Different Types of Diets to Lose Weight: 144 Kinds of Plans Listed

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The problem with having so many different diets is that it’s really hard to know which ones are healthy, which ones are good for weight loss, and which types of diets are best-suited to your needs.

It gets worse when you have social media rife with “influencers” promoting diet types that aren’t actually healthy.

Sure, you’ll lose weight on most diets, mainly because they heavily restrict your calories.

But these aren’t sustainable. So, what’s the answer?

I encourage you to check out all the diets below (yes, it’ll take you a while), but find one that directly aligns to your needs.

Hint: a type of mediterranean diet is an excellent choice! 

How many types of diets are there?

Being able to pin an exact number to address the question of, “how many diets are there?” is tricky business.

This is mainly due to there being high-level types of diets, which the specific diets I’ve detailed below fall under.

So, what types of diets are there? This is the high-level list:

  • Omnivore: A diet containing all foods. Meat, vegetables, concrete, detergent… the lot!
  • Vegetarian: Doesn’t contain meat but does contain animal-based products, such as milk and eggs.
  • Vegan: Excludes all animal-related foods, including gelatin.
  • Flexitarian: Mainly vegetarian in nature but is more flexible on when and when not to eat meat. Usually once or twice a week.
  • Pescitarian: A diet that excludes meat but includes fish and seafood.

Sure, there are more than this, and there are sub-categories of these, but you’d end up with an endless choice of food diets.

Now let’s shift into the next level of types of diets under this core group:

What are the different types of diet plans?

Different types of diets

You can use all of the below types of diet for weight loss since weight loss simply occurs from maintaining a calorie deficit over time.

However, that doesn’t make them different types of diets that you should investigate further (fad diets, for example!)

Check out this comprehensive list of the different diet plans around today, and then jump further down to see an expansion on each of the individual diets:

Low-carb diet

  • 17-day Diet
  • Atkins
  • Banting Diet – Real Meal Revolution
  • Bulletproof Diet
  • Carb cycling
  • Clear liquid diet
  • Drinking Man’s Diet
  • Dukan Diet
  • Eat. Nourish. Glow
  • Eco-Atkins
  • Hamptons Diet
  • K-E Diet
  • Kimkins
  • Paleo
  • Pioppi Diet
  • Protein Power
  • Protein-sparing modified
  • Rosedale Diet
  • Salisbury Diet
  • Scarsdale Medical Diet
  • South Beach Diet
  • Stillman Diet
  • Sugar Busters
  • The 4-Hour Body
  • The Dubrow Diet
  • The Wild Diet

Low-calorie diet

  • 5:2 Diet
  • Body For Life
  • Breatharian/Inedia
  • Cookie Diet
  • Clear liquid diet
  • Full liquid diet
  • Juice fasting
  • K-E Diet
  • Nutrisystem Diet
  • Protein-sparing modified
  • Scarsdale Medical Diet
  • SlimFast
  • The 1:1 Diet
  • Tongue Patch Diet
  • Weight Watchers

Low-fat diet

  • F2 Diet
  • Body for Life
  • Clear liquid diet
  • Ornish Diet
  • Pritikin Diet
  • Protein-sparing modified
  • Rice Diet
  • Stillman Diet
  • The Starch Solution

High-fat diets

  • Atkins
  • Banting Diet – Real Meal Revolution
  • Eco-Atkins
  • Mediterranean diet
  • Rosedale Diet
  • South Beach Diet
  • The Wild Diet

High-fiber diets

  • F2 Diet
  • Pritikin Diet
  • Rice Diet
  • The Starch Solution

High-protein diets

  • Eco-Akins
  • Protein-sparing modified
  • Salisbury Diet
  • Scarsdale Medical Diet
  • South Beach Diet
  • Stillman Diet
  • The Wild Diet

Elimination diets

Most diets can be elimination diets since they restrict you on certain food groups at one stage or another.

However, the elimination types of diets list below are ones that deliberately encourage a heavy reduction in certain foods:

  • Banting Diet – Real Meal Revolution
  • Clear liquid diet
  • Full liquid
  • Halal
  • Hallelujah Diet
  • K-E Diet
  • Mediterranean diet
  • Ornish Diet
  • Pritikin Diet
  • Rice Diet
  • The Starch Solution
  • Whole30
  • Zone Diet

Liquid diets

  • Clear liquid diet
  • Full liquid diet
  • K-E diet
  • SlimFast
  • The 1:1 Diet

Keto diets

  • Bulletproof Diet
  • Keto 2.0
  • Lazy Keto
  • The Keto Diet

Plant-based diets

  • Eco-Atkins
  • Hallelujah Diet
  • Ornish Diet
  • The Starch Solution

Fasting diets

  • 16:8 diet
  • 4:3 diet
  • 5:2 diet
  • Breatharian/Inedia diet
  • Buddhist diet
  • Bulletproof intermittent fasting
  • Clear liquid diet
  • Eat Stop Eat
  • Juice fasting
  • OMAD (one meal a day)
  • Protein-sparing modified
  • The Dubrow Diet
  • The Warrior Diet

Belief diets

  • Ahimsa
  • Bible Diet
  • Breatharian/Inedia
  • Buddhist Diet
  • Halal
  • Hallelujah Diet
  • Hinduism
  • Ital
  • Jainism
  • Kosher
  • Seventh-Day Adventist
  • World of Wisdom

Detox diets

  • Activated charcoal diet
  • Clean9 (Forever Living)
  • Clean 7 (Clean Program)
  • Clean 21 (Clean Program)
  • Fat Flush Plan
  • Juice fasting
  • Lemon detox diet
  • Master Cleanse
  • Martha’s Vineyard
  • Wheatgrass diet

