What Is The Potato Weight-reduction plan? – Health Fitness, Diets, Weight Loss

What Is The Potato Weight-reduction plan?

At Verywell, we consider there isn’t any one-size-fits-all strategy to a wholesome life-style. Profitable consuming plans have to be individualized and take the entire individual into consideration. Previous to beginning a brand new food plan plan, seek the advice of along with your healthcare supplier or a registered dietitian, particularly in case you have an underlying well being situation.

Potatoes are a wonderful supply of fiber, nutritional vitamins, minerals, and even protein, however are these complex-carbohydrate-rich root veggies good for weight reduction? Proponents of the potato food plan consider so with claims which you can lose a few pound per week.

The potato food plan is a short-term speedy weight reduction answer. You guessed it—the primary supply of energy on this food plan is potatoes. There are numerous variations of the potato food plan, however in its simplest kind, followers eat nothing however plain potatoes for a number of days. Since this food plan is restrictive, it isn’t meant to be adopted long-term.

Potatoes are naturally low in fats and excessive in fiber and carbs, which provide help to really feel fuller for longer, so the potato food plan could provide help to shed a number of kilos. Nevertheless, it’s doubtless not a sustainable answer because it’s not a assorted and balanced food plan.

Right here is what to anticipate on the potato food plan: professionals, cons, meals to eat, and meals to keep away from.


Individuals have been consuming a variation of the potato food plan since 1849 when potatoes had been prescribed to assist individuals dwelling an opulent life-style turn out to be leaner. Potatoes are additionally a staple in lots of cultures worldwide, although consuming potatoes as a part of a nutritious diet and consuming a potato-only food plan are a lot completely different.

In 2016, the potato food plan (aka the potato hack food plan) regained its recognition partly attributable to Tim Steele’s e-book, The Potato Hack: Weight Loss Simplified, which was impressed by the 1849 model of the potato food plan. Steele’s model of the potato hack food plan claims that followers can count on to lose round 1 pound per day. Along with weight reduction, the three to 5-day intervention claims to advertise a stronger immune system, elevated vitality ranges, improved sleep, and extra. 

This plan can also be thought to enhance digestion. In keeping with the creator of the potato hack food plan, high-fiber meals like potatoes create a various intestinal microbiome which will assist with circumstances like gastroesophageal reflux illness (GERD), irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), inflammatory bowel illness (IBD), and small intestinal bacterial overgrowths (SIBO).

Different diets, equivalent to The Starch Resolution, closely depend on potatoes as a part of their packages. The Starch Resolution is predicated on a e-book by John A. McDougall, a doctor who advocates for a plant-based life-style predominantly powered by starches. Whereas potatoes aren’t the one compliant starch on The Starch Resolution, they’re a go-to meals on this high-starch food plan.

Different types of the potato food plan have since emerged since its rising recognition in 2016, together with these which can be much less strict. As a substitute of a food plan based mostly solely on potatoes, some looser variations enable different complete, plant-based meals like greens, fruits, grains, legumes, nuts, and seeds. Much less restrictive variations of the potato food plan could also be extra sustainable long-term.

What Specialists Say

“Just like the cabbage soup food plan, grapefruit food plan, and so many others earlier than it, the potato food plan promotes specializing in weight reasonably than well being, on the expense of well being. The restrictive food plan not solely poses a danger for not assembly nutrient wants, however it additionally promotes worry of sure meals, slicing out massive teams of meals, and consuming based mostly on an inventory of “authorised” meals reasonably than honoring your physique’s cues, all of which may contribute to disordered consuming.”

Willow Jarosh, MS, RD

What Can You Eat?

The potato food plan is designed to be adopted short-term for fast weight reduction. Usually, followers of this food plan will take part for 2-5 days in a row, although some comply with the food plan for as much as per week at a time. 

There have even been circumstances the place individuals have adopted a food plan consisting of solely potatoes for longer durations of time. This features a man named Andrew Taylor, founding father of SpudFit, who misplaced 121 kilos in a 12 months by consuming nothing however potatoes.

Whereas there are completely different variations, all potato diets share that they’re vegan, low in dietary fats, and encourage consuming till satiated. As a substitute of weighing parts or counting energy, followers of the potato food plan are inspired to eat till they’re full.

What You Must Know

There is no such thing as a set schedule for meals on the potato food plan. Since followers can eat till they’re full, important meals like breakfast, lunch, and dinner in addition to snacks are allowed. 

To make the potato food plan extra balanced and sustainable, you may embrace complete plant-based meals like fruits, greens, grains, and legumes. These meals are naturally decrease in fats whereas being wealthy sources of protein, fiber, nutritional vitamins, and minerals.

