Eat more to lose more: Your portions on the Fast Metabolism Diet

Eat more to lose more: Your portions on the Fast Metabolism Diet

After a lifetime of deprivation diets, many of my clients kind of freak out when they see how much food I want them to eat. The book, The Fast Metabolism Diet, is a result of 20 years of clinical work, translating proven strategies from an office setting to a plan that can work for everyone. We’ve had feedback from plenty of you that the portion guidelines are confusing, so let’s talk about that.

It’s actually pretty simple: If your goal is to lose a larger amount of weight, you eat more food.

Your basic portion guidelines

  • If you want to lose less than 20 pounds, follow the standard portions outlined in the book.
  • If you want to lose more than 20 pounds, add 1/2 portion to that standard portion, so 1.5 portions.
  • If you want to lose more than 40 pounds, eat 1.5 portions but double the veggies.

For those of you who want to lose more than 40 pounds, note that this is a change from the book. The book advises adding another 1/2 portion for every additional 20 pounds of weight you want to lose. But there’s no upper cap in the book. That would mean, for a 100-pound weight-loss goal, the book guides you to eat 3 cups of oatmeal along with three cups of fruit (for Phase 1 breakfast). The problem? That’s too much food for a normal stomach to process in one sitting.

This change comes as a result of feedback from hundreds (actually thousands) of you. Double and triple portions are just way too much food – and because you’re trying to eat all your required items, not enough veggies are making it into your menus. So here’s the new rule again:

  • For a weight loss goal of more than 40 pounds, eat 1.5 portions of all the required meal and snack elements


  • Go nuts with veggies. Pack ‘em in. You should not ever feel hungry. Eat more vegetables than you’ve ever eaten before.

Other common portion questions

Q. What’s the minimum amount of veggies I should eat?

A. I keep saying veggies are unlimited, and they are! Eat lots! Veggies are essential for fat burning and healing your metabolism. At minimum, eat 2 cups of vegetables with meals that require a veggie, and one 1 cup with snacks.

Q. I’m hungry on Phase 1. Should I eat more?

A. You should not feel hungry, and if you do, eat more veggies, even between meals. Keep in mind your vegetables don’t have to be raw. Try a baked sweet potato, or steamed kale with garlic and lemon. Or the chilled radish salad that was in my newsletter a couple of weeks ago.

Q. I’m confused about healthy fats and proteins on Phase 3. Do I need both or just one or the other?

A. For meals, you need both. For snacks, focus on the healthy fat plus veggies. This blog post covers that topic: See “Fat, Protein: Why you need both

Q. The app tells me I can have 4.5 tablespoons of oil in Phase 3. Really?

A. Yes, that would be the oil portion if you want to lose more than 20 pounds. Do you HAVE to pack in all 4.5 tablespoons? No. Keep in mind that is the full fat serving for an entire meal — if you use no other healthy fats at all. In reality, you can use 2 tablespoons for your veggie stir fry at dinner, and another 2 tablespoons in your salad dressing. Or maybe you’ll use 2 tablespoons for your stir fry, but toss in 1/8 cup of sesame seeds (1/4 cup of seeds would be the full portion). See? That amount of oil doesn’t seem so crazy now, does it?

You can and should use your best judgement and use the healthy fats you need for your cooking. And you can mix and match healthy fats appropriately: Use 1/2 portion of hummus plus 1/4 avocado. Or 1/8 cup of raw almonds plus 1/8 cup of olives. Be creative and mix it up! Bottom line: For the standard portion, use anywhere from 2 to 4 tablespoons of oil. For those doing 1.5 portions, aim for between 3 and 5 tablespoons.

Q. For fruits you say 1 cup or 1 piece. But what about small fruits like kiwi?

A. For fruits that are especially small, eat two. Imagine cutting that fruit up. Would it equal a cup? If not, add another piece (or half of a piece).

Q. What are the portion sizes for packaged breads and tortillas?

A. Even though the grain portion on Phase 3 is half that of Phase 1 (i.e. 1/2 cup wild rice compared to 1 cup on Phase 1), the standard portions for packaged items on Phase 1 and Phase 3 are the same. Otherwise, we’d get into a situation where the portion size was 3/8 of a tortilla. That’s just too weird. So for both Phase 1 and 3:

  • 1 slice of phase-appropriate bread
  • 1 8-inch phase-appropriate tortilla
  • 1/2 of a phase-appropriate bagel



Links included in this article will sometimes direct you to the website, where you can learn more about and purchase many of the products mentioned. Please know that Haylie Pomroy has a financial interest in anything that is sold from

894 thoughts on “Eat more to lose more: Your portions on the Fast Metabolism Diet

    • Hi Jesika. If you don’t have a lot to lose, the diet can be slower than it is for those who have 15, 30, 40 kilos to lose. So yes, for some people, it’s a slower loss throughout the month, and for others, they lose a lot at first, then it slows down. Everyone is different.

  1. Hi Christine! Love this forum!
    I just started today. I have 100 lbs. to lose. Do I only add 1/2 serving more to each protein, carb, fruit portion?

    How would that look for the dry oatmeal in a smoothie-and also fruit portion?
    Can You spell it out for me mathematically speaking?

    I am terrible in math and this diet requires so much math to figure out correct portions. !

    Thank You!

    • Hi Robin. Welcome!
      Yes — for you, start with 1 1/2 portions.
      For the oatmeal smoothie, you would use 3/4 cup dry oats (or 1 1/2 cups cooked) plus 1 1/2 cups of berries. Then add as much ice and/or water as you need.

      • I have taken the app recently. I am bit confused with portion sizes. What does 1 cup means..can you tell in terms of Quantity.
        In the app I can add only one fat at a time. Eg: I can add either raw almonds or raw flex seeds.
        can I eat a combination of nuts like some almonds and some flax seed.
        Please let me about the cup portions weight.

        • Hi Prasad. In the US, a “cup” is a liquid measure, but we also use it for dry measurements. It is not as accurate as using grams or ounces, but that’s how we do it. For fruit, for example, if you cut up an apple, that will be about one cup. So you can use that as a guide for quantities.
          For the nuts/seeds — yes, you can half of one, and half of another — that is fine. The app will only let you enter one or the other, but you can certainly combine in that way.

