Body For Life (Eating For Life)

 By Mizpah Matus B.Hlth.Sc(Hons)

body-for-lifeBill Phillips’ Body for Life is an inspiring book that outlines a comprehensive diet and fitness program. The book continues to be a top seller worldwide, and has sparked a number of copy-cat programs.

Body for life is about losing fat and gaining muscle – and having a diet that doesn’t leave you feeling tired or fatigued.

The author Bill Phillips is inspired, passionate, motivational, and sincere regarding the program. He has recently added a new book Eating for Life – this primarily focuses on nutrition. This book has the basics of the Body for Life program along with a full color glossy cookbook full of meals and recipes that will fit the Body-for-Life style.

Body For Life Basics

The typical BFL diet consists of 5-6 meals per day. Portion size is emphasized rather than calorie counts. A typical meal might consist of one portion of protein, and one portion of carbohydrate. For one day each week you are allowed to ‘cheat’ and eat your favorite foods. The book provides lists of foods and sample meal plans – but you will need to plan carefully to follow the diet.

The exercise program is essential to Body for Life. This includes 20 minutes 3 times per week of aerobic exercise, and lifting weights for 3 times a week (45 minutes per session).

Click here to purchase this diet for a discounted price.

Click here to purchase this diet for a discounted price.

Transformation Possible?

Bill Phillips has brought different elements together and combined them into a single program. He has delivered these in a truly inspiring and motivational fashion. Body for Life has been the catalyst for thousands of people to finally get fit and healthy, and there is always a Body for Life challenge going on somewhere in the world.

Recommended Program

The Body for Life program is sensible in all aspects. It is not a very low calorie plan, and has a substantial exercise component. Yes you will need to restructure your life to follow this (maybe that’s why its called Body for Life!). You will need to have considerable motivation to succeed, be prepared to work hard, and fat loss would be in the region of 1-2 pounds per week (if you are currently overweight).

Despite the book being adorned with before and after photos of people becoming muscular, it takes a lot of discipline to not only lose fat but to build defined muscle mass.

These exercises can be used with the Body for Life program.


Following the diet (6 meals per day) can be difficult, and the author suggests (plugs?) supplements. This is not surprising as Bill Phillips was once the owner of EAS supplements (he subsequently sold the company on). EAS is reputed to be one of the superior supplement makers in the industry.

Protein shakes (such as Myoplex) certainly have their place (particularly in a regime with 3-6 meals per day). Shakes, bars, and Ready-to-Drinks are a convenient way to supply your body with the nutrients – but are never a replacement for real food.

Sample Meal Plan

This is a typical 1,700 calorie meal plan from the Eating For Life program.


3/4 cup scrambled Egg Beaters™

1 piece multi-grain toast with 1teaspoon natural peanut butter

1 small apple

1 small banana


Myoplex Lite Ready-to-Drink


2 ounces of fresh deli cut turkey breast

1 tablespoon regular mayonnaise

2 slices of multi-grain bread

1 cup fresh baby carrots

1/2 cup low-fat cottage cheese


Myoplex Lite Nutrition Bar


1 medium roasted, skinless chicken breast

1 cup lentil soup

2 celery sticks with non-fat cream cheese

More low Calorie healthy recipes can be found here.

See Also

Official site – The official site for Body-for-life products.


Body for life is similar to – The Abs Diet, Burn the Fat – Feed the Muscle, and the 3 hour diet.

 By Mizpah Matus B.Hlth.Sc(Hons)
  • mike

    I am a 54 year old male who is 6’1” and weighs 170 lbs. My weight has remained the same since high school as I have been running 5 days a week and lifting free weights 2 times a week for 35 years. I did Body For Life at age,46,50 and am now again into it for the last seven weeks. It is the best for the following reasons:
    1.the food plan does not allow you to feel deprived
    2.the exercise plan gives a set ritual to follow
    3.the cheat day( Sunday for me) allows for something to look forward to.Some Sundays I do not even indulge much as I just like the thought that I can
    4.the results… those little trouble areas ( for me it is the smooth stomach and slight love handles) will begin to melt by the 6th week or so.By the end of 12 weeks you are there!
    Go for it!