Although dietary fats will not be really helpful on the short-term potato food plan, it is a vital a part of any balanced food plan. A really low fats or fat-free food plan will not be sustainable. If you happen to plan on following a food plan that’s loosely impressed by the potato food plan, contemplate including wholesome fat like nuts, seeds, and avocado.

The potato food plan is already a cheap plan since potatoes are reasonably priced. Conventionally grown potatoes are much more cost-effective than natural. Consuming all natural potatoes will not be required on this food plan, although it’s elective for many who need to restrict their publicity to pesticides used throughout farming.

What to Eat

What to Eat

  • All styles of potatoes

  • Entire plant-based meals (elective)

  • Minimal condiments and seasonings (elective)

  • Espresso, tea, and water

What To not Eat

  • Animal merchandise like meat, fish, dairy, or eggs

  • Added fat like butter or vegetable oils

  • Processed and refined meals

Plain Potatoes

Within the strictest type of the potato food plan, you’ll eat nothing however plain potatoes for a number of days at a time. Designed for optimum weight reduction over a brief time frame, the food plan forbids added fat like butter, vegetable oil, nuts, seeds, and avocado. It is necessary to notice that these kind of wholesome fat may also help to advertise the absorption of key vitamins in potatoes.

The number of potatoes allowed is dependent upon the model of the potato food plan you comply with. If you happen to comply with Steele’s potato hack food plan, persist with plain white potatoes. If you happen to comply with a extra lenient model, different varieties, equivalent to yellow, pink, and candy potatoes, are additionally allowed.

The strategy of making ready the potatoes is simply as necessary as the kind of potatoes themselves. Cooking strategies that require added fats are usually not inspired, equivalent to frying. Follow cooking strategies that don’t require added fats like boiling, steaming, baking, and roasting.

Figuring out what number of potatoes to eat in a day is dependent upon every particular person. Almost all variations of the potato food plan advocate consuming till happy, so the quantity varies per individual. A common suggestion is to eat roughly two to 5 kilos of potatoes per day. You will need to eat sufficient energy on this food plan since it’s restrictive and followers could not get sufficient vitamins in the event that they eat too few energy.

Entire Plant-Based mostly Meals

The potato food plan in its purest kind doesn’t enable for any extra meals apart from potatoes, even nutrient-dense meals like vegetables and fruit. 

Nevertheless, looser types of the potato food plan are designed to be extra sustainable long-term. Relying on the model of the potato food plan that you just comply with, you might be able to eat unprocessed meals of their complete varieties alongside potatoes. This consists of fruits, greens, legumes, and grains which can be naturally decrease in fats. Plant-based meals which can be naturally larger in fats, like nuts, seeds, and avocado, could also be restricted or not really helpful. 

Even when different plant-based meals are permitted, potatoes ought to make up the majority of your plate. These extra meals ought to be seen as a complement to potatoes for his or her dietary content material.

Condiments and Seasonings

Condiments, sauces, and seasonings are additionally restricted on the strict potato food plan. In much less strict variations, low-fat condiments like mustard and home made ketchup are allowed in small portions.

Salt can also be allowed to season the potatoes, however it isn’t inspired.

Usually, condiments and seasonings ought to be made with fat-free substances and stored to a minimal.


Water, plain espresso, and plain tea are the one drinks allowed on the potato food plan. You will need to keep hydrated, so loads of water is inspired whereas on and off the potato food plan.

Animal Merchandise

All variations of the potato food plan are vegan. This doesn’t imply that the potato food plan is supposed just for vegans. Since it’s a short-term food plan, vegans and non-vegans alike can partake within the potato food plan. 

Whereas following the food plan, all animal merchandise are prohibited. The potato food plan is a low-fat food plan, so high-fat, animal-derived meals like butter, cheese, eggs, fatty meat, fatty fish, and processed meat ought to be averted.

Added Fat

Like animal merchandise, overt fat equivalent to vegetable oils are strictly prohibited on the potato food plan. For the reason that potato food plan is a low-fat food plan, it’s clear to see why added fat are usually not allowed. Fat are a dense supply of energy, so even small quantities of added fat add up shortly. 

As a substitute, the potato food plan encourages quantity consuming. That is while you refill on meals which can be naturally decrease in energy. Although you eat fewer energy all through the day, consuming a big quantity leaves you feeling full and satiated.

Processed and Refined Meals

The potato food plan encourages you to eat complete unprocessed meals through the period of the plan. Naturally, processed meals don’t match into this class since they might be excessive in energy, fats, and sodium. In addition they are typically decrease in vitamins than complete meals. For instance, a baked potato is extra nutritious than French fries, potato chips, and tater tots although they’re all made with potatoes. 