  2. Thanks for the reply, Christine.

    I am used to eating large portions, so eating what Haylie had originally prescribed is okay with me.
    Am I able to do that or has she changed things up-ie: eating only 1/2 portion more no matter how many pounds over 20 lbs. one needs to lose?

    IF I am still able to eat as originally laid out in the book-ie: for every 20 lbs. needing to lose-we add 1/2 portions- how would that look (mathematically speaking) for me for my protein, carb, and fruit and fat intakes?

    Thank You! Robin

    • Hi Robin. I would still try the 1 1/2 portions and eat lots and lots of veggies. The vegetables on this plan are so important — and if you’re eating 8 ounces of protein and 2 cups of grains with every meal, you’re just not going to have room left for many vegetables.

  3. Hi Christine,
    I just started the diet and I am beginning to lose weight. I was wandering if WASA rice cakes is included and eventually in which phase and quantity. They are gluten free, organic and brown rice. Thank a lot !!

    • Just check the ingredients — if they are just brown rice and water, you could have them on Phase 1. 1 ounce would be the portion size.

  4. Hi. I have 80 lbs to lose and plan to start this program on Monday, May 19th. I want to use the ideal meal map to begin with. For phase 1 lunch it lists an open-faced turkey sandwich and 1 orange. Since I have over 40 lbs to lose = 1 1/2 portions how does the sandwich fit into this? Do I eat 1 1/2 sandwiches and 1 1/2 orange?
    Or do I break it down according to the individual ingredients – 6 oz turkey and 1 1/2 slices bread?

    Thanks for your help.

    • Hi Claudie. Yes, you eat an extra 50% of the recipe. So yes, you’d have an extra 1/2 sandwich, and another 1/2 of an orange.

  5. Thank You for Your quick reply, Christine.

    Is basmati rice okay to eat for a grain serving?

    Thank You! Robin

  6. Thank You again, Christine! I have another question for You!

    Do You know if Haylie has an opinion concerning the Paleo lifestyle diet-most especially their theory surrounding abstaining from grains?

    Thank You! Robin

    • Quite a few paleo recipes will work for the FMD. But Haylie’s diet includes grains as an important component, so they are certainly not the same.

  7. I have followed the plan assiduously, using the app, including water & appropriate exercise.I’m 50, 5’6″, 162 lbs and my goal is to lose 30 lbs. LOVE eating nothing but whole foods. I have not dropped but 3 lbs. I do have a history of not eating for hours, and of avoiding carbs. Do you think I will begin to lose once my metabolism gets corrected? I’m willing to stick with it but please tell me some people need WEEKS on the diet before they start to lose weight.

  8. Hi, i’m 22. My height is 160 cm, my weight is 66kilos and my goal weight is 50 kilos.
    I started the diet a week ago, but actually I haven’t lost that much (less than 1 kg), even if I perfectly follow the directions on the book and on the app.
    I even eat plenty of veggies, drink 2-3 liters of water, do fit excercises and follow the directions about
    Maybe my mistake was that I drank – for breakfast, all the days of phase 1 and 3 in the first week- 1 cup of rice milk adding 1/2 cup of oat.

    I’m very disappointed about my first result… Was that a big mistake? How much of rice milk and oat should I have for breakfast, at least in ph. 1?

  9. I have a question regarding size portions for items like turkey bacon and jerky, how many oz of those items should we have? I can’t imagine eating 4 oz. of jerky or bacon. The other question I have is, when your making one of Haley’s recipes, do you eat extra protien,veg,and grain or are they inclusive for each items portion size? I’m on my 3rd wk. and am disappointed in my 1 ib. wt. loss in week two. I don’t think I’m eating enough veg. but, I’m never hungry.

    • Hi. For a meal, you can have 4 oz. But most people don’t. Instead, many people will have maybe 3 oz of chicken breast and 1 oz of turkey bacon. Or for P3, one whole egg plus 2 oz of turkey bacon. For Haylie’s recipes, one portion will typically satisfy the requirement for a meal. If you are eating the 1 1/2 portions, you’d need to consume another 1/2 serving. You can always eat more veggies. Week 2 is a slow week for most people, so it’s great that you still lost a pound.

  10. Hi Christine,

    I have done the FMD for two weeks now and I am not seeing the exact weight loss I want. I know that if this happens we are instructed to get our lab tests done to see if there is a deeper issue BUT I am wondering if I could try upping my portions. Ideally I want to lose more than 20 pounds, but stuck with the 20 pound portions for the first two weeks. Can I go to the next portion up for my next two weeks? Thanks so much.


    • Yes — you can bump up to 1 1/2 portions. But make sure you are eating lots of veggies. Haylie tells us that it’s counterintuitive to eat less — eating less can have the opposite effect.

  11. Is Ezekial bread ok?
    Portion size: 1/2. Cup oats. Is that for one meal or entire day?
    Phase 1: portion size for fruit snacks please.

    • Ezekiel 4:9 bread is approved. For all portions, it’s per meal, not per day. Phase 1 fruit snacks are the same as meals — 1 cup or 1 piece.

  12. Hello! I was wondering if nectarines are ever appropriate for any of the phases. It is not on the food lists in the book or cookbook but I do not understand why? To me nectarines can’t be worse than peaches or apricots or apples, so if they are not included in the diet what is the reasoning. Thank you.

  13. Quick portion question: are the portions listed in the book for each serving or listed for the entire day? Eg: phase 1 grains is 1 cup. Is that 1 cup for the day or per serving (1 cup oatmeal for breakfast & 1 cup quinoa for dinner?). Thanks!

  14. My friend and I are on the diet and love it. My question is about our books … They are different. He has a portion size chart on pg 106 and I can’t find one anywhere.

    • There were two printings — the second printing has the portions in a chart form, which is just a little easier to read.

    • I have a similar question. On Page 106 of my book the chart says phase 3 portion for hummus is 1/3 cup and my friend’s book says the portion is 1/2 cup. Which is it supposed to be and why are the charts different? Also, her book says on page 105 phase 3 oatmeal cooked is 1 cup but my book says it should be 1/2 cup. Which is it? Do you have the correct charts available anywhere on your website?

      • Hi. Oatmeal portions are the same in both books: P1 is 1 cup cooked, and P3 is 1/2 cup cooked. As for the hummus, it’s 1/3 cup on P3.

