Stillman authored the book The Doctor's Quick Weight Loss Diet that first advertised the Stillman Diet in 1967. The diet includes lean beef, veal, chicken, turkey, fish, eggs and non-fat cottage cheese. Spices, tabasco sauce, herbs, salt, and pepper are also allowed. Condiments, butter, dressings and any kind of fat or oil are not permitted. Tea, coffee, and non-caloric soft drinks can be consumed, but only in addition to the 8 daily glasses of water required. It's also recommended that dieters eat 6 small meals per day instead of 3 large ones.
The diet is a carbohydrate restriction diet, similar to the Atkins Diet, although Stillman published his diet book 5 years before Atkins.
Karen Carpenter began using the diet in her teens. Karen was 5'4" and 145 pounds when she went on the Stillman Diet in 1967. She eventually abandoned the Stillman Diet and limited her caloric intake extremely. By September 1975, Karen's weight dropped to 91 pounds. In 1983 she died of complications related to anorexia nervosa.
It induces a degree of diuresis because of the low carbohydrate, but is a relatively unpalatable diet. Adherence to the diet induces fatigue, nausea and lassitude or exhaustion. Long-term use of this diet, because of its composition, may induce vitamin deficiency. Studies of individuals following the Stillman Diet have demonstrated quite conclusively that it raises the serum cholesterol, with its attendant risks.
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