Even processed meals which can be vegan-friendly, equivalent to pasta, bread, and chips, ought to be averted. Refined meals like donuts, muffins, and cereals are usually not permitted since they might be excessive in sugar and fats.

Professionals and Cons


  • Could promote weight reduction

  • Quick-term

  • Could enhance digestion

  • Simple to comply with


  • Unsustainable

  • Not a balanced or assorted food plan

  • Weight reduction could also be short-term


Could Promote Weight Loss

The potato food plan is particularly designed for weight reduction. When it was launched in 1849 and when it made a comeback in 2016, the potato food plan has at all times been a weight reduction answer. It’s an efficient type of weight reduction as a result of it’s naturally low in fats and decrease in energy. Nevertheless, the load loss is probably not sustainable because the food plan is just adopted for 3 to 5 days at a time.

Quick-Time period

If you happen to want shorter diets for fast outcomes, it’s possible you’ll respect that the potato food plan solely lasts for 3-5 days. Whereas the potato hack food plan founder claims you may lose as much as 1 pound per day, this isn’t a sensible objective for everybody.

Could Enhance Digestion

Some individuals are drawn to the potato food plan not just for the load loss advantages but additionally the digestive advantages. Potatoes are easy-to-digest meals, making this food plan light on the gastrointestinal tract. Potatoes are additionally a wealthy supply of fiber, which retains meals transferring alongside within the digestive system.

Simple to Observe

Mono diets just like the potato food plan have one benefit over practically some other food plan—they’re the simplest to comply with. It’s straightforward to know what’s allowed on the food plan and what to keep away from. Individuals who wrestle to comply with diets with difficult guidelines will respect the simplicity of the potato food plan.



Consuming just one meals, even root greens, will not be sustainable long-term. Although the potato food plan is labeled a short-term fad food plan, there have been some followers who’ve caught to simply potatoes for lengthy durations of time—as much as one 12 months. For the typical individual, this food plan will not be sustainable as a result of it doesn’t meet the suggestions for a balanced food plan.

Not a Balanced or Diverse Weight-reduction plan

Many meals which can be wealthy in vitamins are usually not allowed on the potato food plan. Although potatoes themselves are fairly nutritious, they do lack some key vitamins. The potato food plan could lead to dietary deficiencies if adopted long-term.

Weight Loss Could Be Quick-Time period

Any weight misplaced throughout very quick fad diets is probably not stored off long-term. This can be water weight, which is completely different from shedding physique fats. As soon as you come to your regular life-style, it’s possible you’ll regain a few of the weight you misplaced through the potato food plan.

Is The Potato Weight-reduction plan a Wholesome Selection for You?

The potato food plan is most just like The Starch Resolution, however it’s considerably extra restrictive. Whereas The Starch Resolution encourages a starch-based food plan that features potatoes, the potato food plan advocates for a potato-only food plan. Nevertheless, the potato food plan is designed to be a short-term speedy weight reduction answer, and diets like The Starch Resolution could be adopted long-term as they’re extra balanced and sustainable.

In comparison with the 2020-2025 USDA Dietary Pointers for Individuals, the potato food plan doesn’t meet the dietary suggestions. The rules listing potatoes as a wholesome supply of starchy greens, although it encourages a food plan stuffed with meals from the primary meals teams and quite a lot of them. Listed below are a number of ways in which the potato food plan doesn’t meet the USDA suggestions.

Not Nutritionally Balanced

Within the 2020-2025 USDA Dietary Pointers for Individuals, fiber is listed as a trigger for concern attributable to underconsumption. Put merely, Individuals don’t get sufficient fiber of their food plan. 

The potato food plan is a fiber-rich food plan. It’s also recognized for its digestive advantages. The USDA recommends between 28 and 34 grams of fiber per day for adults.

Nevertheless, the potato food plan could lack different vitamins because it doesn’t include meals from the assorted meals teams. The suggestions for every day protein consumption are between 46 and 56 grams for adults. This can be doable on the potato food plan when you eat an especially massive quantity of potatoes, however some individuals could not get sufficient protein on the potato food plan.

Very Low in Sodium

Along with being low in fats, the potato food plan is low in sodium. Whereas salt is allowed on the potato food plan, it isn’t inspired. Since potatoes are naturally low in sodium and customers could add little to no salt for style, the potato food plan may be very low in sodium.

The USDA recommends roughly 2,300mg of sodium per day. With out added salt, sodium consumption on the potato food plan is considerably lower than this quantity. Whereas extreme sodium could be detrimental to optimum well being, some sodium is an important nutrient required to advertise fluid steadiness and muscle and nerve operate.