    • It’s not included on the diet. Tomatillos are certainly lower in sugar that regular tomatoes. But they are not on the food lists — so you’ll have to make that decision on your own.

  15. I need clarification on the portion tables in the book, for example for the 20-40lbs table it says 6oz of meat. Is that 6oz at each meal or is 6oz of meat your limit for the entire day?


  16. Hi Christine, I find difficult to find jerky in my country. Can you suggest a brand that I could find on the internet or alternative recipes for snack on phase 2? Thanks again for your support.

  17. Question I made up my own smoothie for breakfast this morning. I’m just on the regular portion size and on phase 1. I’m now thinking I may have put too much of some things
    1 pear
    1/4 cup dry oatmeal
    1/2cuo rice milk
    4-5 strawberries

    I was worried about the oats and rice milk together is that too much grain

    What is the portion size for grain when using dry oats as your grain in phase 1

    What is the portion size when using rice milk as your grain in phase 1

    • I think that’s okay if you are using old-fashioned oats. You went overboard on the fruit, but if your pear was a small one, you’re probably fine.
      For dry oats, it depends on whether you use steel cut or old fashioned. 1/4 cup dry steel cut cook up to 1 cup, while 1/2 cup dry old fashioned cook up to 1 cup.
      For rice milk, if you use just a few tablespoons, you don’t need to count it as anything. Rice milk only has about 11 grams of carbs in one cup, whereas a cup of oats has about 45 grams.
      So I think your smoothie is basically fine.

      • Ok well since phase 1 is 1 cup fruit and a pear did not equal 1 cup I had strawberries so added them.
        Just so I know how much rice milk would count as a serving of grain.
        The oats I have are just gluten free oats I assume not steel cut. So 1/2 cup dry is serving or 1 cup cooked.
        Thanks this info helps me make up recipes instead of relying on cookbook all the time

        • As per the book, portions for fruit are one piece (apples, oranges, pears, etc) OR 1 cup (berries). Obviously, you have to use your judgement because some pears/apples are huge and others are very small, so it’s a guideline.
          I would not suggest using rice milk as your sole grain. Here’s why: one cup of brown rice has about 45 grams carbs, 2 grams of fat and 3.5 grams of fiber. Unsweetened rice milk (1 cup) has about 11 grams carbs, but 2.5 grams fat and no fiber. So if you drank enough milk to equal a portion of carbs (4 cups!), you’d also be getting 10 grams of fat along with it. That’s why Haylie really doesn’t give a portion for rice milk as a complete grain portion. It’s best to use it as needed in your tea or oatmeal, or smoothie, and no more than 1/2 cup or so.

          • Ok great that helps a lot with the rice milk. So in that smoothie the oats are my grain so I should use 1/2 cup oats. (So it will be a grain potion) and maybe cut down on the rice milk a bit correct.

            Thanks this helps I like being about to make up my own recipes especially with my vitamix

  18. Hello
    I started rhe diet today. I want to lose between 10 to 15 pounds. I ‘ve being feeling hungry. So i can eat vegetables between meals. That is good.
    Second question: i stsrted an invitro (fertility treatment) is a bad idea to start the diet in the begining of an invitro treatment? I started with hormones
    Thank youmfor your answer

    • Hi. Please check with your doctor on the fertility question – Haylie has not specifically addressed this, and always recommends talking to your doctor about any medications you are taking and the diet.

  19. I have about 60 pounds to lose. Hailey’s cook book says I should eat double the veggies. Does that mean I need to eat 4 cups of veggies with my meals and 2 cups with snacks? If so, can I graze on vegetables all day instead of trying to get 4 cups into my lunch hour? Thank you so much for your time and support! You are truly helping me change my life!

    • Snack portions are the same as other portions, except for your protein snacks in Phase 2, where they are half that of a meal.

  20. I am on week 4 of of the diet. I have at least 80 lbs to lose; I probably actually need to lose 100. I have been eating portions based on the books recommendation for 80 lbs, so I have been eating 3 portions. But, it looks like there was a change from the book and I should only eat 1 1/2 servings and not 3 servings?
    With eating 3 servings my energy is better but I had hoped for more weight loss. Is this typical? What should I do to speed up the weight loss?

    • Hi Lynn. Yes — try dropping down to 1 1/2 portions, but then add lots and lots of veggies — at least two or three cups per meal. That should help move things along. Good luck!

  21. Hello, just begins today but made the mistake to serve
    9 oz of lean ground turkey instead of 6Oz for lunch, is that bad? Also my smoothie I used steel-cut oat 1c,whit 1 fruit, by reading all the post I should use only 1/2 cup?. I put oats in water overnight to make it soft and dump all in the blender with the fruits.

    • Hi. 6 oz of ground turkey would be the correct lunch portion if you need to lose more than 20 pounds. And for your smoothie on Phase 1, you can have 1 1/2 cups of COOKED oats, or 3/4 cup dry oats.

  22. Hi! I’m on Week 1, Day 3 and I am trying to lose more than 20 pounds. I am trying to consume all the food the app is telling me to eat but its proving to be too much for me. 4 1/2 egg whites in the morning or 1.5 cups of quinoa is so much food. Please let me know if I have to eat the complete portions.

    • Hi Jessie. If it’s too much food, then try dropping down to the standard portion, and including plenty of vegetables.

  23. Hey i just started the diet Monday… So far so good (and im not hungry as I thought I would be!). As an orthodox Jew we use grape juice or wine on the Sabbath as well as eating bread. I was wondering if there were others who had the same question and what were the options given. Thanks so much in advance for your time and effort in helping us all out.
    Ps what should I use instead of PAM for the pan to stop sticking to the food. Aaargh! I dislike washing and scraping!!!

    • Hi Ari. Glad you are doing well so far. Small symbolic amounts of off-diet foods for religious purposes should not seriously derail your efforts. It’s very much a personal choice. I have heard from others who make concessions to accommodate the diet on a temporary basis, but clearly, it’s a personal decision. Get yourself a good nonstick pan — look for one with a ceramic nonstick coating. Those seem to work best. You can also use a couple of tablespoons of vegetable broth in the pan to keep from sticking.