Medical diets

  • Blood Type Diet
  • Cardiac
  • Casein-free
  • Clear liquid diet
  • DASH Diet
  • Diabetic
  • Elemental
  • Elimination
  • Full liquid diet
  • Dukan
  • Gluten-free
  • HCG
  • High fiber diet
  • Juice Diet
  • Ketogenic
  • Kidney/renal
  • Lactose-free
  • Liquid
  • Low cholesterol
  • Low FODMAP
  • Low protein
  • Low sodium
  • Macrobiotic
  • Master Cleanse (Lemonade Diet)
  • Mechanical soft
  • Pureed diet
  • Raw food diet
  • Restricted
  • Sacred Heart
  • Saxenda
  • Scarsdale Diet
  • SCD (specific carb diet)
  • Short-term liquid diet
  • Smoothie Diet
  • Soft
  • Soft transitional diet
  • South Beach Diet
  • Water diet

Crash/Fad diets

  • Alkaline diet
  • Atkins
  • Apple Cider Vinegar Diet
  • Baby Food Diet
  • Beverly Hills Diet
  • Blood type diet
  • Bulletproof
  • Cabbage Soup Diet
  • Carnivore diet
  • Clean eating
  • Cookie diet
  • Cotton ball diet
  • Drinking Man’s Diet
  • Dukan
  • Egg & whine diet
  • Five Bite Diet
  • Fit for life diet
  • Fruitarianism
  • Gluten-free diet
  • Grapefruit Diet
  • Hamptons Diet
  • Hard Boiled Egg Diet
  • Hollywood Cookie Diet
  • Immune power diet
  • K-E Diet
  • Keto
  • Lamb chop and pineapple
  • Macrobiotics
  • Morning banana
  • Monotrophic Diet
  • Mucusless diet
  • Paleolithic
  • Pegan
  • Pioppi Diet
  • Protein Power
  • Rhubarb
  • Rosedale Diet
  • Salisbury Diet
  • Scarsdale Medical Diet
  • Slimming World
  • Stillman Diet
  • Soup Diet
  • South Beach Diet
  • Subway Diet
  • Sugar Busters
  • Superfood
  • The 4-Hour Body
  • Tongue Patch Diet
  • Werewolf diet
  • Whole30
  • Zone Diet

Phew! That’s a whole lotta diets! Well done on making it this far 🙂

Now check out these diets in more detail below…

What are the different types of diets to lose weight? Here’s our complete list of diets and descriptions

A list of diets for weight loss containing just the names of diets is useless unless you know more about them and how they work (and whether they’re legit!).

The below list of diets is simply in alphabetical order for ease:

16:8 Diet

The 16:8 intermittent fasting diet has you eating foods/drinks containing calories during an 8-hour window and fasting for the remaining 16 hours.

It’s common for 16:8 intermittent fasters to use midday to 8pm as their eating window. That way, there’s a large chunk of time overnight for the fast, and they skip breakfast. An alternative is to eat between 9am and 5pm.

Since fasting can lead to hunger cravings, your diet should contain nutritious whole foods that are high in fiber.

Type(s):

  • Fasting

17-Day Diet

Released in 2010, the 17-Day Diet is a book released by Michael Moreno, MD. He later went on to release an updated, “Breakthrough” edition in 2013.

It’s a restrictive, low-carb diet designed to reduce your calorie intake early in the program to achieve weight loss, becoming less restrictive over time.

The foods eliminated are:

  • Most dairy products
  • Fruit
  • Sugar
  • Grain-based foods

Results are varied, as is the case with all these types of diets. Some will most definitely lose weight and keep it off. Others have found the diet to be too restrictive, lost weight, but then put it all back on.

Type(s):

  • Low-carb

4:3 Diet

On the 4:3 fasting diet, the idea is that you eat normally for 4 consecutive days and then drop down to 500 calories for the next 3 days.

There aren’t any eliminated foods on the 4:3 diet, making the focus of this diet simply weight loss rather than anything to do with education on what a healthy diet is.

Even so, it’s common for those on such a fasting diet to drink high amounts of water but also tea and coffee to keep them energized (thanks to the caffeine content).

Type(s):

  • Fasting
  • Low-calorie

5:2 Diet

There’s no official 5:2 diet since it’s more of a concept that you eat for 5 days and then fast for 2 days, making it a fasting diet. However, there are some high-quality books that you can follow.

On the two fasting days, calories are considerably reduced to between 500 and 600 but those fasting days can’t be next to each other.

For the other 5 days, the idea is that you eat “normally”, although the idea here isn’t that you eat whatever floats your boat. You should eat sensibly and as healthily as possible. Think whole foods and not processed foods.

Type(s):

  • Fasting
  • Low-calorie

Ahimsa diet

Any diet based on Ahimsa is based on the beliefs surrounding Buddhism, Hinduism and Jainism. Although these religious beliefs all have their own slant on what an Ahimsa diet should look like, the principle is based on not harming living things.

And so, in terms of a diet, most are vegetarian or totally plant-based. The Ahimsa beliefs also extend to the harming of insects, microbes and plants; however, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t eat fruit and vegetables.

In addition, a Jainist angle on this diet is that you shouldn’t eat after dark.

Type(s):

  • Belief
  • Plant-based

Atkins Diet

The Atkins Diet is now an age-old low-carb diet that attracted lots of controversy when it was first released.

Its focus is the elimination of high-starch vegetables and high-sugar fruits so that the body turns to burning your stored fat for energy. On it, you can consume as much protein and fat as you like.

In my experience, a “healthy” diet should focus on the micronutrients in foods, i.e. vitamins, minerals and fiber. As such, The Atkins Diet doesn’t promote health but pure weight loss.

Type(s):

  • High-fat
  • Low-carb

Banting Diet 2.0 – Real Meal Revolution Diet

Originally founded by William Banting in 1862 (after being prescribed the diet by Dr. William Harvey), it’s Tim Noakes who has made the modern Banting Diet 2.0 popular with his Real Meal Revolution version.

It’s a high-fat and low-carb diet, with a macronutrient structure similar to that of a keto diet:

  • Protein: 10 to 35%
  • Fat: 65 to 90%
  • Carbs: 5 to 10%

With such a low carb intake, you’d class this as an elimination diet, which, unfortunately also eliminates healthy foods such as whole grains, fruit and vegetables.

