British Heart Foundation 3 Day Diet
About The BHF Diet
The BHF Diet, also known as the British Heart Foundation 3 Day Diet, or simply as the British Heart Foundation Diet, is a fairly simple 3 day diet. Despite the name, the British Heart Foundation denies any involvement with this diet. In fact, they flat out recommend that no one follow this diet and recommend that would be dieters follow a healthy eating plan rather than any specific diet at all. Their website does list their food recommendations, but will not discuss the protocol for following the diet that’s named after them for concern that people will consider that an endorsement of the diet.
Other names for this diet include, but are not limited to: 3 Day Diet, American Heart Association 3 Day Diet, the Greenlane Diet, the Spokane Heart Diet, the Cleveland Clinic Diet, the Miami Heart Institute Diet, Miami Heart Chemical Diet, Miami Heart Disease 3 Day Diet, the 3 Day Chemical Breakdown Diet, the British Heart Foundation Chemical Diet, the 3 Day Cardiac Diet, the Pre-Op Diet, 3 Day Heart Diet, the 3 Day Hospital Diet and many, many others. Some wishful thinkers even call it the Day Detox Diet.
This 3-day diet works on the principle of incredibly low calorie intake and dehydration. While its proponents claim that this diet is especially designed to chemically break down fat, the part of this diet that provides the bulk of the weight loss is that the dieter dehydrates and loses several pounds of water weight. This is not healthy, nor does it last for more than a few days at most after the dieter returns to normal eating. In addition, the super low calorie intake can cause your body to go into starvation mode, which can cause all manner of health problems in addition to lowering your metabolism, which in turn will cause you to gain weight- not lose it.
Origin Of The BHF Diet
No one seems to really know what the origin of the BHF diet really is. Everyone to whom the diet is attributed (British Heart Foundation, American Heart Association, et al – see above for a more complete list) denies any involvement in the formation of this diet, or in promoting this kind of crash diet.
BHF Diet Menu Plan
The BHF 3 day diet menu plan is fairly simple. 5 glasses of plain water are to be consumed every day. Breakfast is 5 dry crackers or a piece of dry toast, 1 slice of cheddar cheese, a small apple, and a cup of black coffee or tea. Lunch is a boiled egg and a slice of dry toast, black coffee, tea, or water. Dinner allows 1 cup of tuna (about 3 oz), 1 cup of carrots or beets, 1 cup of cauliflower, 1/2 melon, and 4oz vanilla ice cream.
There are variations and substitutions depending on your source and the name of the diet. Some of these include half a grapefruit or unsweetened juice, steak, chicken, varied veggies and fruits, and the American Heart Association version calls for hot dogs. Some versions specify diet ice cream (though diet or not, all say vanilla). Certain versions allow cottage cheese to be substituted for the tuna.
BHF Diet Protocol
Depending on your source for learning about the BHF diet, you may be told that you can use substitutions or you may be told to follow the diet exactly. The key to this diet is in dehydrating your body- this provides quick water weight loss which is what helps you to fit into that slinky little dress or bikini with little notice. However, the 700 calories a day is not sustainable, and will likely lead to weight gain or yo-yo dieting if followed for too long.
The second part of this 3 day diet is that you eat normally for 4 days after carefully following the BHF diet for 3 days. If you need to lose more weight after the 4 normal days, you’re to diet for 3 more days, and then eat normally for 4 days following that.
If you choose to follow the BHF 3 day diet plan, then for best results you should find one version that seems doable to you and stick to it exactly. If you begin making substitutions it will be very difficult to track your calorie intake.
BHF Diet Review
In my opinion, the BHF diet is a very unsafe way to try to lose weight. However, it does encourage a lot of very healthy foods. Cauliflower is high in vitamin C, carrots and beets are packed with nutrition. Fresh tuna has healthy Omega-3′s though canned tuna does not (for the healthiest canned tuna, try white tuna and not chunk light). Egg yolks contain almost every nutrient that our bodies need (though not in full doses) and the egg white is held up as the medical standard against which all other proteins are measured.
So while I can not encourage this diet for health because of the low calorie count, following this diet for 3 days may encourage dieters to continue eating more vegetables and fewer processed foods after the BHF diet is over.
In the end, I have to suggest that anyone considering this diet discuss it with their doctor or nutritionist, particularly if planning to make it a lifestyle change rather than limiting it to 1 bout of 3 day hard dieting. If you want to talk to someone who’s already tried this diet, or if you’d like to answer questions about it yourself, please visit the forum thread for the BHF diet.Discuss the 3 Day Diet