      • Hey thanks so much for the response. It means a lot. Sorry I didn’t see it sooner.
        Im doing awesome on this diet. I never thought I would like veggies so much!

  24. How about that Yacon Syrup…it’s supposed to take inches off. Would it be allowed? I figured I could have it for P1 and P3.

    Many thanks for all the good reads.


    • Hi Kathy. Haylie hasn’t yet made a ruling on yacon. I agree it seems like it would work since it doesn’t appear to raise blood-sugar levels.

  25. I feel like I’m repeating a question but I need clarification. If I have 10 pounds to lose in phase 1 Im eating 3 meals each with a cup of cooked grains??? For example, breakfast is a cup of steel cut oats, lunch has a cup of quinoa, and dinner a cup of brown rice??

    • That’s right — a cup of grains for each meal on Phase 1. I know — doesn’t feel like a “diet” does it?

  26. Am I really allowed to count a sweet potato as an unlimited vegetable on Phase 3? It seems so decadent! I am leary about the portion size for that. I also have a question on coconut milk. It is listed as a fruit on my Phase 3 list. What is the portion size? I have also seen on this site that it is listed as a healthy fat. Which is it? Also What is the portion size for Almond milk as a healthy fat? I have seen 1/4 cup … My question is the fat ratio of almond milk (trader joe’s unsweetened is 3g of fat and 40 calories for a cup. 2 tablespoons of olive oil has much more fat and calories. Just confused……

    • Yes, you are. But common sense will tell you to be prudent — keep mixing things up. 5 sweet potatoes every day is a lot of starch, for example, and you’re eating them to the exclusion of other veggies. So just keep it balanced and reasonable, maybe one sweet potato a day. Coconut and almond milk — should be a healthy fat. If you have 1/4 cup or less, it doesn’t have to count as anything. A cup or more and you should count as a healthy fat.

  27. Where can I find a list of the brands that Hayllie prefers? I am planning to start the diet on Jun. 29 and want to shop and pre cook many meals this week. Thanks.

  28. Once again thank you for your reply.
    Also what yellow mustard and spicy brown mustard is ok to use on different phases (can i use french’s ot the like?). Also how long in minutes should snack take approximately and how long for meals? Thanks.

    • You can use any mustard that doesn’t include sugar, soy or other off-diet ingredients. Last time I looked, French’s was fine.
      Are you asking how long it should take to consume your meals? About 30-40 minutes for a meal and 15 minutes for a snack seems about right.

      • Amazing thanks a lot.
        Also i finish the diet on Sunday night… Can i eat out of the diet then? July 4th weekend celebration? A beer or two? Or do i have to wait till Monday???

  29. Hi. I need to lose 38 lbs and just started this week – finished phase 1 and will start phase 2 tomorrow. Thank you so much for clarifying how much vegetables one should eat. I have not been eating enough . What type of weight loss can one expect? Thanks

    • Hi Sandra. I couldn’t predict — it’s very individual. But the diet does work! good luck — I’m sure you’ll do great.

  30. On phase 3 do I cut my oatmeal by 1/2 cup?…but one slice of Ezekiel bread is ok? I blew it last week then…I was eating a full cup of Quinoa for dinner on phase 3…wow…takes a long moment to get this right!!!….and the book i I have did not give portion sizes so I was quit liberal with my olive and sesame oils…..darn..

    • Hi. Yes — oatmeal is 1/2 cup. The reason Haylie left the bread portion at one slice is that the math gets difficult very quickly. If the P3 bread portion is 1/2 slice, then if you want to lose more than 20 pounds, it’s 3/4 slice — pretty annoying to try to use 3/4 slice of bread. So she said one slice is fine for P3 (or 1 1/2 slice for more than 20 pounds).
      Everyone makes little mistakes — it’s a lot to keep track of! But little errors here and there really should not make a big difference.

  31. I am confused over portions of fat allowed in phase 3. How many olives would be considered a serving? Thank you. I am going into week two and love this diet. I have not been hungry once.

  32. I’ve been using your plan for the last 2 weeks and am very happy with it. My daughter (24) is a type 1 diabetic on an insulin pump. Would the FMD be appropriate for her? I think she’d do great on Phases 1 and 3. I’m a little concerned about Phase 2. She often needs a shot of juice to stabilize her blood sugar if it begins to fall. She can adjust basal rates. Just wondering how she would go about the FMD. Thanks!

  33. Hi,

    I’m having a bit of financial problem in following the diet. I can’t honstly afford the amount of meat that has to be eaten and I am already having a lot of white eggs! I saw that there is a pea protein that I can have in Phase 2. Could I have it as a complement? Thanks!

    • Hi Carol. Haylie doesn’t recommend protein powders other than her own. She just cannot vouch for the quality of other products (and she says there is a huge variance in quality). Keep in mind that anyone can use beans/legumes and lentils instead of animal protein in Phases 1 and 3 — that’s a real money-saver. 1/2 cup cooked beans equals 4 oz meat.

  34. Hey i finish the diet on Sunday night as of yet i lost about 15lbs! Whoohoooo!
    Question… Can i eat out of the diet then? July 4th weekend celebration? A beer or two? Or do i have to wait till Monday???
    Happy independence day!
    If you want to email the answer it’s fine too.

    • Hi Ari. It’s up to you. Haylie would love you to stick it out through the final days, but of course it’s up to you if you decide you’re done. Congrats on your success!

      • Hmmmmm ok i think I will stick it out and celebrate Tuesday, thanks for the response and i hope to redo it again soon. I discovered on this diet so many veggies that I never liked, to actually taste good,! Thanks for your help and support. Happy July 4th!

  35. Hi there!!!! Just a few questions I can’t figure out help please

    1) If you want to have rice milk and brown rice cereal for phase one what are the portion sizes when adding an extra 1/2 serving?

    2) when should you be portioning meat or fish? Before or after cooking when no recipe is involved?


    • Hi. There isn’t a big rule on rice milk — but if you take a look at the carb content, it’s certainly less than brown rice cereal. So I’d say you could probably have about 3/4 cup cereal and 1/2 cup milk to make your grain portion. As for proteins, measure before cooking.

  36. 1) Is that the same when working with fish? Isn’t it a lot for 9oz of smoked salmon?

    2)If I was eating deli meat or turkey bacon I would have the 6oz of deli meat and weight the turkey bacon before cooked?

