British Heart Foundation Diet

The British Heart Foundation Dietis a poor fad diet that has been circulating for many years. Please note that the British Heart Foundation has nothing to do with this diet whatsoever.

The diet has circulated in the form of a one page sheet that claims you can lose 10 pounds in 3 days. The diet has been popular in the UK – but its exact origins are unknown.

British Heart Foundation Diet Plan

This diet is very low in calories and not recommended


5 ‘snax’ biscuits (dry crackers)
1 slice of cheddar cheese
1 small apple
1 cup black tea/coffee/water


1 boiled egg
1 slice of dry toast
1 cup black tea/coffee/water


1 cup of tuna
1 cup of beetroot
1 cup of cauliflower
1/2 melon
1/2 cup of diet vanilla ice-cream
1 cup black tea/coffee/water

The British Heart Foundation diet is a very low calorie diet (approx. 700 calories per day), and is often only used for a few days. It is unsustainable. The meal plan should not be undertaken for any length of time without medical supervision.

Very low calorie diets like The British Heart Foundation Diet do not lead to lasting weight loss and can be dangerous due to the low calories recommended. Any weight loss will likely rebound when normal eating is resumed.

Instead we recommend that dieters look for weight loss plans that encourage slow and steady weight loss, while emphasizing nutritious foods that fuel the body with the nutrients in needs and that promote overall good health.

The British Heart Foundation diet does not meet these guidelines.

 By Mizpah Matus B.Hlth.Sc(Hons)
  • Wadden, T. A., STUNKARD, A. J., & BROWNELL, K. D. (1983). Very low calorie diets: their efficacy, safety, and future. Annals of internal medicine, 99(5), 675-684. link
  • Saris, W. H. (2001). Very‐Low‐Calorie Diets and Sustained Weight Loss. Obesity Research, 9(S11), 295S-301S. link
  • Roberts, D. C. (2001). Quick weight loss: sorting fad from fact. Medical journal of Australia, 175(11/12), 637-640. link

203 Comments or Reviews

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  1. Kelly

    I heard all about this Diet today, Fingers crossed i keep this one up , 3 days out of 7 isnt bad !


  2. Ld

    You cant swap the grapefruit for the orange – the grapefruit is KEY to the diet!

    According to a study at the Scripps Clinic, participants who ate grapefruit before meals had considerably lower levels of insulin in their blood. Insulin promotes hunger, so lowering levels of insulin can help dieters control their hunger. The study further notes that a natural compound found in grapefruit may also be responsible for the weight loss.

  3. Rachel

    Hey everyone.
    It has been really inspiring to read your comments.
    I am going to give this diet a go tomorrow and try to get rid of some of the extra baggage before Christmas.
    Itd be really nice to feel slimmer and more healthy so that i can look my best for the festive season!!
    I currently weigh 9st 8lbs so lets see what happens… Watch this space!

  4. LuWat

    Hi I’m going to start this diet tomorrow. You can swap half a grapefruit for an orange, one piece of toast can be swapped for 5 saltine crackers, the tuna can be exchanged with a cup of cottage cheese, cauliflower and brocolli can be swapped and beetroot can be swapped with brocolli too.

  5. jackie

    ive started the diet today so far so good will let you no how uch ive lost after the 3 days

  6. lea

    i have done this diet for 8 weeks and only lost 6 pounds me and loads have friends have done this and sorry to say it doent work half as well as people think and your always hungry…..and i usally loose weight fast but this diet is rubbish

  7. Happy

    i have been just eating dinner for 5 days and have lost over half a stone!! you can eat anything you want for dinner as long as you dont eat too much 🙂 it really works i am currently 124 pounds and i want to be about 112 pounds. I tried this diet for 2 weeks before i went on holiday and lost 1 stone! i went on holiday for 3 weeks and ate junk, i only put on 5 pounds. If you excersise as well your metabollic rate will remain high which means you are less likely to put the weight back on! i recommend this diet. One down side is you feel hungry around lunch, if you do drink lots of water and eat a piece of fruit. If you feel tired drink pepsi. I have started doing this and have found it has not effected my results at all. Have fun! and wish me luck.

