Authors: Phil McGraw
Tags: #Health & Fitness, #Diet & Nutrition, #Diets, #Weight Loss
Also by Dr. Phil McGraw
Family First Workbook
The Ultimate Weight Solution
The Ultimate W
eight Solution Cookbook
The Ultimate Weight Solution Food Guide
Self Matters Companion
Relationship Rescue Workbook
Life Strategies Workbook
20 Key Foods to Help You
Succeed Where Other Diets Fail
Dr. Phil McGraw
Copyright © 2014 by Phillip C. McGraw
All rights reserved. No portion of this book may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means—electronic, mechanical, photocopy, recording, scanning or other—except for brief quotations in critical reviews or articles, without the prior written permission from the Publisher.
Published in Los Angeles, California, by Bird Street Books, Inc.
ISBN: Print 978-1-939457-31-8
er Design: Longerday.com
Interior Design: Stuart Smith
Interior Production: Dovetail Publishing Services
I dedicate this book to all the people who have had a lifetime
ticket on the weight loss rollercoaster but never give up trying
to get in shape and return to health. My sincere wish is that
you will use this plan to fina
lly free yourself from your weight
burden and start living the life you truly deserve.
Note to Readers
The anecdotes in this book are used to illustrate common issues and problems that I have encountered and do not necessarily portray specific people or situa-tions. No real names have been used.
As with all books, this one contains opinions and ideas of the author. It is intended to provide helpful and informative material on the subjects addressed in the publication. It is sold with the understanding that the author and publisher are not engaged in rendering medica
l, health, psychological, or any other
kind of personal professional services or therapy in the book. The reader should consult his or her medical, health, psychological, or other competent professional before adopting any of the concepts in this book or drawing inferences from it. The content of this book, by its very nature, is general, whereas each reader’s situation is unique. Therefore, as with all books of this nature, the purpose is to provide general information rather than address individual situa-tions, which books by their very nature cannot do.
The author and publisher specifically disclaim all responsibility for any liability, loss, or ri
sk, personal or otherwise, which is incurred as a conse-
quence, directly or indirectly, of the use and application of any of the contents of this book.
First, I want to thank my beautiful wife, Robin. For 40 ye
ars I have
witnessed you living every day with such passion for health and
well-being. Leading by example, you inspire not only me, but also
anyone in your pathway, to live healthfully and be better people.
I thank our sons, Jay and Jordan. You give your parents powerful
reasons to take care of ourselves, and inspire us by your own pursuit
Thanks to Cynthia Sass, M.P.H, R.
D, whose nutritional expertise
is evident in all of the meals and menus in this book. Her tireless
work creating just the right balance of nutrients was invaluable. And I
know readers will appreciate her formal culinary training because her
detailed attention to taste makes the meals within these pages truly
come to life on their plates.
Thanks to Maggie Greenwood-Robinson, Ph.D., for once again
lending your nutrition, exercise, and superb research skills to this
project. You alway
s raise the bar on content and I appreciate your
contributions to this book.
I acknowledge my friend and colleague G. Frank Lawlis, Ph.D.,
A.B.P.P., a fellow of the American Psychological Association and
chairman of the advisory board for the
show. Thanks for all the wisdom you have imparted and for being there for me both per-sonall
y and professionally for nearly 40 years including your counsel
in the science of health management.
Carla Pennington, thank you for being at the helm of the
show team. I appreciate your daily commitment to excellence as we
work with so many deserving individuals and families. Thank you, in
viii | The 20/20 Diet
specific, for your input on this book and creating so ma
moments about health on the show.
And I extend a very special thanks to my good friend and colleague,
Joey Carson, as well as the entire team at Bird Street Books, especially Lisa Clark for her patience and tireless efforts on this project over the last two years. Lisa, you were the absolute key to making this book a
reality. You were a relentless researche
r, editor, planner, organizer, and
“cleaner upper.” Thank you for your role in creating a responsible data-
To Oprah Winfrey, my dear friend, thank you for creating the
opportunity and platform for Dr. Phil. My family and I will always
be grateful for you.