However, the intention here is to reverse type 2 diabetes; hence, the low carb intake.

For this diet to work, there are 4 phases that follow a structured food list and meal plans to aid in your weight loss journey:

  1. Observation
  2. Restoration
  3. Transformation
  4. Preservation

Type(s):

  • Elimination
  • High-fat
  • Low-carb

Bible Diet/Edenic Diet

The concept of any Bible diet (also known as an “Edenic diet”) is based on foods that are specifically mentioned in the Bible.

Naturally, this evolves through the different Bible Books, but we can use Genesis as a good starting point. In it, God specifically mentions foods that he gave to Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden:

  • Fruits
  • Nuts
  • Grains
  • Legumes
  • Seeds

Whether you’re religious or not, there’s a lot of mindfulness and a belief of not harming others to take from a Bible diet.

From the above list, it may seem that a Bible diet is plant-based, however there’s mention of Jesus, and other religious figures, eating meat.

Type(s):

  • Belief

Body for Life

Body for Life takes more of a holistic approach to dieting in that there’s also a focus on exercise, increasing energy and creating more time during the 12-week program.

While it’s marketed as a simple 12-week process, there are quite a few elements you need to follow. For example, you’re heavily restricted in terms of the amount of fat you can consume, with your diet split as follows while reducing your calorie intake:

  • Carbs: 50%
  • Protein: 40%
  • Fat: 10%

Of those carbs, at least 2 portions (which is pretty low) need to be from vegetables each day, and you’ll need to throw back 10 glasses of water per day.

In terms of exercise, you’ll need to do 20 minutes of HIIT 3 for 3 days and 45 minutes of weight training for 3 days.

Type(s):

  • Low-fat

Breatharian/Inedia

A breatharian diet isn’t a specific program but a belief that we don’t need food to survive but only need the oxygen we breathe and energy from the universe.

It’s largely a Hindu belief, based on prana, which is the vital life force in the religion but also translates to “breath”. The main source of prana is thought to be sunlight. 

I mean… some things just make the mind boggle. Clearly, some people haven’t heard of dehydration or starvation.

Type(s):

  • Belief
  • Fasting
  • Low-calorie

Buddhist Diet

Although, generally, a Buddhist diet will follow a vegetarian angle, we can’t assume that all Buddhists do the same.

However, the Buddhist “way” is that you shouldn’t kill an animal (as well as people!), but some will eat meat if the animal wasn’t specifically killed for them. Some Buddhists will still eat meat products, such as dairy, but abstain from eating eggs and meats.

Alcohol and strong-smelling plants are also eliminated since they can cloud the mind and alter sexual desire, which is against Buddhist teachings.

Fasting is also a factor in a Buddhist diet, with the fast taking place between midday and the following dawn to exercise self-control.

Type(s):

  • Belief
  • Fasting
  • Vegetarian (mainly)

Bulletproof Diet

The Bulletproof Diet centers around its flagship Bulletproof Coffee, but the main focus is on a low-carb keto diet with intermittent fasting.

While many swear by the benefits of The Bulletproof Diet, I can’t help but feel it promotes the elimination of perfectly healthy foods just to lose weight. Even so, there are plenty of people that have had tremendous weight-loss-success through the program.

The diet aside, Bulletproof Coffee is a massive favorite and is worth checking out.

Type(s):

  • Low-carb
  • Keto
  • Fasting

Carb cycling diet

The essence of a carb cycling diet is to support an individual’s needs and goals, with the cycle length varying from daily to weekly to monthly.

Days when carb intake is high tends to be in line with exercise to provide enough fast-access energy (carbs) to support the workout.

When not working out, the carbs are “cycled out”, dropping to either a moderate carb intake day or low intake day.

Type(s):

  • Low-carb

Clear liquid diet

There’s no specific clear liquid diet for you to follow. Following such a diet is usually at the request of your doctor before a medical procedure.

If you’re on a clear liquid diet, you usually can only consume liquids that are clear, but see-through liquids are also allowed.

The concept here is to stay hydrated while consuming electrolytes but to avoid undigested foods in your intestinal tract that can affect scans, operations and procedures.

The most common liquids involved are water, plain gelatin and broths, although foods can be consumed if they form a liquid at room temperature.

Type(s):

  • Fasting
  • Liquid

Cookie Diet

“Eat cookies and lose weight.” It sounds delicious, but the Cookie Diet is probably one of the worst diets from a health point of view that I’ve seen.

And yes, it heavily relies on consuming cookies! Founded by Dr. Sanford Siegal, he promotes that you eat 9 of his cookies per day, which replace breakfast, lunch and your snacks for the day. For the last meal of the day, it should be a meat and vegetable meal of around 500 to 700 calories.

Since each cookie is around 55 calories (depending on the flavour), this is a low-calorie diet of approximately 1095 calories per day. So, weight loss is likely but it isn’t sustainable, especially since the diet doesn’t teach you a healthy relationship with food.

Type(s):

  • Low-calorie

Drinking Man’s Diet

Before you head down to your local 7-Eleven to stock up on beer, think again…

Yep, the Drinking Man’s Diet does revolve around including alcohol in your diet, but that doesn’t make it a good idea!

Released in 1962, it’s the godfather of low-carb diets, but it’s very much a fad, recommending drinking low-carb alcoholic drinks (lite beers and cocktails) for lunch.

But the actual focus was limiting the amount of carbs from foods AND alcohol, with the cap at 60 grams of carbohydrates per day.

Type(s):

  • Low-carb
  • Fad

Dukan Diet

The Dukan Diet was created in 2000 by Pierre Dukan, a general physician from France, who is on a mission to fight obesity.