  37. Hi. I don’t want to lose weight. But I would like to detox my body and learn how to eat more healthy before I go into menopause, which is right around the corner. How can I follow the program so that I don’t lose any weight?

    • Hi Lourdes. Yes, you can. You can follow the plan for maintenance. Follow all of the basic rules — no corn, wheat, sugar, soy, dairy, caffeine. The follow a meal plan similar to the Phase 3 meals — but use any of the foods allowed on the whole diet. Then for your snacks, alternate between fruit and protein snacks. Good luck!

  38. Hi – at one point in the book, Haylie recommends doubling vegetable portions if you are trying to lose 20-40 pounds. But since vegetables are “unlimited”, how would one go about doing this?

    • Hi MJ. The suggested veggies are two cups for a meal and 1 cup for a snack — those are just guidelines. For more than 20 pounds weight loss, you should be using 1 1/2 portions — so that would be a recommended 3 cups of veggies per meal, and 1.5 for a snack.

  39. I am having difficulty eating within 30 minutes after I wake up. Is there something little I could eat and then eat my breakfast 45 minutes/1 hour later?

    • Yes — you can swap your breakfast with your morning snack. So have your a.m. snack within 30 minutes of waking, then have your breakfast 2-3 hours later.

  40. Just started the diet on Monday and have 15 lbs to lose. Followed the diet through the day as outlined with carbs and time intervals for eating. Started feeling sick (nausea) around 5 pm after having fruit snack. Still ate dinner a little later. Nausea got worse and began to have diarrhea off and on all evening and the next day. Felt sick on day 2 and couldn’t follow diet exactly. I’m not used to eating a lot of fruit in general. I ate only fruits I’m accustomed to eating. Nothing new at all. Is this a normal detox sort of thing? Do I start day 3 or wait til next Monday and start over again. I feel fine. Thanks for your response!

    • Hi Sarah. That’s very strange. I am NOT a doctor — but it sure sounds like the bug that’s going around the office here — a summer flu that comes on quickly. It could be some kind of food sensitivity, but you say you haven’t eaten anything new. Did you give up caffeine? Caffeine withdrawal side-effects are typically headache, but can manifest in other ways too. Hopefully by now you are feeling better.

      • Yes thanks. I’m better now. I loosely followed the first day of phase 2. I am decafed now but no headaches there. I really don’t drink a lot of coffee. Since my message of this morning, I’ve seen several posts from other people with gi problems, dizziness or itching. I think I was detoxing which really is a good thing. I normally don’t eat much fruit and five times a day is a lot for me. The rest of the diet should be ok now that it’s out of my system. If the fruit upsets my stomach again on week 2 is it ok just to have it three times a day instead of five for the rest of the 28 days for phase 1? Thanks again!

        • It’s pretty amazing. When I gave up coffee, I had myself all the way down to just 1/2 cup a day. But when I finally quit entirely, I still got the wicked headache. Just shows you how powerful caffeine is. On phase 1, you have fruit four times — not five (no fruit with dinner). One thing you could try is using tomatoes for one of those fruits — Haylie has said that tomato can optionally be counted as a fruit.

  41. Hi Christine. I am a little confused about coconut milk. Specifically when it is in a can or carton. The can seems to have a thicker consistency. Can canned coconut milk and carton coconut milk be used interchangeably? I love reading your posts. Super helpful!

    • Hi Sara. It drives me NUTS that those two products share the same name. In the recipes, when we say “coconut milk” we typically are talking about the kind in the carton, which is much more watery and is a beverage. When we say “canned coconut milk” we’re talking about the heavy stuff in the can. They cannot be used interchangeably, though.

  42. One more question after reading a bunch of other posts. I think I am exercising too much. Here is what I did last week starting on a Saturday: 5 mile mud run, walked 5 miles, ran a 5K and walked 2 miles, biked 12 miles, pilates, pilates, day of rest. Too much? I like getting outside everyday and I don’t just want to lose weight. This is a reshape my body and change my life style program for me. Should I back off of the working out? My weightloss has been slow.

    • Haylie has told us that doing more than the recommended exercise can have the opposite effect, and sometimes result in weight GAIN. I know it’s tough since it isn’t your routine, but maybe try stepping down on the exercise and just doing the recommended amount for a couple of weeks.

  43. I am just starting week four. I have lost 9lbs so far, but I am at a stand still. I lost 8lbs the first two weeks and only 1lb week 3. I am at a stand still, any recommendations??

  44. Also, you should know I had my thyroid removed 3 years ago I had stage 3 cancer.
    Since that time I had a lot of life stressors and I went from 164lbs to 195.7lbs. Since January of this year I am down 25lbs. 9lbs since I started FMD. I am on s
    Synthroid 200mc to keep my level low, like I would be hyper. But I am at a stand still!

  45. I love these blogs. I just found Silks Almond Coconut milk and it is really yummy. I am wondering what a portion size would be in phase 1 and 3 and do I count it as a fruit and protein?


    • You can only have almond milk or coconut milk on Phase 3, not phase 1. If you use less than 1/2 cup, it doesn’t need to count as anything (they are very watered down). If you use more, around 2 cups or so, then you should count as a healthy fat.

  46. What are some general guidelines on the snack portions. I know the veggies are unlimited and fruits are 1.5 cups or 1.5 pieces for 20-40 lbs but I am looking more at the guac and nut butter snack portions.


  47. I know that the fruit portion is 1 cup, but is it 1/2 cup is a recipe? The oatmeal smoothie and Strawberry French Toast call for 1/2 cup in the book.

    • If a recipe calls for 1/2 cup, then you can do one of two things — add another 1/2 cup to the recipe (if you think the recipe will still work), or have another 1/2 cup on the side. For or smoothies, I just add a full cup of fruit.

  48. How many extra days can you do phase 2??

    Also can you take any supplements with thermogenic formula ex: Acai, capsicum , chromium, green tea extract, guarana seed, ?? The product is by IT works called Thermofit Would it be ok to take these? I don’t want to do anything that would mess with Haylie’s plan.

    • Haylie recommends taking whatever supplements are recommended by your doctor — but additional pills are really not necessary. It’s up to you. As for PHase 2, you can do up to three days of Phase 2.