Acknowledgments | ix
PART 1: Fundamentals of the 20/20 Diet
1 What Makes This Diet Different
2 A Diet That Defies Y
PART 2: Prepping for Success
3 Getting Out of Your Own Way
4 Set the Right Goal
5 Extinguish Your Fake Hunger
tock Up on Your 20/20 Foods
PART 3: The Three Phases of the 20/20 Diet
7 Phase 1: The 5-Day Boost
8 Phase 2: The 5-Day Sustain
9 Phase 3: The 20-Day Attain
PART 4: Your Body’s Capacity for Change
10 The 30-Second Burn Burst Exercise Program 129
11 When Your Body Won’t Follow Your Mind:
Are You Resistant to W
PART 5: Protecting Your Weight Loss for a Lifetime
12 Maintaining Your Success:
The Management Phase
13 Your Return to Health
14 Conclusion: The New You
ppendix A | Grocery Lists
Appendix B | Phase 3 Meals: The 20-Day Attain 191
Appendix C | The Management Phase:
Foods and Portions
Contents | xi
You create the results in life that you believe you deserv
—Dr. Phil McGraw
I’m betting if you honored me by acquiring this book, you already
know enough about me to realize that I am going to tell you the
unvarnished truth, at least as I see it, whether it is what you
to hear or not. If that’s your thinking, then you’re right. The way I see it is if you spend your time and mone
y with me, then I owe you nothing
less than the truth you
to hear in order to get what you want.
There is an old saying: “BS the fans,
the players!” I want to be on your team here. I want you to be a player—a smart, savvy player—
and I want to play this “weight game” with you. I want to help you
. So here we go! Let’s do this right, lose the weight consistently and in a healthy manner, and learn diet strategies to last a
When it comes to your weight and health, I see that you have
1. You can c
hoose to be in denial about your weight problem.
2. You can choose to fall for another “eat what you want and still
get thin” lie.
3. You can choose to lose weight in a healthy manner with diet
strategies that you can use for the rest of your life.
If you chose the last option, I wrote this book for you. I want to
help you transform your body, your
, your lifestyle, your priorities, and your self-worth, all in one fell swoop. To neglect
part of that list is to set you up for failure.
But you have to be honest with yourself
, right from the beginning. You may just be going through the motions here,
like you want to and will lose weight, but in truth, in that most honest part of your psyche, you’re thinking, “I will never really lose weight.
I am a failure at this, but if I don’t at least act like I am trying, then I will feel like a complete pig loser!” Or you might be thinking, “Oh,
I’m just too far gone. Too late, Dr. Phil! I’m a lost cause!”
My own sister Deana told me last year that she was s
o fat that it
took two dogs to bark at her! She said when it was hot outside, people
were gathering on her shady side. As usual, she was masking her pain
with jokes. Funny, but not slimming. She is even bigger today than
she was last year. So, maybe three dogs now? (Ouch! She will make
me pay for that!)
My whole family has always struggled with weight. This time last
year, I had two nephews who each weighed close to 500 pounds. One of
them told me, “Uncle Phil, I’m dying a s
low death here. I am a recluse. I
have no life. I’m not living; I’m merely existing. I am a grown man, yet I have no social life, I haven’t been on a date in years, and I’m ashamed of myself every time I look in the mirror. I hide in shame and I am so lonely and discouraged that my days feel a week long. I go out late at night to get fast food and come back and eat it alone. It’s pathetic. I have to make my last stand right now or I know I will be dead in months. I can barely breathe. I am afraid, I am
afraid. I am to the point where I would rather be dead than live this way. I am ready to change this, real y ready.
Please help me an
d I promise I will not disappoint you or myself.”
I believed him, he
ready, and I did help. Because he needed
constant medical supervision while working to shed the extra pounds
(as any extreme weight loss should be done under the supervision of
a doctor), I sent him to a facility where he could focus full-time on
reclaiming his health. In the last year, he has lost over 200 pounds!
ealth has improved greatly; he has gotten off all his medications
for diabetes, hypertension, and so on. He has gone from not being
able to walk from one room to the next without great difficulty to
walking and jogging five miles a day out in the fresh air. He has
become an avid golfer and is dating a lovely young woman he met
while on his quest.
2 | The 20/20 Diet
His brother, on the other hand, did nothing different than what
got him to almost 500 pounds and guess what happened to him? Wait
for it . . . he got bigger. But, and this is a big but (no pun intended), inspired by his younger brother, he tells me
is ready now, and I know he means it. For the first time, he real y means it. His time has come.