The diet comprises of 4 different phrases:

  • Attack Phase: Contains protein-only foods. Rapid weight loss
  • Cruise Phase: Reintroduces carbs but only consumed with protein. Gradual weight loss
  • Consolidation Phase: Reintroduces starchy veggies. Current weight loss is maintained
  • Stabilization Phase: A support phrase of coaching to keep the weight lost off

Although it sounds good on paper, the diet eliminates so many healthy foods, but clients have seen rapid weight loss.

Type(s):

  • Low-carb

Eat. Nourish. Glow

Written by Amelia Freer, “Eat. Nourish. Glow” shows you the simple changes she made in her life to counter fatigue, skin problems, and excess weight.

As a nutritional therapist, Amelia has worked with celebs such as Boy George and Sam Smith to enhance their lives through diet.

Her method contains 10 steps to achieve the following:

  • Wean gluten from your diet
  • Eliminate sugar and dairy
  • Reduce snacking cravings
  • Lower alcohol & caffeine consumption
  • Increase your intake of nutrient-rich foods

Type(s):

  • Low-carb

Eat Stop Eat

Founded by Brad Pilon, Eat Stop Eat is a fasting diet that has you eating normally for 5 days of the week but having 2 non-consecutive days for fasting.

These 2 days of fasting are to be for 24 hours (although he says you can also target 20 hours if you need to), which is why they need to be spaced within the 5 normal-eating days.

There’s no restriction on this diet, although there is an emphasis on eating healthily and ensuring you’re consistently hydrated. All liquids can be consumed during fasting days as long as they don’t contain calories.

While there’s no monitoring of calories during the regular 5 days, he advises that you cut your calorie intake by 10% if you find you’re putting on weight between the fasts.

Type(s):

  • Fasting

Eco-Atkins

The Aco-Atkins diet is essentially a carbon copy of the OG Atkins diet but for vegetarians and vegans.

The main difference is that vegetable protein replaces the high-fat animal protein that we’re accustomed to with the Atkins diet. However, researchers wanted to see if an improvement could be made on the original to reduce “bad” cholesterol (LDL).

In terms of macros and foods, the Eco-Atkins diet is split as follows:

  • Protein: 31% from beans, nuts, soy burgers, tofu, and more.
  • Carbs: 26% from whole grains, fruit and low-starch, viscous vegetables.
  • Fat: 43% from “good” fats, such as soy, olive oil, nuts and avocados

In addition to the above food guidance, followers are encouraged to take daily multivitamin and fish oil supplements.

Type(s):

  • High-fat
  • High-protein
  • Low-carb

F2 Diet

The F2 Diet is the upgraded version of the high-fiber F-Plan Diet, which was founded by Audrey Eyton in the 1980s. In it, you’re given lots of help with recipes and meal plans to assist you through the journey.

It’s a high-fiber diet that focuses on you burning body fat and consuming lots of foods with vitamins and minerals. The expected results aren’t just weight loss but healthy skin, teeth and hair.

One of the good things about the F2 is that you’re unlikely to feel hungry, even on a lower calorie diet than you’re used to due to the high fiber content. Estimated daily calorie intake is around 1,500, so it isn’t a low-calorie diet, either.

Type(s):

  • Low-fat
  • High-fiber

Full liquid diet

A full liquid diet is a step up from the clear liquid diet. It serves a similar function but contains foods in the form of smoothies or shakes, and they don’t have to be clear.

Again, the main use of this diet is for medical reasons; however, that doesn’t stop some full liquid diet books from existing. Common medical situations when this type of diet is effective are:

  • Broken jaw/teeth
  • Post weight-loss surgery
  • Gastrointestinal surgery
  • Recovering from pancreatitis

Type(s):

  • Elimination
  • Liquid
  • Low-calorie

Halal diet

The central focus of a Halal diet and recipes is around the Islamic laws from the Quran around how livestock is treated prior to being eaten.

This includes how they’re raised, slaughtered and then prepared. The animal has to be classed as being healthy at the time of being killed, which is carried out by cutting the jugular.

For a food to be classed as Halal, it needs to be labeled as such, and no Halal food can contain alcohol or blood, as well as these meats:

  • Carnivorous animals
  • Reptiles
  • Pork
  • Birds of prey

Type(s):

  • Belief
  • Elimination

Hallelujah Diet

Similar to the Bible Diet, the Hallelujah Diet is based on a passage in the Bible, Genesis 1:29. The English Standard Version of this states:

“And God said, ‘Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit. You shall have them for food.’”

Pastor George M. Malkmus, founder of the Hallelujah Diet, took from this that we should only consume raw, plant-based food, because that’s what God intended.

On this diet, you go through 4 different phases, which relies on supplements:

  1. Consuming raw nuts, seeds, fruit and veg.
  2. Eliminate toxic foods, such as refined carbs, salt, sugar, dairy and meat.
  3. Using the diet’s BarleyMax supplement, which is a juicing supplement
  4. Increasing supplement consumption to avoid deficiencies, again using ones supplied by the program.

Type(s):

  • Belief
  • Elimination

Hamptons Diet

The tagline for the Hamptons Diet is “lose weight quickly & safely” and was founded by Dr. Fred Pescatore.

Being a low-carb diet, the aim is to balance carbs with protein and only consume foods with a low glycaemic index. This is achieved by his recipes revolving around macadamia nut oil and other monounsaturated-rich foods.

However, he also promotes high-saturated fats but advises you to restrict carbs based on the amount of weight you’re aiming to lose.

Type(s):

  • Low-carb

Hinduism diet

Diets followed by Hindus are based on their religious beliefs, rather than any official Hindu diet. Hindus will follow the guidance given to them in the Quran. However, that doesn’t mean that all Hindus will follow the same do’s and don’ts.

For example, some are strict vegetarians, some are lacto-vegetarians (excluding eggs, seafood, poultry and meat), and some will eat meat only if it’s hunted locally.

What all Hindus do agree on, however, is that the food they eat either balances the core elements of water, fire, earth and air, or it imbalances them.

Type(s):

  • Elimination

Juice fasting

Juice fasting is a pretty generic fasting method, and while there are juice fasting books to follow, it’s a pretty simple concept.

