How Safe Is The Cambridge Diet For Weight Loss?

The Cambridge diet induces rapid weight loss through ketosis

While some call this a fad diet, some swear by it. No matter what the popular opinion, the Cambridge diet has been doing the rounds for weight loss in the US since 1980! A long life might not necessarily mean good quality – so is the Cambridge diet the best bet for your weight loss?

What Is The Cambridge Diet?

The Cambridge diet plan works by regulating your calorie and carb intake.


The weight plan uses low-calorie products such as shakes, soups, bars, and porridge to induce rapid weight loss

Although developed in Cambridge University, UK, in the 1970s, the Cambridge Weight Plan (CWP) has had a good many followers in the US since it was introduced as a commercial product. The diet involves replacing your regular food with a range of CWP food products.


Depending on your body type and your goal, the program offers 6 diet plans. These plans start by depending solely on the products for nutrition and, finally, give a low-calorie diet plan that uses the replacements only when necessary. Here’s what the diet sketch looks like in the CWP:

  1. You start by getting all the nutrients from 3–4 CWP products every day.
  2. You then mix the products and a meal to make up 800 kcal a day.
  3. You mix 2 products, milk, a salad, and a breakfast to make up 1000 kcal a day.
  4. You mix 2 products, meals, and milk to make up 1200 kcal a day.
  5. You mix 1 product with meals and milk to make up 1500kcal a day.
  6. Finally, you work on long-term weight management and regulate your food intake. The approximate calorie intake here is 1500 and above as per your requirement.

Since this diet involves very-low-calorie food intake and the use of particular products, it has to be done under the guidance of a Cambridge diet counselor.


How Does The Cambridge Diet Work?

Through ketosis, the Cambridge diet plan burns fat and reduces weight.

The diet plan depends on the process of ketosis. In a keto diet plan, the body lacks the right amount of calories and carbohydrates required for it to function properly. Because of this, the body instead depends on and burns body fat.


How Effective Is The Cambridge Diet Plan?

The Cambridge plan might help with instant weight loss but not with long-term management.

Most studies have found only suboptimal results from most commercial weight loss programs such as the Cambridge Weight Plan.1 However, this particular diet has been seen to help obese people kickstart with instant and dramatic weight loss.


Like with all diet plans, the Cambridge plan also has its disadvantages:

  1. The diet might help you kickstart a short-term weight loss, but it cannot help in the long term.
  2. Most studies observing this plan has found it to be effective in just obese people.
  3. The recommended calorie intake a day is about 2500 kcal for men and 2000 kcal for women.2 In this diet, you get much lesser calories than this. Inducing a state of ketosis this way might burn not just fat but also muscle mass.
  4. The meals plans are difficult to follow for most as they cost anywhere between $60 and $90. Approximately, 1 meal will cost $3.
  5. It has side effects such as hair loss, bad breath, nausea, insomnia, diarrhea, and faintness.
  6. Any rapid weight loss with food restriction can lead to loss of vital nutrients and cause diseases.
  7. It might not work out for people who are lactose intolerant as the diet makes use of dairy products.

Is The Diet Safe For You?

The Cambridge diet plan might help obese people start their weight loss goal with instant weight loss.


Overall, the Cambridge diet plan might be a good option for you if you’re morbidly obese but fit and fine in every other way with no health conditions. This might help you start your weight-loss regime and motivate you to continue with immediate weight loss. However, weight management is a lifelong goal and needs long-term management, which no set plan can provide. Find your own healthy way to lose weight and stay fit with healthy foods and lifestyle.