I've been on medifast since last year and have lost a significant amount of weight on it, so I believe I'm qualified to talk about what I believe are the positives and negatives (or the pros and cons) of this diet. This is only my opinion and yours may differ. It is based upon my own experience and those of friends and coworkers also on the weight loss system as well as numerous nice people I've met on weight loss forums.
Pluses: I'll discuss the pluses first because they are more dominant in my mind as I honestly believe they far out way the minuses.
1. Effectiveness. I've come to believe that if you follow the diet as designed, you just can not help but lose weight. I honestly don't know anyone who used the diet as written (and who didn't cheat or give up) who failed or didn't lose a decent amount of pounds. Medifast is designed to be low in calories and carbs and high in protein so it puts your body in a metabolic state called ketosis which tricks your body into burning its own fat. (Much like Atkins without the pain of having to eat meat all of the time. ) This is very effective for many people and it can give very quick and dramatic results which can in turn be very motivating. Seeing that it was really working greatly helped me in sticking with it.
2. Convenience: Many of the foods in this diet are grab and go and require very little assembly. The bars for example require only that your remove the wrapper. The puddings, some of the shakes, and the soups, stews, and cappuccinos, etc. require only a few minutes to assemble. (You do have to mix the 55 shakes, but this only takes seconds. If you don't have the time, there are also ready to drink shakes that are almost like a kid's juice box was come ready to go. ) There is one main “lean and green meal" that you'll make yourself each day. But, for the other five times that you eat (you eat six times per day on medifast), you'll eat the company's prepackaged meals. I very much like this as I don't have time to research, plan, and prepare six meals per day.
3. Eating Frequently (Six Times Per Day): When I was first researching medifast, I didn't know how I would handle eating so often. But, my research (as well as shows like The Biggest Loser) indicated that eating frequently is necessary to boost metabolism. Also, in my experience, eating so often really helps with hunger and cravings. It's really not that taxing because as I said earlier the foods are quick and easy.
Minuses: Now onto what might be considered cons or minuses.
1. Making Your Lean And Green Meal: To be fair, all the lean and green meal really encompasses is lean protein and veggies (salad, stir fry, etc. ), so this needn't be hard. But, I suppose I get spoiled with having everything provided for me. To make my one main meal as convenient as possible, I make healthful meals for my entire family so that I don't have to make separate foods for the dieters and non dieters. I also include extra food for them, which includes things that are contrary to my goals (that I wouldn't touch now). I understand the need for fresh, healthful foods each day. Truly I do. I guess that I've become spoiled by having most of my foods available for me, so having to make the main meal myself sometimes annoys me. (However, I'm not a person who likes to cook in general and I know many of my friends look forward to their larger meal. )
2. Routine: This one is hard for me because over time, I actually have grown to rather like the predictability of this diet. Having too many dieting or food decisions to make is a dangerous thing for me. However, I do know folks at work and on the forums who are very passionate about food. They love watching The Food Network and Martha Stewart. For these guys, being able to only cook once per day and keeping it simple is difficult. Yes, there are recipes that allow you to make cookies, cakes, and treats using medifast's puddings and shakes, but these are not the kind of recipes that generally excite “foodies. " If you generally love to cook and plan meals, you may be frustrated at first, at least until you start to see results.
3 Cost: Now that the cost of groceries and gas are becoming ridiculously high, this isn't as much of an issue. Most medifast plans and packages costs about $8 - $10 per day. This is not including your lean and green meal of course, but even so, this is typically less than groceries or eating out. Still, it's hard for some folks to be perfectly at peace with buying extra food just for them outside of their family's grocery bill. I understand this because this was my thinking too. But, frankly, the money just hasn't been an issue. There are always coupons and specials running and I suppose I was in denial about how much I actually spent on Starbucks and lunches out. Now, I mix the medifast hot chocolate and cappuccino for my morning mocha and usually eat a lunch wrap or burrito using the plan's chili and eggs. This actually saves me money most days. Admittedly, it's not exactly the same taste wise, but I've learned that nothing taste as good as think looks or feels.
Lindsey Price is the author of the ebook “Getting The Most Out Of Medifast, " which includes tips, how tos, recipes and coupons (including two weeks free) and specials. To get a free copy (immediate download / no information required), click here . You can also visit Lindsey's diet review website at http://geniefrancisdietreview.blogspot.com/