Essentially, you juice raw fruit and vegetables to create juice drinks instead of regular meals. There’s no specific calorie target on juice fasting, and there aren’t any specific fasting periods.

It’s more of a low-calorie concept whereby you replace each meal with one glass of juice, and they typically have a duration of 1 to 10 days.

Type(s):

  • Fasting
  • Low-calorie

K-E Diet

The K-E Diet is a fad, no-carb diet whereby you feed a tube down your throat, through which a proprietary blend of diet powder mixed with water is fed.

Through the powder, you only get around 800 calories per day, which is a drastically low calorie intake. While the blend is made up of fats, micronutrients and lean protein, this doesn’t make up for the low amount of energy you’re feeding your body.

While those on this diet need supervision from a doctor to insert the tube, I’d worry if any qualified doctor is promoting this dangerous, fad diet.

Type(s):

  • Low-carb
  • Low-calorie
  • Elimination
  • Fad

Keto 2.0

Keto 2.0 is thought to be an updated version of the original keto way of eating, which is a diet with a high red meat element. Studies show that large consumption of red meat can have significant negative side effects.

The difference here is that more carbs are consumed on 2.0 and there’s a push towards plant-based fats. The result is a macro balance of while remaining at a daily calorie intake of 1,600:

  • Fat: 50%
  • Protein: 30%
  • Carb: 20%

Type(s):

  • High-fat
  • Low-carb

Keto diet

The original keto diet is a very low-carb and high-fat diet, with the intention of putting your body into ketosis, which is a metabolic state.

When in ketosis, your body basically burns fat for energy, and so the idea here is you lower your body fat % and, therefore, lose weight.

There are a few different variations of this original keto diet:

  • Standard: 10% carbs, 70% fat, 20% protein.
  • Cyclical: A 5:2 cycle of 5x keto days and then 2x high-carb refeeds.
  • Targeted: Increasing carbs around your workouts.
  • High-protein: 5% carbs, 60% fat, 35% protein.

Type(s):

  • High-fat
  • Low-carb

Kimkins Diet

The Kimkins Diet is no longer available on the market, and for good reason!

While it included healthy lean proteins, it heavily encouraged an extremely low daily calorie intake and eliminated most carbohydrates and fruits, many of which are loaded with essential vitamins and minerals.

Life is much better without the Kimkins Diet!

Type(s):

  • Low-carb
  • Low-calorie

Lazy Keto

Rather than focusing on low carbs and high fat as is with the traditional keto diet, lazy keto is just focused on limiting your carb intake.

It’s a better option for those who don’t want to constantly monitor their calories and macro split. Hence, the “lazy” label. You also don’t need to include a high fat content on the lazy keto, and so your protein intake can be higher than if you were on the original keto diet.

Focus on keeping carbs low and the rest will follow is the lazy way.

Type(s):

  • Low-carb
  • High-fat

Mediterranean diet

A Mediterranean diet is more of a way of life and a diet choice rather than a specific diet you can follow; however, there are endless Mediterranean cookbooks you can choose from.

Of all the different diets to lose weight, a type of Mediterranean diet gets my choice from a pure health perspective.

This is mainly due to the complete elimination of processed food. Nothing you’ll eat is found in packaging with a huge list of ingredients. Instead, the focus is on foods such as:

  • Oily omega-3 fish (salmon, sardines)
  • Healthy oils (extra-virgin olive oil)
  • Olives
  • Lean protein (grilled chicken, for example)
  • Greek-style yoghurt
  • Fruit and veg
  • Whole grains
  • Oh, and red wine! (1 glass per day)

One of the other benefits of a Mediterranean diet is that you can make it vegan or vegetarian and still keep it healthy.

Type(s):

  • Elimination
  • High-fat

Nutrisystem Diet

Nutrisystem has been around since the 1970s and promotes eating six meals per day but by reducing the amount of calories you consume.

When you join the 4-week programme,the company provides you with your meals and snacks to avoid the complexity of meal planning.

The meals are low-carb and low-calorie, containing a blend of fats, protein and fiber, with a wide range of foods on offer. I’ve tried food from the breakfast bundle before from a friend, and it’s not bad!

Type(s):

  • Low-carb
  • Low-calorie

OMAD (one meal a day)

As with most fasting types of diets, an OMAD (one meal a day) diet has no official guidance, but there are plenty of OMAD books for you to check out.

OMAD differs from other intermittent fasting diets since you eat one meal per day and then fast for 23 hours. This heavily forces your body to burn stored fat during your fasting.

There’s zero restriction on an OMAD diet, and most folks would eat at dinnertime (likely due to the idea of sitting down to eat dinner with family).

While you have complete dietary freedom, it’s not advisable to consume 2,000+ calories of whatever the hell you like and then eat nothing for 23 hours.

OMAD recipe books can give you much better guidance.

Type(s):

  • Fasting

Ornish Diet

Founded by Dean Ornish, M.D., the Ornish Diet is all about losing weight, improving your health and facilitating you to enjoy life.

The claims are that it’s scientifically proven to reverse severe lifestyle diseases, including heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

The diet focuses on the belief that there’s no “bad” food, but some are much healthier than others, and so the diet revolves around:

  • Fruit and vegetables
  • Natural egg whites
  • Omega 3 fats
  • Whole grains
  • Legumes
  • No-fat dairy
  • Soy
  • Legumes

As such, it’s a largely plant-based, low-fat diet with a huge following and eliminates sugar and adding salt to cooking.

Type(s):

  • Low-fat
  • Elimination
  • Plant-based

Paleo Diet

The Paleo Diet® was created by Dr. Loren Cordain through extensive research and is now one of the most-followed diets around.

It takes an evolutionary approach to a healthy diet, encouraging you to focus on the foods we, as humans, have evolved on.

