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Blog Nutrition Diets Dr Nowzaradan Diet: Is It Worth Trying?

Dr Nowzaradan Diet: Is It Worth Trying?

dr nowzaradan diet plan before surgery

Who Is Dr. Nowzaradan?

Dr. Nowzaradan diet was developed by Dr. Younan Nowzaradan – a well-known bariatric surgeon, who quickly became a household name when he managed to turn around the lives of numerous morbidly obese people on the highly popular TV show, My 600-pound life. His groundbreaking dietary approach has been on everyone’s lips for quite a while now. He is one of the few surgeons who perform operations on extremely obese people, and his diet is made specifically for preoperative weight loss (2).


The goal of Dr. Nowzaradan’s diet is twofold: first – actual weight loss before an operation, as it unequivocally reduces the underlying risks, possible side-effects and grave complications, and second – commitment test for the people who are adamant about following through with the second step and going under knife. The operation is never enough for a solid long-term weight loss. Afterwards, patients have to make drastic changes in their daily diet and eating practices for the operation to be successful. A continuous healthy lifestyle is the only way to obtain desired body looks.

dr nowzaradan diet benefits

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Dr Nowzaradan diet

What Is Dr. Nowzaradan’s Diet Plan?

This strict diet plan is essentially a mix of high-protein, low-fat, low-calorie, low-carb products. Patients are permitted to eat around 1200 calories per day, which is a far cry from the recommended amount of an average daily calorie intake and at first glance, this eating pattern seems completely unfeasible and unsustainable. However, Dr. Nowzaradan’s diet claims to be a healthy way of shedding pounds, while maintaining low-calorie intake by not excluding any food group except sugar. Also, you can’t simply throw caution in the wind and get below 1200 calories on Dr. Nowzaradan’s diet if you wish to fast-track the results, as a lower amount of calories does not supply your body with essential vitamins and energy-providing macronutrients.  


Which Foods Are Not Allowed On Dr. Nowzaradan’s Diet?

While on this diet, you shouldn’t consume the following:

  • Any kind of sugar, sweets, and pastries
  • Packaged snacks (potato chips, crackers)
  • High-calorie nuts and seeds (peanuts, popcorn, almonds, pistachios, cashews, sunflower seeds)
  • Fried foods such as French fries
  • Fruit juice and high-sugar fruits
  • Sodas and energy drinks
  • Packaged muesli and granola

Overall, food limitations on Dr. Nowzaradan’s diet are reasonable. Fruits with low sugar and low glycemic index are effective in assisting weight loss (3), while junk foods and other high-calorie products have a reverse effect. 

Read More: The Fundamentals of a Balanced Diet: Foods, Benefits, Weight Loss

Dr Nowzaradan diet

Which Foods To Consume On Dr. Nowzaradan’s Diet?

  • Vegetables (spinach, carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, green beans, celery, and others as long as they are low-calorie and non-starchy. 
  • Low-sugar fruits such as berries, grapefruit, honeydew melon, oranges.
  • Whole grains.
  • Low-fat and no-fat dairy.
  • Fish, seeds and nuts, with exception of aforementioned ones. Avoid processed and red meat and use vegetable oils in moderation.

Dr Nowzaradan diet


To sum up, Dr. Nowzaradan’s diet is a way for people who are chronically obese to lose weight without spinning out of control and putting their health in jeopardy. Its benefits include the effectiveness and inclusion of all nutrients required for proper body functioning. The foods this diet recommends are indispensable for weight loss. Non-starchy vegetables are low in carbs, benefitting people with diabetes (4), and low in calories, allowing you to eat more and gain nothing. Rich in fiber whole grains are also more filling while associated with losing weight and lower risks of obesity (5, 1). If you are not severely obese, Dr. Nowzaradan’s diet without 1200 calories-norm may be simply used as a guide for a balanced daily menu.



This article is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional advice or help and should not be relied on to make decisions of any kind. A licensed physician should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Any action you take upon the information presented in this article is strictly at your own risk and responsibility!


  1. Consumption of cereal fiber, mixtures of whole grains and bran, and whole grains and risk reduction in type 2 diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular disease. (2013, ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)
  2. Doctor Now MD (n.d., drnowmd.com)
  3. Effect of the glycemic index of the diet on weight loss, modulation of satiety, inflammation, and other metabolic risk factors: a randomized controlled trial. (2014, ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)
  4. The prevention and control the type-2 diabetes by changing lifestyle and dietary pattern (2014, ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)
  5. Whole-grain intake as a marker of healthy body weight and adiposity (2008, ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)
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  • Everything is very open with a very clear explanation of the challenges. It was really informative. Your website is very useful. Many thanks for sharing.

  • Can you please e mail me a copy of your diet I need to lose 150lbs. I stand 5’0″ and weight 275 please if you can help me I would be very grateful.

  • Hi my name is Gail and I am at 395 lbs, 5ft 6in, 58 years old I battles chronic asthma 120 mg of steroids a day struggle with my sugar which is been 302 I’m a chronic pain at them even after having back surgery in 2017 I need to new replacement and possible hip replacement. What address we need Help To Lose Weight if you know the 600 cal diet please share it with me

  • Hello my name is angele I am 50 yrs of age female. I am on a hormone replacement due to a hysterectomy. I’m currently 180 lbs and 5″5.. I have been on a 900 low calorie and low carb diet firc2 weeks with some exercise. I would like to lose 40lbs in 2 months..I’m a fan of doctor now. Am I doing it right.

  • Hi my name Jason and I am just over 500lb. I need help advice and support. I really need some help.

  • I would love a copy of Dr. Now’s diet plan. This show is an inspiration to me. I have lost 75 lbs. & I have 20 lbs. more to go to reach my goal. I have watched each episode at least 3 times. Thank you, Dr. Now & TLC for keeping this show. I feel like it has helped a lot of people!

  • May I have the diet emailed to me? I weigh 220 and stand 5’1. I have tried such to lose weight. And it keeps coming and not going.

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