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Information About the Five Factor Diet

If you are a serial dieter, the phrase, ‘5 factor diet’ should sound familiar. For those of you with mere passing interest, read on.

The ‘5 factor diet’ is a diet program contained in a book of the same title, written by celebrity fitness trainer Harley Pasternak.

Pasternak’s effort is big with celebrities, and many have sworn by it, including Alicia Keys, Mandy Moore, John Mayer, Eva Mendes among others.

On the other hand, sceptics have treated it like another Hollywood gimmick. Indeed, many experts are divided on the real value it achieves.

Who is Harley Pasternak

Harley Pasternak is a Canadian born fitness trainer, famous for his high-end clientele. He has graced various television shows giving expert information on fitness and nutrition, notably ‘the today show‘. His formal training in nutrition and physiological sciences sets him apart from many of his peers.

What does the 5 factor diet entail?

The five in ‘5 factor diet’ stands for the number of meals recommended each day of the program. Every meal should contain the five essential food nutrients: protein, complex carbohydrates, fat, fibre and fluids. In addition, the diet recommends recipes that contain a maximum of five ingredients, and take five minutes to prepare and five minutes to cook.

It also includes an exercise plan of five days which, you guessed right, comprises of five exercises of five minutes each. The plan also slips in a ‘cheat day’ each week when you can indulge.

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What’s the science behind the 5 factor diet?

The choices of meals recommended by the book are based on the Glycemic index (GI), which is a method of rating food based on its effect on blood sugar levels after eating, i.e. low GI foods release less insulin than high GI foods. The science behind this is that foods that can stabilize insulin levels help to control weight since there’s a direct correlation between appetite and insulin levels in blood.

The less amounts of insulin released during or after a meal, the less hungrier you are likely to feel. Based on this, food recipes in the five factor diet have a low GI rating. The plan includes over 100 recipes all conforming to the ‘five factor’ (five main ingredients and five minutes cooking time).

Does the five factor diet really work?

It really depends on who you ask. Although the science behind the ‘5 factor diet’ is factually true, not everyone agrees that insulin levels alone can control eating habits. The program aims at stemming appetite but does not address emotional and stress eating.

Furthermore, some scientists have argued that there’s no real new science behind the ‘5 factor diet’, claiming its nothing more than a ‘common sense’ guide to better, healthier eating choices and exercise.

Also, the obsession with ‘five everything’ makes the diet sound gimmicky. It’s almost unrealistic to stick to everything five, coupled with the five weeks within which to complete the program. This puts a real dent on the diet’s real value.

The book is available as hardcover copy for $17, or through online at its official website for $20 a month.

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