As such, it revolved around the following foods:

  • Natural meats
  • Seafood
  • Fruits
  • Vegetables
  • Nuts
  • Seeds

In addition, legumes, dairy and gains are excluded, but the diet is good to be followed 85% of the time. While it isn’t a pure low-carb diet, it can be classed as such since the foods excluded are carbohydrates.

Type(s):

  • Low-carb

Pioppi Diet

Founders Dr. Aseem Malhotra and Donal O’Neill have seemingly leveled up the Mediterranean diet trend with the Pioppi Diet.

It’s named as such based on the population of Pioppi, Italy. The founders studied their healthy habits and derived this low-carb, high-fat diet.

Foods included in this diet are:

  • Oily fish: Such as salmon and sardines. 3x per week
  • Eggs: 10x per week
  • Fruit and veg: 5-7 portions per day
  • Olive oil: 2-4 tbsp per day

Where the Pioppi Diet perhaps stands out is that it’s also a lifestyle guide, too, with the promotion of:

  • Exercise: HIIT workouts. A 30-minute brisk walk each day. Getting up from your desk every 45 minutes
  • Relaxation: Daily breathing and meditation work
  • Sleep: At least 7 hours each night
  • Fasting: For 24 hours once per week

Type(s):

  • Low-carb

Pritikin Diet

Self-labelled as the “healthiest diet on earth”, the Pritikin Diet promotes healthy weight loss through a diet and exercise while preventing diseases such as heart disease, hypertension and diabetes.

It’s a low-fat and high-fiber diet that eliminates the following foods:

  • Organ and processed meats
  • High-cholesterol foods
  • Vegetable oils
  • High saturated fat foods

And the focus is on the following foods:

  • Fruit and vegetables (including starchy veggies)
  • Lean protein
  • Fish
  • Whole grains
  • Legumes
  • Calcium-rich foods (as long as they’re lean)

Type(s):

  • High-fiber
  • Low-fat
  • Elimination

Protein Power

Protein Power is yet another diet plan to jump on the low-carb, high-protein bandwagon. 

The founders, Drs. Michael and Mary Dan Eades, use the basis of by reducing your carb intake you reduce the amount of insulin your body produces. It then produces more glucagon, which aids in using stored fat for energy through lipolysis.

Foods allowed on this diet are:

  • Protein: Red meat, eggs, tofu, low-fat cheese, poultry, fish
  • Fiber: 25 grams per day
  • Fats: Avocado, olive oil, but oils, butter
  • Carbs (veggies): Broccoli, leafy greens, peppers, tomatoes, cucumber, celery, and more
  • Alcohol: Wine and beer is allowed but
  • Sweet treats: Artificial sweeteners and sodas in moderation

Type(s):

  • Low-carb

Protein-Sparing Modified

The protein-sparing modified fast diet is designed for the user to lose weight while maintaining muscle. This is done by it being low-calorie but with a high protein ratio to the other macros.

Protein intake is around 0.7 grams of protein per pound of body weight. Sources to go for are eggs, fish, poultry, tofu and low-fat cheese. For carbs, aim for less than 20g per day.

It consists of two phases:

  • Phase 1: Less than 800 calories per day for 6 months(!)
  • Phase 2: 6 to 8-week refeed phase adding in fats and carbs, increasing daily protein by between 7 and 14 grams a month. Aim for 45g of carbs a day for month 1, moving up to 90g per day in month 2.

Type(s):

  • Fasting
  • High-protein
  • Low-calorie
  • Low-carb
  • Low-fat

Rice Diet

Don’t be fooled into thinking you’ll only/mainly eat rice on the Rice Diet. Instead, the idea is to eliminate salt (sodium) from your diet. That includes not adding salt when cooking and also consuming low-or-no-sodium foods.

The result? Less boat and losing weight through a reduction in excess water stored in the body. 

This combines with eating foods high in fiber to keep you full and nourished through the likes of fruit and veg, beans and grains. These make up the bulk of the recommended food groups.

Like any good “diet”, the Rice Diet encourages serious lifestyle changes alongside eating more healthily, including journaling, meditation and mindfulness.

Type(s):

  • Low-fat
  • High-fiber
  • Elimination

Rosedale Diet

The Rosedale Diet is built on the belief that we can all achieve “perfect” health and harmony from our diet and that our cells don’t communicate well enough to allow us to function optimally.

Founded by Dr. Rosedale, he says that you should eat if you feel hungry, but to be aware of what you’re eating. Eating “correctly” isn’t just about monitoring calories but you should avoid foods that turn into sugar.

As such, he promotes a low-carb diet, specifically eliminating starchy carbs since they’re the ones that turn into sugar in the body.

In addition, he promotes the consumption of healthy fats (raw nuts, olives and olive oil) and to avoid vegetable oil fats.

In summary:

  • Avoid starchy carbs and sugar
  • Eat good fats (limit saturated fat for the first 3 weeks)
  • Consume the right amount of protein for your weight
  • Drink lots of water (no sodas or juices)
  • Exercise after your last meal
  • Eat when hungry
  • Eat slowly
  • Spread meals out
  • Feel good about yourself

Type(s):

  • Low-carb
  • High-fat

Salisbury Diet

The Salisbury Diet, also known as the “Salisbury Steak Diet”, was founded way back in the 19th century by James H. Salisbury.

His belief was that diet was the ultimate reflection of an individual’s health, with his initial findings being that American Civil War soldiers’ diarrhea could be controlled by lean, chopped steak and coffee.

He then went on to develop what’s coined as the Salisbury Steak, promoting it to be eaten three times per day while avoiding vegetables and other starchy foods, which were the cause of disease.

You can actually purchase Salisbury Steak as a “meal”, although I wouldn’t recommend eating three of them a day!

Type(s):

  • Low-carb
  • High-protein
  • Fad

SlimFast

Originally designed as a meal-replacement and liquid diet, SlimFast has evolved since inception to include a product range catering to:

  • Keto
  • High-protein, low-sugar diet
  • Energy
  • Immunity
  • Low-carb diets

That said, the main concept behind SlimFast is:

  • 1x home-cooked meal (there’s a SlimFast recipe book to help you with this)
  • 2x SlimFast meal-replacement options
  • 3x SlimFast snacks

While there’s a large amount of criticism surrounding SlimFast, there’s a huge, supportive community out there.

