13 Things You Didn’t Know About the Digest Diet

Updated: Mar. 31, 2022

Whether you're a newcomer to the Digest Diet or an experienced pro who's cycled through the plan several times — these tips from author Liz Vaccariello will give you insider insight into the one diet everyone is buzzing about this fall.

1. Chocolate and wine aren’t just allowed on this diet—they’re required!
The Digest Diet centers around 13 fat releasing foods based on breakthrough science, and dark chocolate and red wine are two of these proven fat releasers. MORE: See all 13 Fat Releasing Foods

2. Vegetarian? Lactose Intolerant? Gluten allergies? The diet can still work for you.
We recommend you follow the diet as closely as possible, but you can substitute certain foods. For instance, if you’re a vegetarian, you can get protein from beans, tofu, and nuts instead of meat and fish; if you can’t drink milk you can swap in lactose-free milk. Most of the meals on the diet (and most of the fat releasing foods) are already gluten free.

3. You won’t have cravings.
From day one of the 21-day Digest Diet plan, staffer Dawn Vezirian says she realized she wasn’t craving sweets to soothe stress. “A chemical change happened. I look at cookies, and I just don’t care,” she said. Gone, too, is the feeling she describes as being on a roller coaster, shifting from “I’m so stuffed I can’t move” to “I’m starved, I need to eat now.” MORE: How Dawn Kicked Her Candy Habit

MORE: Buy the Digest Diet book at digestdiet.com

4. The diet isn’t just for women.
College students looking to get rid of the Freshman 15 and dads trying to get in shape for their daughter’s wedding have tried and succeeded with the Digest Diet.

5. Losing weight is just the beginning.
You can expect so much more on the Digest Diet plan: skyrocketing energy levels, improved blood pressure and cholesterol numbers, decreased joint pain, and so much more.

6. You’ll also see sneaky signs of weight loss right away.
In the first few days, if the scale doesn’t budge, try to focus on what is changing, whether that’s a slimmer face, looser fitting clothes, compliments from friends and family members, and higher energy levels. Stick with it and the weight loss will follow.

MORE: Buy the Digest Diet book at digestdiet.com

7. Hello, birthday parties: Being social won’t derail your success.
You should never feel like you have to miss any sort of celebration or special outing because you’re on a diet. Follow the principles when ordering at a restaurant, or at a get-together, and you should be just fine.

8. Your new workout is just 12 minutes long. (Or, just 12 minutes short!)
For the Digest Diet, the workout component is based on principles of HIIT, or high intensity interval training. This method has you alternating between burst of vigorous activity and cool-down time to shock your body into weight loss.
MORE: 1-Minute, Fat Releasing Workouts that Work

9. It’s safe for the whole family.
Because the Digest Diet only uses wholesome, fresh foods that you probably already have in your grocery cart, you should feel safe and confident feeding the recipes to your whole family. As many parents put it, “My kids didn’t even know we were feeding them diet food.” MORE: “My Family lost 111 pounds on the Digest Diet!”

10. Over 4,000 Digest Diet fans have your back.
Get answers to your questions from experts, editors, and others who are following the plan, plus find daily motivation and inspiration at any time. MORE: Join the community today free, at facebook.com/digestdiet

11. Need extra motivation? Watch bloggers in action.
These inspiring blogs will have you raring to go!

12. You can get featured in the magazine! How’s that for motivation?
Our editors are always on the lookout for great Digest Diet success stories, whether that means on the website, in the magazine or in special media appearances. Have a great story to share? Email [email protected].

13. It’s not a diet. It’s a lifestyle plan.
Like one of our star users, try repeating the mantra “I can commit to anything for 21 days.” But after that, you’ll be surprised that you feel so healthy and energized that this will be a plan you want to adapt for life. MORE: See the amazing journey of Adrienne Farr, who lost over 60 pounds on the Digest Diet

Reader's Digest
Originally Published in Reader's Digest