Limbaugh confirmed to American Superstar Magazine that he’s using a diet from Quick Weight Loss Centers and eating about 1, 500 calories per day. On his Web site, the suddenly sylph-like Limbaugh describes his diet as “based on actual food that you buy at the grocery store, a couple supplements that they provide you.”
Limbaugh has professed ignorance as to how his diet works, despite numerous queries since he announced his weight loss plans in March.
"Folks, it's not that I won't tell you, it's just I can't, " he said in June. "It's too complicated. I mean putting the menu together is a jigsaw puzzle every day. It would take me 45 minutes every day to tell you what the diet plan is and answer all your questions about why it works."
Quick-fix diets often don’t work over the long haul, experts say. When dieters lose weight that quickly, the pounds tend to pile back on once they stop the starvation regimen.
And “sensible, ” from the standpoint of a registered dietitian, means losing a pound or two pounds per week.
Quick Weight Loss Centers’ Web site notes that the diet is “supplemented with proprietary weight loss aids.” The supplements most likely contain artificial ingredients, and can affect the body in a negative way, says certified nutritionist Christine Avanti, author of “Skinny Chicks Don’t Eat Salad.”
Avanti says taking appetite suppressants and carb blockers is not a healthy strategy for those trying to lose weight.
“It’s okay if you want to trick your body, but you need to ask yourself, are you a person who needs to buy these supplements every six weeks for the rest of your life, or do you want to heal your metabolism naturally by eating balanced meals and exercising?” she says.
"You can spend several thousand dollars on supplements, ” Merey says. “So over time it becomes very expensive.”
Also, over time, a very low calorie diet like the one Limbaugh’s on can actually backfire, Zanecosky says. Though results can be dramatic (on his Web site, Limbaugh writes about losing seven pounds in five days), the longterm bad news is that the metabolism slows to a crawl with calorie deprivation.
“Think of the body as a furnace that burns calories at a certain rate, ” Zanecosky says. “When you restrict calories, your body just resets itself and burns at a lower speed, so you can get by on fewer calories.” One way to stoke that metabolism is by exercise, she says.