Type(s):

  • Liquid
  • Low-calorie

Scarsdale Medical Diet

The Scarsdale Medical Diet was developed in the 1970s by Dr. Herman Tarnower, promising rapid weight loss on a strict low-calorie and low-carbohydrate diet.

Regardless of your gender, activity levels and age, he recommended that your macros are split as such:

  • Protein: 43%
  • Carbs: 34.5%
  • Fat: 22.5%

In addition, foods excluded from the diet include ones that are rich in healthy micronutrients, such as avocados, lentils, beans and sweet potatoes.

Type(s):

  • Low-carb
  • Low-calorie
  • High-protein
  • Fad

Slimming World

Slimming World is, arguably, the largest structured diet plan in the UK and has spread to the US.

On the program, foods are allocated a “Syns” number, and you’re allocated a certain amount of Syns per day. Essentially, this is the same as calorie counting, but there are some free foods that you can eat an unlimited amount of.

However, Slimming World doesn’t take into account the level of micronutrients in foods. The Syns number is based on how filling the food is and the amount of calories. As such, healthy fats (such as oils) carry a high amount of Syns, which can mean you end up restricting healthy foods from your diet.

The good thing with this method is that it aims to reduce the amount of biscuits, sweets and alcohol you consume, all of which are good to restrict (not eliminate) when on a diet, in my opinion.

Type(s):

  • Fad

South Beach Diet

The South Beach Diet is predominantly a low-carb diet designed to help you lose weight by eating healthy foods.

It was founded by Dr. Arthur Agatston in 2003 and doesn’t eliminate most carb foods that other low-carb diets do. As such, the South Beach Diet includes fruit, vegetables, grains and legumes.

While most will classify it as a low-carb diet, it still recommends a decent (40%-60% of your food) from carbs. This changes across the three different phases:

  • Phase 1: Cuts out most carbs but promotes lean protein, low-fat dairy and unsaturated fats
  • Phase 2: Reintroduce some of the eliminated carbs from phase 1, remaining in this phase until target weight loss goal is achieved
  • Phase 3: All types of foods consumed in moderation, maintaining the weight loss and developing a healthy relationship with food

Type(s):

  • Low-carb
  • High-protein
  • High-fat

Stillman Diet

The Stillman Diet is a rather strange invention from Dr. Irwin Maxwell Stillman M.D. and Samm Sinclair Baker back in 1967 when they created The Doctor’s Quick Weight Loss Diet book.

It’s a low-carb, low-fat and high-protein diet that promotes the consumption of lean meats (high protein, low fat) but restricts healthy oils, which are high in fat.

On this diet, you eat 6 meals a day and must drink 8 glasses of water each day but there’s no monitoring of calories. You can, therefore, eat as much of the allowed foods as you like but aren’t allowed to consume any vegetables or fruit.

Type(s):

  • Low-carb
  • High-protein
  • Low-fat

Sugar Busters!

Sugar Busters! runs with a tagline of “cut sugar to trim fat” with a focus on low-GI (glycemic index) foods to lower blood sugar levels.

Since refined carb foods have a high GI, Sugar Busters! aims to reduce your consumption of refined sugar and flour. But it doesn’t promote the line that all carbs are bad, as other low-carb diets do.

Instead, this diet teaches you to consume more healthy carbs that don’t increase blood sugar levels, with most fruit and vegetables allowed on the menu.

Other than avoiding high-GI foods, most other foods are allowed on this plan, with followers of the diet experiencing steady and sustained weight loss.

Type(s):

  • Low-carb

The 1:1 Diet

Previously known as The Cambridge Diet, the company rebranded to The 1:1 Diet. The idea behind this was to place more of an emphasis on the 1:1 support you receive with a provided consultant to help you on your weight loss journey.

Keep in mind that you’re completely reliant on the provided products from the company for the duration of the diet. These are meal-replacement shakes, soups, bars and dishes.

It’s a 6-stages process, starting off on around 600 calories per day, making it a severely low-calorie diet:

  1. 3 or 4 products per day
  2. 3 products plus 1 meal of your choice
  3. 2 products plus breakfast, lunch and dinner
  4. Same as step 2 plus an additional snack
  5. 1 product plus more home-cooked meals
  6. Maintenance phase with the guidance of a consultant

Type(s):

  • Low-calorie
  • Liquid

The 4-Hour Body Diet

One way to describe Tim Ferriss is “obsessed.” He possesses an admiral trait of being obsessed with anything that he does, promoting that if you truly dedicate yourself to something, you can be successful with that task.

And this is exactly the case with his 4-Hour Body Diet, promoting it as an uncommon guide to rapid fat-loss, incredible sex and becoming superhuman.

However, it’s a very restrictive diet based on lean protein, legumes and non-starchy veggies, so there’s nothing majorly groundbreaking here.

You choose a few of the meals in the book and consume them for the duration of the diet, which is a heavily restrictive diet. While you can eat as much of the allowed foods as you like, some healthy foods and groups aren’t included. One such of these is fruits, which we know to contain a high level of micronutrients.

4 meals are consumed each day, spread 4 hours apart, hence the “4-hour” part of the diet’s name, with the following rules being applied:

  1. Don’t drink calories: i.e. don’t consume any drinks tha contain calories (as opposed to blending your meals into a liquid/pulp).
  2. Avoid fruit: Avocados and tomatoes are the exception here.
  3. White carbs aren’t allowed: Such as cereal, bread, potatoes and pasta
  4. Eat the same chosen meals over and over
  5. 1 day per week as a cheat day: He labels it as a “Dieters Gone Wild” day, and having a day off by binging actually increases fat loss.

Type(s):

  • Low-carb
  • Fad

The Dubrow Diet

As a result of struggling to control their weight and live a healthy life, reality TV stars Heather Dubrow and Terry Dubrow, MD. founded The Dubrow Diet.