  • Kerri

    I am training for a half marathon and am looking for great diets where I don’t feel starved at the end of the day. Since I started training my stomach has felt like agony when it’s time to go to bed. When that happens I will hope out of bed and grab a glass of chocolate milk and a piece of toast. At 10 o’clock at night, I can assume this isn’t great for your daily calorie count. Not only am I training for the half marathon I still have 13 lbs to lose per Dr ‘s standards. Before I was an avid runner, I was an avid weightlifter, pushing weights three hours a day. Keep in mind I use to be 210lbs, because of having 4 kids. Now I’m at a comfortable 158, but it seems ever since getting hurt weightlifting it has been hard to get that last poundage off. Before I got hurt by lifting too much I was able to get down to 150. After I got hurt, I reached 177. I can’t seem to get pass 158 no matter how far I run in a day. 4,6,8, or 10 miles. One thing is for sure…that I’m starving at the end of the day. I was using the Women’s Health Magazine runners 6 week eating plan and its not enough. 1300 calories a day. So can some one please tell me if this is a good diet for long distance runners with minimum cross-training such as weightlifting?

  • Linda

    Bill,I’m a Chinese reader, and I do LOVE your book

  • Michele

    This is a delicious and healthy eating plan. Both my husband and I have lost weight – 15 and 6 pounds, we love the recipes and best of all we have more energy and no cravings!!

  • Ronel

    I am from South Africa and would like to know if there is a website for the Body for Life program for South-africans too?

  • Melissa

    ***correction for purists: you can actually eat more than one serving of low-carb vegetables! :)

  • Melissa

    I am doing BFL now, and I do LOVE it (already seeing results and feeling better). But the meal plan listed above is NOT BFL. You pick ONE protein, ONE carb, and ONE vegetable for two meals, and ONE protein and ONE carb for the rest. No mayo or extra fats are recommended. The meal plan above is just so far off base, it’s not even recognizable as Body For Life. Where did they get it?

    • Kay

      Agreed! I started doing body for life in 2000 and have stayed on it (sometimes more than others) over the years because it keeps me fit and trim and I can tell you that the breakfast above has 3 carb portions NO WAY and mayo for lunch -WHAT? 1/2 cup cottage cheese is one portion of protein so no way that AND the turkey also, 2 slices of bread also pushing it-snacks are a shake and nutrition bar on the same day not recommended and dinner may be okay but doesn’t look very appetizing. Where did this come from? Not from the book.

  • Sharon

    I followed this program in the lead up to my 40th birthday and I lost 20 pounds, but more important, I looked as strong and as fit as a 20 year old. I got CARDED at the bar in Vegas when we went to celebrate (I chose my birthday as my free day!). The free day makes the rest of the week so easy to do. I could sit at Friday’s with my kids and husband while they chowed and say “on my free day, I am going to have a pile of that!” and be perfectly satisfied. Turns out, you really can’t do that much damage on free day, because you get full FAST! I highly recommend this and am, in fact, starting my next 12 week challenge on Sunday (I like a Saturday free day over the recommended Sunday free day, just a personal preference). Good luck!!!

  • marc

    My wife and I did this program 10 years ago with amazing results. I lost 32lbs of fat, and gained 8lbs of muscle. We both felt great,and got in the best shape of our lives. I still use the basics of the plan today @ 50yrs old, and have a 6 pack to show for it. I believe it to be the best common sense fitness plan, and plan to follow its guidelines FOR-LIFE!

  • stan

    read body for life.looking for tips or suggestions on healthier eating.

  • Melanie

    My caretaker and I are on the eating for life diet program and we were talking about what liquids we can drink, as she said it didn’t say anything in the book about that except for the nutriontion shakes. So are we allowed to drink coffee, or iced tea, or crystal light,and what about water????

  • Gerhard

    Body for life WORKS!!!

