal. Here you can eat a moderate amount of carbs and proteins but only fruits that rank low on the glycemic index. This was my favorite phase. It felt like I was indulging and it still made me lose weight.

Pomroy recommends doing at least four weeks of eating like this. If you still need to lose more weight or decrease high numbers like cholesterol, then continue the diet until you achieve these goals. She also has recommendations for vegetarians and vegans.


Like any healthy diet, you need to incorporate exercise in order to get the maximum benefits. Pomroy recommends exercising at least three times a week and to correspond certain exercises with the phases. Since Phase 1 is high in carbs, she recommends doing cardio exercises like going for a walk or a run. On Phase 2, it's weight lifting. The high protein is great for building muscles. Phase 3 is all about relaxing. Here, Pomroy recommends yoga, meditating, and/or getting a massage.


I did attempt this diet and I made it for two weeks. Between traveling and high level stress stuff like moving, my will power was lacking. However, I did lose 6 lbs during those two weeks and lost a bunch of inches off my waist and thighs. I'm actually going to attempt to try this diet again next week to see if it fully works.

My only big complaint about the diet is how restrictive it is (no wheat, corn, dairy, soy, refined sugars, caffeine, alcohol, dried fruit or fruit juices, artificial sweeteners, and no fat free/diet food). I get why you can't have them and she does a good job of explaining why but it was really difficult finding foods that fit the first four "Don't Rules". My second biggest complaint was the lack of what to do after the 28 days. She did mention what some of her clients did the in the past. I found the information to be vague especially when she literally repeated the same ideas over and over again for the first two-thirds of the book. I did discover after sleuthing around her site that she mentions an afterwards plan in one of her blog articles. I'm thinking the book could use a revise with that information included.

What I loved about the diet was the yummy recipes that everyone in the family enjoyed. They were different and since the phases changed every two days, so did the menu in terms of different types of food to eat. I also loved that her diet and book was not about fat shaming or guilting people.

The subtitle of the book was not wrong. When she said eat more to lose more she meant it. Pomroy did a good job of taking a part the calorie myth and getting people off that diet mentality of cutting and counting calories. As long as you eat all the foods to your corresponding phase, you lose weight. And not just pounds, inches. I never felt starved. I ate every three hours or so, the food was delicious, and the only thing that made me feel deprived was Phase 2. In fact, the servings recommended in the recipes are for those who are only trying to lose twenty pounds. If you want to lose more, you literally eat more per meal or snack. You finally get to enjoy food and not feel guilty.

Like I said, I'm definitely going to go for the full 28 days. I found the philosophy behind the diet to be positive. Fresh foods cooked healthy are good for you. It heals your body and eventually heals part of your soul. I recommend this diet to anyone who wants a more positive outlook on food and how it can heal your body. However, be prepared to stick to the book. This diet is not for the weak willed. You will have to exert willpower in order to achieve your health goals with this diet.**

*The glycemic index is rank of foods based on their sugar content when being digested in the body. This index is well known to diabetics as they have to balance out the amount of sugars in their body to keep from going too high or too low.

**I also recommend talking to your doctor before starting any kind of diet program like this one. It's important to get a trusted physician's opinion when your health is at risk.

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