  49. What are some general guidelines on the snack portions. I know the veggies are unlimited and fruits are 1.5 cups or 1.5 pieces for 20-40 lbs but I am looking more at the guacamole and nut butter snack portions

    • Nutter butters are 2 Tbls as the standard portion, so 3 for you. Oils are 4.5 Tbls. for you, and guacamole is what you’d get from 3/4 of an avocado, so about 1/2 cup.

  50. Just started today. Had my fruit snack first- a cup of blueberries. Did cardio and an hour and 40 minutes later I had a cup of oatmeal with Apple. The app indicates that 2 hours has not passed between the breakfast and snack. Should I restart tomorrow?

    • Hi. You don’t have to start over — just remember next time to leave at least 2 hours, preferably 3, between your meals.

  51. I’m having trouble understanding why the portion size for egg whites is only 3 for meal proteins. Egg whites are so low in calories and protein, 3 is only about 10 grams of protein and 51 calories when you could have a 4 oz piece of chicken instead that is way higher in cals and 36 grams of protein in any of the phases. Couldn’t you then have more egg whites until it equals the amount of protein and cals as the chicken instead?

    • Hi Carol. I’m not sure why Haylie limited egg whites to three per meal, but it’s certainly very deliberate — it’s not a mistake.

  52. I’m starting my second week, and finding it really hard to navigate the book. I’ve made several shopping errors and find it quite frustrating! No broccoli except on phase 3? No nectarines, but we can have peaches??? We can have tomatoes and onions and hot peppers but no salsa? HELP ME! I’m so confused. There are also many contradictions and differences between the Kindle book and the app. It would really, really help if somehow you could coordinate and correct these things. Having aired my frustrations, I do want to say I’m feeling better already, and have lost about one pound a day. I’m not going to weight the second week because I don’t want to get discouraged when that doesn’t continue in the following weeks. Thank you.

    • Hi Jennie. It’s okay! It is a lot to take in at first — but after a while, it really becomes second nature. And small mistakes — like accidentally eating broccoli in Phase 3 — will not make a difference in your progress. And you CAN have salsa! After all, it’s just tomatoes, onions and peppers. You can certainly have that on P1 and P3. So glad you are feeling good!

  53. Despues de leer mas de una vez su libro he empezado la dieta y aunque me sobran 25 kg en la primera semana sol he perdido 1 kg. He evitado todo lo que no se debe comer , de heccho ya hacia mucho tiempo que la mayoria de las reglas las cumplia. No se que puede haber sido. Me gustaria me diera alguna sugerencia.

  54. Hi there! I just started the diet today and am looking to lose some weight as well as get back to the muscular body I had a year ago!
    I do have a question about Phase 1,
    All of the snacks are Fruit but if we are feeling hungry are we able to eat Vegetables between Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner, in addition to the cup of fruit?

    Also, if we work out in Phase 1, it says to eat half an hour before, should we be eating fruits and or vegetables here? As well, should we not be eating anything after working out if we do eat 30 min before?

    Thanks so much!

    • Yes — you can eat veggies anytime, even between meals and with snacks. So yes, you can have a salad or veggies with your fruit snacks. Ideally, Haylie would like you to have eaten a snack or meal about 30 minutes prior to your cardio on Phase 1. You don’t need to eat again right away — just your next regular snack or meal.

    • I gave up coffee in Oct. 2013, when I first started working with Haylie on her book. At that point, I had 2 cups in the morning, plus tea in the afternoon. I wasn’t crazy about giving it up — but I’m so glad I did, and that I’d no longer addicted to caffeine. Nowadays, I do find that I can have a cup of decaf with non-dairy milk now and then, just for the taste. Sometimes I don’t even finish the cup, but it’s enough to give me that nice taste. So after the diet, it’s up to you. I certainly don’t want to go back to being addicted to caffeine, but I find that a cup of good decaf every now and then satisfies the craving.

  55. On phase three, are you suppose to pick a “healthy fat” OR a “protein” or are you suppose to have one of each?
    Thanks for your help!

  56. Hello! I started the diet with 20 pounds to go and I am half way there. Yeah!! 1st question: do I need to lesson the quantity of food since I only have 10 pounds to lose? 2nd question: I went out for dinner with some friends and though I tried to be good, I did have alcohol and not approved food. (Peer pressure!) Do I need to start the 4 weeks over from that point for my metabolism to be fixed? Last question: I think my mother-in-law has decided to go on this diet and I would guess she has over 100 pounds to lose. She should have 1.5 size proportions and fill up with vegetables, right? Thank you!!!

    • Hi Shelly. That’s terrific! Congrats!
      If you were using 1 1/2 portions, then at this point you should start using the standard portions. If you have been using the standard portions all along, then just keep doing that.
      As for the alcohol, you do not need to start over — just pick up where you left off. You can always add a week or two at the end of you need to or want to.
      And yes — as for you mother in law, she would use 1 1/2 portions and include lots of vegetables.

  57. Hello,
    Just need some portion clarification. I feel like I am making this harder than it is, but I just keep second guessing myself even if alot of the posts on here are about portions.

    I need to lose 100 lbs. On phase 1 meal meat is 6ounces, so for the open faced turkey sandwich I would use 9ounces and one and a half slices bread??

  58. Hello! I’m trying to make the diet but I have several doubts.
    Considering the portions mentioned in the book, we are supposed to eat an amount of meat, an amount of grains, and so on. The questions is. the portions are to be eaten in each meal, or we have to eat that portion PER DAY?
    I may not be explaining myself very well as I’m not a native speaker, so I rephrase:
    Do we have to eat 6 ounces of meat at lunch, and 6 more during dinner? Or it’s just 6 ounces per day? Of course, according to the phase in which I’m going through.
    Sorry about my english…

  59. I have about 65 more pounds to lose and have been on the diet for 2 weeks and lost 10 pounds. I am having extreme difficulty drinking half my body weight in water. I try to drink as much as possible but there are times I can’t be drinking water at work and other times when it’s just too much. Is there a minimum amount of water to make the diet work? Sometimes I have iced herbal tea instead to get some flavor. Is this okay? I also have difficulty eating so much protein – sometimes I’m just too full or it makes me feel sick – is it okay to eat less? Thank you!