  8. emma

    ive started the cabbage soup diet today, which lasts for 7 days and then going to do this one any advice welcomed please 🙂 xx

  9. Giselle

    I’m starting the diet tomorrow!!! can’t wait too look good again! =)

  10. jenny

    I’ve found this diet brilliant. It really focussed my mind and knowing I am only doing it for 3 days at a time helped enormously. However I haven’t lost the 10lbs a week but have lost 20lbs in 6 weeks so hopefully this will stay off. At 63 with an underactive thyroid I have been struggling to lose any weight over the last 3 years or so despite going to the gym AND working out very hard 3 times a week! Still have a lot of weight to lose but intend to keep on with this diet while I feel ok. For all you younger people I would say lose the weight NOW I managed to lose 6 stone in 8 months – 1,000 calories a day diet – 20 years ago, kept it off for 3 years then it all came back and it is so hard to lose as you get older.

  11. martha simon

    ok i done this diet and trust me i was walking around hungry,,i stoped smoking and gained 20lb i think i lost 4 lb ,,but put it back on you really have to stick to it,,

  12. Dawn

    Hi all,i have just started Day one.Are we only allowed three cups of coffee a day ?Best of luck to everyone.

  13. lisa

    hi this is my last day of the diet, and already lost 3lb, i have done this diet before and always happy with the results, i will get on the scales tomorrow and let you know the final verdict.

  14. Nopha

    Hi, i have been straggling with weight since my teenage stage. It was only when i was at vasity when i met one lady who introduced me into this diet. I lost25kg within 3months. It took me a while before it came back. sco i am going to start tomorrow at 106kg

  15. Erica

    I started this diet yesterday and its not so bad.. but i cant understand why one must eat processed viennas.. they are quite bad for you?? But never the less a friend of mine lost 16kgs in 5 weeks!!!I think thats about 39 pounds. so anyway Wish me Luck!!!

  16. gina

    i’ve now finished my 3 days and i lost 4 lbs which i was very pleased with. hopefully it stays off as i weigh at slimming world 2moro.

  17. gina

    started diet today after my mum losing 7 lbs last week. i have lost 2 stone with slimming world but have reached a plato.
    found day 1 relatively easy ad have felt full.
    i dont eat meat so hoping that changing meat for cheese and changing tuna for an egg would be ok?? also dont like beetroot so had sweet potato instead.
    i would be happy if i lost 3-5lbs in the 3 days.
    i’ll let you know how i get on and would be happy to hear comments.

  18. Peeps

    on the 3rd day can I swop the breakfast & lunch around – its uch easier to take crackers & cheese to work

  19. Kitty

    Hi,want to start this diet. I need to loose about 2 stone.

    I am a vegetarian , so i don’t eat tuna, i don’t like beetroot, it makes me sick.
    And i can’t eat coliflower.

    Anyone know what i could eat instead of these ???

  20. MH

    This diet really works. After my first child was born I did the 3 day diet with a 10 day break, for 6 months and lost 12 kilos. doing it again now and hopefully in 6 months time will loose another 12 kilos. walk on the treadmill for 30minutes everyday at 6 KM/hr to help the diet work.

  21. Holly

    Hello, it took me over a year to get down from 13 1/2 stone down to just over 10. Now just over a year later im creeping back up to around 11 1/2 stone. All though i love my womanly curves. I want to get back to a baggy size 12 instead of a size 14. Gonna start this diet on Monday. Wish me luck everyone and keep posted!

  22. mia

    I am going on a diet starting today! wish me luck!
    who else is going on a diet? together it is more interesting, lets diet together! yeey!

  23. merry

    hii,im starting this diet soon and need advice ,should l get the sugar free ice cream or fat free(i uselly buy SF one).what about the crackers(any kind or what).and beetroot,calliflower should be raw or cooked the last question ,half melon !!!is that mean i should eat half of the whole melon,plzz hurryyyyyyyyy up,

  24. marian

    ive been on the diet for 4 weeks,only lost 6 pounds.