It’s an interval fasting and low-carb diet based on when you eat being an important diet factor, resulting in:

  • Increased energy
  • Activating autophagy (cell repair)
  • Regulate blood sugar levels
  • Encourage stored fat to be used for fuel
  • Sustained weight loss

The diet operates in three phases:

  • Phase 1: Called “Red Carpet Ready”, it’s a 16:8 fasting cycle of fasting for 16 hours and then an eating window of 8 hours
  • Phase 2: This “Summer is Coming” phase is repeated until you’ve hit your goal weight, with a fasting window of between 12 and 16 hours.
  • Phase 3: The final “Look Hot While Living Like a Human” phase has you fasting for 16 hours a day twice per week. For the final 5 days of the program, you fast for 12 hours a day

Type(s):

  • Low-carb
  • Fasting

The Starch Solution

The Starch Solution by John and Mary McDougall flips the scales on diets eliminating starch by suggesting a food split as follows:

  • Starchy foods: 70%
  • Vegetables: 20%
  • Fruits: 10%

As such, it’s a plant-based diet with a focus on whole foods, starchy foods and those high in fiber. Foods fitting into this category are legumes, grains, proteins.

In addition, the diet eliminates:

  • Processed foods
  • Simple sugars
  • Animal produce
  • Vegetable oils

Type(s):

  • High-fiber
  • Low-fat
  • Plant-based

The Warrior Diet

The Warrior Diet was founded by Ori Hofmekler in 2001 and is based on ancient warriors who relied on survival instincts to keep them alive.

As such, the warriors would go for a long time without eating while at war/hunting and then overeat to refuel at night.

This modern version has you undereat for 20 hours each day but then eating as much food as you like at night for 4 hours, split into three phases:

  • Phase 1: Detox. 20 hours of undereating on specific foods: raw fruit and veg, veg juices, hard-boiled eggs, and more. 4 hours of overeating on a dressed salad, nuts, cooked vegetables and lean protein.
  • Phase 2: High fat. Very similar to phase 1 but a more high fat version.
  • Phase 2: Concluding fat loss. 1 or 2 days on and off, moving between high carbs then high protein with low carbs.

Type(s):

  • Fasting

The Wild Diet

Founded by Abel James, The Wild Diet’s aim is for you to lose weight while encouraging the body to burn stored fat, and thus, you lose weight.

In terms of foods, the diet takes us back to our roots, back to a time when we sourced our foods from the wild, not from processed food shipped around the world.

With this in mind, the focus is on whole foods: lean protein, vegetables and healthy fats, with a particular focus on wild fish, pasture-fed animal products and organic food where possible.

In terms of carbs, you’re limited to fruits and vegetables (both starchy and non-starchy ones), but grains are eliminated, ultimately making this a low-carb and high-fat diet.

Type(s):

  • Low-carb
  • High-fat
  • High-protein

Tongue Patch Diet

I’ve heard it all now…

The concept behind the Tongue Patch Diet is that it isn’t actually a diet… it’s a moment of insanity whereby a plastic patch is stitched (yes, stitched!) onto the tongue.

Eating becomes so painful that the only thing you can bear to consume is liquid. And so, the Tongue Patch Diet founder, Nikolas Chugay, created a liquid formula so that you consume 800 calories each day.

Nothing short of madness, in my opinion!

Type(s):

  • Low-calorie
  • Fad

Weight Watchers (WW)

You’ll be hard-pressed to find a more established type of diet than Weight Watchers, which is now rebranded as WW.

One of WW’s strongest straplines is that it doesn’t restrict you on what you eat but teaches you on how you should eat. This is done by using a points system, with all foods allocated an amount of points.

You then consume any foods up to your allocated points each day, and can choose from a huge range of WW ready-made foods. Some of which are actually pretty tasty (yes, I’ve tried some!)—check out the WW mini variety pack for some tasty treats.

If you don’t fancy pre-packaged foods, you get access to thousands of developed recipes to choose from. In addition, you can choose from subscription plans to access 1-2-1 coaching and online workshops.

The community is massive, and you won’t find a more structured type of diet.

Type(s):

  • Low-calorie

Whole30

Founded in 2009, Whole30 consists of two phases:

  1. Elimination phase: 30 days of eggs, meat, seafood, healthy fats, veggies and fruit from a specific list of foods and recipes
  2. Reintroduction phase: 10 days of reintroducing the foods you eliminated in the first phase one at a time

The idea behind reintroducing one of the foods at a time is to assess which of them has had a negative impact on fundamental aspects of your life, such as digestion, sleep, cravings, mood swings, etc.

Such eliminated foods include:

  • Alcohol
  • Legumes
  • Dairy
  • Sugar (artificial, real or otherwise)
  • Grains

One of the good things about this diet is that there’s no weigh-ins or calorie-counting, which can put you off when you don’t get the results you want and feel like you’re restricting yourself too much.

More recently, the team behind Whole30 have also released a plant-based program.

Type(s):

  • Elimination

Zone Diet

Founder Dr. Barry Sears created the Zone Diet based on his studies around how diets cause inflammation in the body, which can have a negative impact on the mind and body.

But, the catch is that this is done by balancing carbohydrates, fats and proteins in each meal, so there’s no macronutrient elimination here:

  • Carbs: 40%
  • Fat: 30%
  • Protein: 30%

One thing to note is that the carbs consumed need to have a low glycemic index, so some fruit and vegetables are excluded.

Type(s):

  • Elimination

Which of the different kinds of diets is right for me? My conclusion

There’s no simple answer to this, unfortunately.

However, if you’ve been through the expansive types of diets for weight loss above, it’s pretty clear which ones to follow and which ones to avoid.
Since researching the different diet types above, my family has shifted to a more Mediterranean type of diet, which aligns with my nutritional beliefs around non-processed food, lots of fruit and veg and healthy fats and oils.

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