    • Hi Diana. Yes, herbal iced tea is fine. Haylie has said that 100 ounces per day is the upper limit. Get as close as you can to your water requirement — it really is important. As for your other portions, try staying with 1 1/2 portions — so that would be 6 oz protein (pre-cooked), or 9 oz. fish. You shouldn’t be stuffed — you want room for vegetables.

  60. Love the diet. Have been on it since April 1, 2014 and have lost 34 lbs. I do have some questions though. The weights for the proteins are before cooking, correct? Also, my book has the coconut milk as a protein, not a fat (as I see some mentioning it here as). And I thought olives were on the veggies list and unlimited on phase 3. If I have been doing these wrong, then I need to correct it. Would still like to lose another 20 lbs. Thanks.

    • Yes — prior to cooking for meat and fish. As for coconut, all coconut products should be under healthy fat, including coconut milk. Olives are also a healthy fat. Congratulations on your success so far!

  61. I know this is an awful question but I am entering phase 3 on my first week and was wondering how much it would divert things if i had a very tiny slice of cake. We are having a going away party at my work and someone brought my favorite kind. I have been 100% on line with it so far and have already lost 4 pounds but I really want that cake.

    • Hi Nikk. It’s up to you, but Haylie says that as little as 4 grams of sugar – about a teaspoon – can stall your weight loss for days.

  62. Do I measure my 4 oz portion of protien before or after cooking? i.e. 4oz cooked turkey bacon equals way more than uncooked.

  63. My daughter and I just started the diet yesterday. I have a question about the Chicken & Barley Soup Phase 1 portion.The book I have says that one serving is 3 cups! Seems like a lot considering one serving of barley is one cup. Also, do you have any recommendations for a Phase 1 salad dressing? Thank you.

  64. For those who want to lose more than 40 pounds the book says to eat fruit during phase 2 where as if you want to lose only 20 pounds no furtie during pahse 2 except lemon and limes. Please help I dont want to eat the wrong thing.

      • Then there needs to be a correction in BOTH books (The Fast Metabolism Diet & The Fast Metabolism Diet Cookbook) pages 107 & 26 respectively in the “Long-Term Weight Loss Goal: More than 40 Pounds” section. It is very difficult to feel calm and relaxed as Haylie suggests for us to heal during this diet when there are so many mistakes in the details of the books. Which she emphasizes in Rule #5 “You must stick to the foods allowed on your phase. Religiously. I repeat: only the food list for your phase.” This isn’t the first mistake I found either. Not to mention all the other clients that are on the blogs frustrated and clinging to every word in these books. I see posts from 2013 that have the same issues as recent posts. There needs to be a revision published and all of us who bought these books should get the revisions for free!

  65. I’m not much of a post person…but this is important … HOW DO I KNOW WHEN A RESPONSE/REPLY has been made to my question(s)? Thanks

    • Hi Belle. Just check back on your question. I do get to all of them, and try for an answer within 48 hours. You can also post questions to Haylie Facebook page.

  66. Starting Phase 3 of the diet tomorrow. Am I suppose to have a healthy fat AND a protein for each meal and snack? Or, is it one or the other. Another thought, I do not have a gall bladder. Will that impact my results? If so, how do I modify the Phase. Thank you very much.

  67. I just started the diet 2 days ago and I am having a difficult time eating that amount of food in one meal. Can I break it up into several meals? It’s just to much food for me. I an only trying to loose 20 lbs.

    • Hi. If you are having trouble eating all the food, then you can decrease your portions a little bit for everything. So instead of skipping an element of a meal (for example, skipping a fruit requirement), make sure you eat a proportional amount of all of your meal requirements.

  68. Hace unos dias compre el libro ya lo termine de leer estoy organizando mis dias para comenzar la dieta pero me resulta complicado la fase tres, me podrían orientar, necesito ejemplos de comidas mas sencillos y rapidos de los que hay en el libro. gracias

  69. tengo varias semillas de lino, chia, girasol, sesamo blanco y negro, alpiste, en que fase las puedo consumir?? tengo fucus es patillas las puedo tomar todos los días o en alguna fase en particular?? puedo consumir te verde y rojo??

    • Las semillas son permitidos en la Fase 3. Té verde o rojo ni se les permite, ya que ambos contienen cafeína.

  70. Can you recommend a butter or olive oil substitute for baked sweet potatoes in phase 1? I find them so boring dry, but I know butter and oil are off limits!

    • There really isn’t a fat substitute for Phase 1. But I like my baked sweet potatoes mashed — you don’t miss the fat. Mash them with some rice milk or vegetable broth, then sprinkle with cinnamon. Yum!

  71. Gracias Christine, te hago otra consulta, tengo patillas de fucus, las puedo tomar todos los dias o en alguna fase en particular?? estoy haciendo un diario de todas las comidas que hago se los podria mandar a uds para que me orienten, pienso que es mucha comida!!

    • Lo siento – No sé “tengo Patillas de fucus.” En general, Haylie recomienda tomar cualquier vitaminas y los suplementos son recomendados por su médico.

  72. I find it hurts to try to eat as much as is listed in the 40+ category. I only lost 2 lbs my first week and I was in agony wishing I could stop eating. Breakfast in this diet is the equivalent of a days food for me. If I back off to the 20Lb portions will I still lose? I hate protein (a little tuna – turkey maybe) and whole eggs, I am allergic to legumes and don’t cook. This is really hard for me and I am totally miserable thinking oh no I have to eat again. I just can’t seem to get it all in. Also my energy level is really low, barely feel like moving even though I added a cup of caffeinated tea each day. I guess I have lived on cereal and coffee with cream for too many years.

    • Hi Sheila. You shouldn’t feel stuffed. If it’s too much food, it’s fine to drop down to the standard portions. Try that — and be sure to have plenty of veggies. Especially if you’re on the short side, the standard portions may be enough, even if you have more to lose.

  73. HI – I am just starting and was wondering how the vegetables can be cooked.
    i notice there is no roasting – correct? So is everything steamed? Sweet potatoes? Brussel sprouts? Butternut squash?


    • Hi Lundy. You can roast vegetables (with oil) on Phase 3. For the other phases, you can saute, bake, steam, or grill them. You don’t need oil/fat to do that.