  25. Simon

    Started this morning, used dry normal crackers! hope thats right has could not find ‘snax’ biscuits. Its 11.45am and im starving and drank 2ltrs of water. Cant drink black tea either, will red top milk be ok? anyone suggest? Determined to loose weight though, any suggestions on exersise (not sole destroying gyms)20.5 stone to start with, we will see what happens Thursday…… wish me luck.

  26. lorna grant

    hi! looking for a diet that is easy to follow to go along with an exercise regime. I reckon I am about 3-3 1/2 stones overweight with most of the weight around my bust, midriff and lower abdomen. will keep you posted….anyone out there needind a diet buddy, get in touch!

  27. Karen

    I am going on holiday next week, so decided to give this a go just to lose a little bit extra. I am on day three! the diet isn’t too bad but I will be honest I have been hungry! I am not weighing myself until tommorrow so shall see what happens! good luck everyone!

  28. sarah

    done this diet before and lost 12 pounds, so going to do it again starting today with my best mate. i do slimming world other wise.

  29. jo

    im starting this diet on monday and cant wait to lose them extra pounds. good luck to anyone who is thinking of going on this diet.

  30. Meikie


    I`m going to start the 3 day diet on Monday but i`m still breastfeeding my 1 year 4 months baby.Can you please tell me or advise me if it is safe to engaged on the diet while breastfeeding.

  31. Estelle

    Lunch slice dry toast and one boiled egg, had plenty of water, and just having black coffee. its not so bad really!!!

  32. Estelle

    Hi all, well my sister sent me this diet, as she knows I am trying to give my weight loss programme a bit of a surge.
    I have started the diet today and intend to stick to it, I have done all the usual diets before and have always gone back to slimming world as my main eating plan as I find the group motivates me more. I have decided to do this one just to boost my on going weight loss as I have a holiday fast approaching and really need to lose as much as possible.

    I am going to be honest as I want to do this both for myself and for fellow dieters who have got stuck in a rut.

    I am 4 and a half stone over weight ouch!! and have already lost a stone in the last 6 weeks following slimming world but just need a bit of a quick weight loss to keep me enthusiastic and focused. If I deviate in any way will let you know, wish me luck!

    Starting weight: 16 stone 12.5lbs

    Day 1. breakfast: 5 ritz buiscuits with 2 tsp of peanut butter, one apple. one pint of water and one black coffee

    That wasn’t too bad so far so good

  33. ashley

    First Day –
    Breakfast – half Grapefruit, 1 slice toast, 2 tbls peanut butter, Black Tea / Coffee
    Lunch – 1 slice dry toast, 4 oz’s Tuna Fish, Black Tea / Coffee
    Dinner – 2 slices any Cold Meat, 1 cup String Beans, 4 oz’s Beetroot, 1 Small apple, 4 oz’s Vanilla Ice cream

    Second Day-
    Breakfast – Half Banana, 1 slice Dry Toast, 1 Poached Egg, Black Tea / Coffee
    Lunch – 5 Tuc Crackers, 4 oz’s Cottage Cheese
    Dinner – 2 Hot Dogs, 4 oz’s Broccoli, 2 oz’s Carrots, Half Banana, 4 oz’s Vanilla Ice Cream

    Third Day –
    Breakfast – 1 Small Apple, 6 Tuc Crackers, 1 Slice Cheddar Cheese, Black Tea / Coffee
    Lunch – 1 Hard Boiled Egg, 1 Slice dry Toast
    Dinner – 4 oz’s Tuna, 4 oz’s Beetroot, 4 oz’s Cauliflower, half Melon, 4 oz’s Vanilla Ice Cream

  34. rhian

    i just started on this today. i don’t usually eat breakfast but it’s 11am already and still satisfied. i always give up on diets, but knowing that it’s only 3 days is keeping me motivated! i really hope it works, i’ll come back in 3 days!

  35. cheryl

    Natasha good luck with it. I found day 1 was the fastest to lose weight. I am starting it tomorrow. It worked last time.

  36. Natasha

    I have to say i think you are all amazing. I’m going away for a couple of days and last night i could have just cried – nothing fits!!! But im going away tomorrow. So i am going to try this diet on Wednesday29 July – god wish me luck and i will keep you updated!!