Lacks Selection

One space of concern on the potato food plan is the dearth of selection. The USDA separates meals into six important teams: greens, fruits, grains, dairy, protein meals, and oils. Potatoes, the primary meals on the potato food plan, solely account for a kind of meals teams: greens. Individuals following the potato food plan are lacking 5 of the six really helpful meals teams.

Variable in Energy

There’s a false impression that as a way to drop pounds, it’s essential to scale back your calorie consumption to 1,200 energy per day. That is a lot decrease than the USDA suggestions for 1,600-2,000 energy every day for grownup girls and a pair of,000-2,400 energy every day for grownup males. 

There is no such thing as a set calorie requirement on the potato food plan. Followers are inspired to eat till they’re full, so they might eat roughly than really helpful.

Although mono diets, such because the potato food plan, could lead to short-term weight reduction, this food plan will not be sustainable and will lead to dietary deficiencies.

Well being Advantages

The potato food plan could lead to short-term weight reduction and scale back your fats and sodium consumption; nevertheless, there are only a few well being advantages related to this food plan. Usually, potatoes are a nutritious meals, however they need to be thought-about as a part of a assorted food plan wealthy in fruits, different greens, complete grains, proteins, and wholesome fat.

Well being Dangers

Discourages Wholesome Consuming Habits

As famous, the potato food plan will not be nutritionally balanced and discourages wholesome consuming habits. A nutrient-dense food plan is wealthy in quite a lot of meals, whereas the potato food plan usually permits solely potatoes. Consuming just one meals could promote disordered consuming habits.

Excessive in Complicated Carbohydrates

Individuals who have sure medical circumstances or dietary necessities must also converse with a physician earlier than beginning this food plan. Although potatoes are a wealthy supply of advanced carbohydrates, that are related to many well being advantages, the potato food plan continues to be a carb-heavy food plan. Individuals who comply with low-carb diets for medical causes, equivalent to diabetes, ought to search the recommendation of a well being skilled earlier than committing to this food plan.

Not Acceptable for These with Potato Allergy symptoms

Potato allergy symptoms are uncommon and potatoes are seldom uncovered to dietary allergens, so individuals with allergy symptoms ought to be capable of comply with this food plan with out experiencing allergic reactions. Nevertheless, in case you are involved about dietary allergens related to a potato-heavy food plan, it is best to seek the advice of with a well being care skilled.

There are numerous variations of the potato on the market, which can make it complicated to know which is able to work finest for you. Some fad diets are simply that—fads that aren’t sustainable. Nevertheless, related diets could also be simpler to include into your life-style long-term.

The Starch Resolution

If you happen to like potatoes however don’t need them to make up the majority of your food plan, it’s possible you’ll be excited about The Starch Resolution. It was created by a plant-based physician who believes that scientific proof helps a starch-based food plan for people. Just like the potato food plan, followers eat loads of starchy meals, however non-starchy meals are allowed. This food plan can also be low-fat and plant-based.

The Mono Weight-reduction plan

Just like the plant-based food plan, the potato food plan can also be an instance of a mono food plan. That is while you eat nothing however one sort of meals for a short-term interval. Coincidentally, the founder selected potatoes for his 2-week dash. This will result in dietary deficiencies and isn’t really helpful.

Plant-Based mostly Weight-reduction plan

The potato food plan is an instance of a plant-based food plan, however it isn’t the perfect illustration of it since it’s so restricted in selection. A balanced plant-based food plan consists of not solely potatoes, however different plant meals like greens, fruits, nuts, seeds, grains, legumes, non-dairy milk, soy protein, and so forth. That is the muse of the vegan life-style and is appropriate to comply with long-term.

A Phrase From Verywell

Potatoes are a scrumptious and well-liked supply of resistant starch, fiber, nutritional vitamins, and minerals. Nevertheless, an excessive amount of of 1 factor can generally be a nasty factor. Consuming a wholesome balanced food plan lets you eat quite a lot of nutrient-rich meals in addition to some extra indulgent meals. Nevertheless, the potato food plan doesn’t enable for consuming sparsely. As a substitute, followers merely eat one meals—potatoes—in massive portions.

Keep in mind, following a long-term or short-term food plan is probably not mandatory for you and lots of diets on the market merely don’t work, particularly long-term. Whereas we don’t endorse fad food plan traits or unsustainable weight reduction strategies, we current the details so you may make an knowledgeable choice that works finest to your dietary wants, genetic blueprint, price range, and objectives.

In case your objective is weight reduction, do not forget that reducing weight isn’t essentially the identical as being your healthiest self, and there are numerous different methods to pursue well being. Train, sleep, and different life-style components additionally play a significant position in your total well being. The most effective food plan is at all times the one that’s balanced and matches your life-style.

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