  74. I’m starting the FMD on Monday, but I was wondering if I should be eating certain foods the weekend before that could help prepare for day 1.

    • Many of Haylie’s clients have thyroid issues and have done the diet successfully. Haylie stresses that you should stay in touch with your doctor; often, her clients taking thyroid medications need to have their dosages adjusted as they lose weight and become healthier.

  75. Hi Christine,
    I’m 30 years old 5ft2 61kg ,I just finished the 28 days. I’m a bit disappointed and discouraged went on the scale this morning,I’ve lost only 2kgs (4lbs) in a month. I need to loose an extra 10kg (20lbs).is it normal?? Should I give up.maybe the program is not for me

    • Hi Sarah. Have you had your lab work done? That is the first thing Haylie would suggest. Knowing your body chemistry can give you some insights into whether you’re dealing with a hormone imbalance, something that can certainly affect weight loss. Now that you have 20 pounds to lose, you can also drop down to the standard portion (assuming you were using the 1 1/2 portions for those who want to lose more than 20). Did you notice that you tend to lose more weight in one phase? For many, that’s Phase 2. You could consider extending Phase 2 — so two days of P1, three of P2, and two of P3. Those are some thoughts for you.

    • Hi Alesen. Probably little or no weight loss if you ate larger portions but didn’t have a lot of weight to lose. Or, you might lose, but more slowly. But it depends — if you are an athlete or something, you might need the extra portions.

      • Thank you for ansering… I am just a bit confused by what seems to be double messages..first, eat more loose more yet we need to limit our potions. Also the message that we wont have to starve ourselves. “The less you eat the more your metabolism cools” however typically before this diet I would eat more than the meal plans perscribe. When i eat the three meals and two snacks and they arent filling so I feel hungry… not sure how to handle these contradictions….do I go hungry or eat more? Confused….

        • Hi again. I understand your confusion, certainly. The FMD is about eating the right foods. When Haylie talks about eating more, she is mainly talking about unlimited vegetables, in addition to the set portions for protein, grain, fats. You can always eat veggies — and in any form: raw, cooked, in a soup or stew, etc. For example, you could make a vegetable stew with butternut squash, kale, and any other phase-specific vegetables and eat that anytime — even between meals. On P1 and P3, you can make yourself a baked sweet potato and sprinkle with cinnamon — another great anytime snack. So stick to the portions for protein/grains/fats/fruit, but eat as many vegetables, in any form you like, as you can.

  76. Hi. Just need some advice. I am cleaning out my cupboards and checking all labels. I am finding alot of canned beans, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes and Worcestershire sauce all contain sugar. #1. I assume I have to get rid of all these and start over but just wanted confirmation before heading to the food bank. #2 Also there are a few cans from sprouts that contain limited ingredients (tomatoes, sea salt) but also contain calcium chloride and beans that have calcium disodium ED1Z2V8W90YW80248310TA. Are these ingredients alright or should they go as well?
    I know other people have mentioned it would be nice if we had a master list to go off of and it has been said Haylie doesn’t have a preference. However just like the suggestion for braggs apple cider vinegar and aminos and the blog showing types of sprouted breads with pictures that show suggested brands, it would make life simpler if we weren’t constantly second guessing food choices and probably cut down on all the questions! Lol!! Thanks for your help. It’s always appreciated.

  77. Hi. Just need some advice. I am cleaning out my cupboards and checking all labels. I am finding alot of canned beans, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes and Worcestershire sauce all contain sugar. #1. I assume I have to get rid of all these and start over but just wanted confirmation before heading to the food bank. #2 Also there are a few cans from sprouts that contain limited ingredients (tomatoes, sea salt) but also contain calcium chloride and beans that have calcium disodium EDTA. Are these ingredients alright or should they go as well?
    I know other people have mentioned it would be nice if we had a master list to go off of and it has been said Haylie doesn’t have a preference. However just like the suggestion for braggs apple cider vinegar and aminos and the blog showing types of sprouted breads with pictures that show suggested brands, it would make life simpler if we weren’t constantly second guessing food choices and probably cut down on all the questions! Lol!! Thanks for your help. It’s always appreciated.

    • So frustrating. I have noticed this varies regionally — it’s hard to find national brands that are consistent and inexpensive. Here where I live on the east coast, very few store-brand beans contain added sugar, but when I visit family in the midwest, almost ALL have added sugar. Disodium EDTA is controversial. Haylie hasn’t mentioned it specifically, but avoiding chemical ingredients whenever possible is a good idea. Trader Joe’s beans, if you have access to a Trader Joe’s, have good beans — no chemicals or sugar, no BPA in the cans, and inexpensive. If your store has Goya brand, most of those are fine. I think only the dark-red kidney beans have added sugar. Whole Foods beans are fine, with no chemicals or sugar. Brad’s Organic beans are great, but they’re expensive. Same with Amy’s Organics.

  78. I bought a carton of egg whites so I am confused on the standard portion size for phase 2. Some places say 3 eggs white and on this site it says 4. So how do I calculate that for the liquid egg whites portion?

    • For phase 2, the standard portion on Phase 2 is three egg whites. If you are using liquid whites, check the package and use the equivalent of 3 egg whites.

  79. Hi Christine,
    I live in Mexico and I’m just starting the FMD. I have a couple of questions, though:
    1. Since we do not have access to the Fast Metabolism Powders here, is it ok to use Sunwarrior classic raw vegan protein in any of the three phases? It is a whole grain brown rice proteine powder which provides 4g of carbs per serving.
    And 2. Is it ok to use Silk unsweetened coconut milk in Phase 3? If so, what would be the portion size, and would it substitute the fat portion in that specific meal/snack? Thanks a million for your help!

    • Hi Vicky. Haylie has not recommended or endorsed any protein powders. She tells us that the quality of the ingredients varies so much from brand to brand that she doesn’t feel good endorsing any of them. As for the coconut milk, it looks fine for P3. If you use a small amount here and there (maybe 1/2 cup), you don’t really need to count it as a requirement. If you use more than a cup, be sure to count it as a portion of your healthy fat.

  80. I just started on the diet and while the food is tasty and there is enough of it I have had a headache and diahrrea both days. I have been eating a diet similar to “phase 3″ with fewer carbs so didn’t expect any difficulties. Any ideas?

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