  37. kate

    Hi i done this diet many years ago, and lost weight, but i did do quite a lot of exercise too, swimming and walking the dog.
    after the three days, i was just careful ‘how much i ate’ and i kept it off, even now if i have to loose a few pounds [or more] as i do battle with my weight-it works.

  38. claire

    hi all please help! i am starting this diet tommorow, i have been on it before, but could someone please send me the remaining diet, i remember green beans an chicken… i fell i would need variety and cant remember the other ingredients

  39. Amanda

    This diet works. I have done it on and off over the 14 years and it is a life saver. I have given this diet to so many people who’ve had excellent results.

  40. michele

    I have tried this diet several times and worked ever time just had a baby and going to give it a go again…I had a different meal plan for 3 days, did you follow the same meal plan as above for 3 days???

  41. heidi

    i went on this diet a few years ago with my mum and we did lose waight,but the above isnt the whole diet!where,s the rest of it?.

  42. joanna

    Well i’m going to start this diet first thing in the morning i hope it really does work, it looks like it works for everybody else on here so i’m gonna try
    keep you updated!

  43. Rachel

    I did this diet for the first time several years ago as an emergency & and desperate measure to fit into a bridesmaid dress. Does it work? Hell yes, I lost well over half a stone – and I kept it off. I’ve struggled to do it again with the same results, because it’s pure torture and i’ve not had the same ’emergency’ again. I would recommned you do it when you have a lot on so you can forget about meal times, not a good idea trying to do it at work if you sit at a desk. Also – I lost my weight at the end of the 3 days, not during.
    Good luck!

  44. cheryl

    I cheated i put whitener in my coffee. I just can’t drinkit black. I don’t like tuna but i have ate it just to follow the diet. Jenny i can’t believe you haven’t lost any weight yet. Let me know after day 3. If not my sheet says try again in 10 days. I drink alot of water as well. Today i am on day 1. I blew it last time so i am trying again. Good luck.

  45. jenny

    i am soo hungry and this is my last day of this diet!!! thank god! cottage cheese riz biscutes..yak! i had to force half of this food into my face whilst gagin! odd combinations of food i just cant wait to get a good sunday dinner! thing is with this diet im not massivly over weight iv been on the scales every day since the diet nd i havnt shed a pound i havent cheated at all ate everything in the right quantity no extras lots of water to fill me up in between meals! maybe iv been unlucky lets see what the scales say tomorrow!

  46. cheryl

    I lost 3 lbs in 1 day. I had to stop on day 2 because i drank to much water and got water poisioning. I got very sick. I only weigh 105 lbs but i want to lose 5. I am a very small person. My friend lost 7 lbs in 3 days. She was very happy. I think the diet is good because you can eat. Maybe it doesn’t seem like alot but it is more than i would normally eat in a day. Anyway i think it is a short but sweet diet and healthy.

  47. maz

    yeah you’re not drinking enough water lol

  48. Sam

    8.57 am. I am starting this diet today and am going to combine it with as much exercise as i can manage. Promise to log in regularly. Wish me luck!

  49. Heather

    I have be doing this diet on and off for 5 years it does work but you have to follow it to the letter no extras and you need to make sure you drink plenty of water. It depends how big you are in the first place to how much weight you lose, if you are like me and are not overweight but would just to lose a few pound to fit into your little black dress for a special night out then you are only likely to lose about 5lbs in three days but if you need to lose a stone or two then you should lose at least 10lbs friends of mine who have done it have lost anything from 5lbs to 14lbs in three days. I would not recommend this diet for long term weight lose as, as soon as you stop most of it goes back on but it is good for short term lose for getting into your bikini, or little black dress or wedding dress. I hope this helps. Good luck everyone.

  50. Jenni

    Hi I have found this diet works but then the scales show Ive put the weight back on, even with a healthy eating plan. However I need to excercise as well. Feel and look slimmer though but would welcome advise as to what to eat when your not on the 3 day diet. Also has anyone found it hurts their kidney area. Maybe I’m not drinking enough water.

Last Reviewed: March 21, 2018