At the holiday party for Guerrilla Economics (of which I’m a partner with my husband), we were happily stuffing our faces with “holiday cheer,” when one one of the women in the group said that she was going to start on the Fresh Diet after the holidays. I’d never heard of it. She explained that the the Fresh Diet plan delivers your meals fresh (not frozen or in preserved format) daily, to your door.
That sounded very interesting.
Most if not all of the other diet food plans I knew about sent frozen or preserved meals in bulk which I didn’t like, so I went to www.thefreshdiet.com and checked it out. I liked the fact that after you have selected one of three calorie ranges (based upon your weight loss goals) you can choose from four items for Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, a snack, and a dessert. You can list foods that you don’t like and you will be alerted if a meal has something you don’t like in it. Everything comes in an insulated bag with several cool packs. You can choose 5 days or a full week (I chose the 5 day plan) which is great for people who travel or who, like me, are out and about a lot. You can also stop a delivery within 72 hours, but if you have an emergency at the last minute, your food is going to come and sit at your door. This has happened once, but the cool packs kept the food from spoiling so I dumped anything I thought might be “problematic” and put the rest in the freezer.
Initially, I received a one week editor’s trial. But Fashion Week intervened, and I travel a great deal, so it was a challenge to deal with the diet and stay on it. So I opted to pay for a month’s trial, and my husband John agreed to go on it with me.
The word “diet” is really a bad way to think about the Fresh Diet. For starters, you aren’t doing a cleanse, swilling juices or canned concoctions, eating cabbage soup, or eliminating anything from the basic food groups. The way the Fresh Diet works is to give you healthy choices that are truly delicious, but they are small. Yes, it’s really about portion control. You quickly learn that you’ve been eating enough for two (or more) people, and when the dinner protein is the size of a woman’s fist, or you get only half a sandwich, it’s easy to feel hungry. The woman who started the diet (about a month earlier) than I did said her stomach quickly shrunk and after the first week she wasn’t hungry anymore. But honestly, as I go into the second full week of the Fresh Diet, I have to admit that I still am hungry most of the time. I really hope that improves with time, and I am confident it will.
As someone who attends lots of events each week, it’s really a challenge not to reach for the smoked salmon or the baby quiche plus a glass of something alcoholic. Drinking a lot of water really hasn’t helped at all with the hunger pains. And also, the Fresh Diet doesn’t really suggest “safe” foods that you can snack on if you really need to. I am using what I hope is common sense about this. If you are starving, really truly hungry, a “little something extra” won’t really sabotage your results. A handful of almonds, a boiled egg, a few carrot sticks helped a bit. Fruit isn’t really encouraged as an addition since it has a lot of natural sugar, but last night after coming home from the the 2012 Health and Nutrition Editor Showcase where there were dozens and dozens of samples and a free bar (none of which I ate), I did eat a few apple slices. My husband John started a week later than I did and I notice his portions are double the size of mine. But he too is complaining that he’s hungry.
But on the plus side, the food is truly good. There have been few disappointments and a lot of tasty meals. Favorite items include all of the cheesecakes and for breakfast, the Whole Wheat Waffles with Fresh Blackberries & Papaya Yogurt. Snacks of chocolate-dripped figs, and even a tiny hamburger slider, seriously satisfy.
Although I’m not usually a tofu fan, the Tofu Caesar Salad with Romaine Lettuce, Sun-Dried Tomato, European Cucumber & Caesar Dressing was also delicious and satisfying. Most of the dinners have been delicious and I can’t pick just one standout.
I have a few weeks to go, and so far in week two I’ve lost about 7 pounds, although I know a lot of that must be initial water weight. Still, the diet has already made me very mindful of how mindlessly I sometimes eat food and how much “junk” I used to eat. I should know better! Long ago, I was an image consult to a special-interest diet plan called “Start Fresh” and helped women make healthy choices and lose weight. And, for a short period of time, tried Weight Watchers to lose that last ten pounds that were a problem. But I disliked analyzing everything I ate for the points, and my local “group” talked about nothing food for most of the meetings, making me hungry when initially, I wasn’t! In later years I occasionally investigated other diet plans that delivered food, but most of them did so by the week or month and these weren’t fresh food meals. The idea of getting all my meals at once for more than a day or two, frozen or so preserved that they were like “airplane” meals, and then having to store them, wasn’t at all appealing.
The Fresh Diet’s food-by-the-day of freshly prepared meals distinguishes it from other plans. If you wish, you can make the plan versatile and opt for twice weekly delivery via Fed-Ex right to your doorstep in our temperature controlled boxes with ice packs to keep your food at the optimal temperature until you are able to refrigerate your meals). All the food containers are microwave safe. If you’re not Oprah or a Hollywood star and can’t afford a personal chef, the Fresh Diet really makes you feel like you do have one workign just for you!
The Fresh Diet starts at $44.99 per day (you may find coupons and deals online if you look). That may sound expensive, but when you start to figure out what the average adult spends on meals, take-out, restaurants, bars, and lunches out, it looks a lot more reasonable.
Please visit the Advice Sisters web site http://advicesisters.net as I’ll be continuing the Fresh Diet and reporting on my progress. Feel free to ask me questions either here in comments or on twitter @advicesisters. I’d love to connect with you. Meanwhile, you can check out the plan for yourself at www.thefreshdiet.com