  • Yolanda

    If you enjoy eating different foods, the program is even more enjoyable. When I started, the exciting part was doing groceries! I’ve been on it for the past 8 years. I don’t follow it strictly anymore but I’ve maintained its principles and therefore the same level of fitness and weight in all this time (and have had a baby too). Remember that food contributes a larger percentage in maintaining a good body, than exercise alone.

  • lucinda

    i have done body for life and it really works! i am trying to get motivated to get back into it after having 2 kids and being out of shape– you do have to have dicipline but it works!

  • Kamilla

    One more comment: You need to be in a state of mind where you can discipline yourself to eat several small meals a day. As for many people obesity is connected to psychological difficulties or trauma that lead them to self-medicate with food, this part of the program needs to be approached with caution. However, even if you are not able to adhere completely to the diet at first, learning to do the exercise program will bring results, and this will help motivate you to follow that diet more faithfully.

  • Kamilla

    The first time I tried this I couldn’t follow the diet better than about 75%, still I lost 15 pounds in the first two weeks. This is a superb program for those of us who have never done any weight training, the benefits of which become apparent very rapidly. It’s not a program for seasoned bodybuilders, but for people who want to make a change from an unhealthy lifestyle.

  • JL

    This diet really transformed my body for the better. However, looking back, I wouldn’t drink the protein shakes. Anything like that, or that you buy at GNC is just a glass-full of chemicals. Stick to whole foods.

  • Lyndene

    Hi, I have just started the 12 week program and so far so good. Coming from South Africa not all of our food is the same as yours. I would like to know if there is a list of foods I get get over here to follow.

  • MARY

    i need a 6 meal a day recipe

  • Brenda

    If you do not work out as hard as they want you too in the book will you still lose weight?

  • dawn


  • lisa

    This diet is great! I use it a few years ago and had great results and gained confidence and a love for exercising. I went from 187 to 145 and was incredibly fit, I even had a six pack!! The only problem was that I enjoyed exercising so much that I became a little obsessed with it and all of the benefits with this program stopped and I was unable to lose more and that made me quit altogether. If you follow his plan you only exercise about 45 minutes a day and that is ALL YOU NEED! The food is great because its not processed, you can get creative with it and you start to enjoy whole grains and lean meats as well as veggies, and even crave them! Another good note is that you get a free day once a week.

  • Jess

    I am on my 11th week and have never felt so amazing in my whole entire life. At 5ft 9in I was 148 to start and am now 140 and am developing a 6 pack abs for the first time ever. People tell me I look elegant, slender and graceful and can now actually do press ups. My clothes are all hanging off me, and I don’t feel guilty when I eat now like before – always, no matter whether it was healthy or not. Plus I know I am getting the optimum nutritional balance of everything without having to work it all out. On cheat days, I really cheat – I look forward to hand made chocolate truffles all week and know it’s allowed… but back on the plan, I know, with confidence, that what I am eating will contribute to my healthier and sexier body! I get up at 5am everyday with my boyfriend and we do the body for life together – then we sit and eat at the dinner table three times a day and have stability, know exactly where the next meal is coming from and look forward to our lives together as people in control of our bodies! Please give it a go…

  • Edvaldo Da Silva

    pessoal.gostaria de saber se alguem pode me falar se da pra ficar com 8% de gordura utilizando o programa body for life.thank you

  • neva mcgregir

    hey i was wondering where can you buy the vanilla protein powder? please e-mail me back and tell me.
    thankyou very much
    Neva McGregor

    • ted

      Did you click on the links to shopzilla? You should be able to order it from a supplier there.

  • Tiffine

    I totally agree! I have lost 38 pounds on this diet. It is great. After awhile you get a little tired of the food like always, but it is well worth it…

  • Reese

    I loved this program! It made me feel so good and healthy. It took planning since there were 5 – 6 meals per day but well worth the effort. I received compliments from both men and women because I looked so fit (not skinny). The greatest part was having 1 “cheat” day a week. However, you must stay strict on the other 6 days or it doesn’t work. There is also a book called Eating for Life filled with great recipes.

  • Julie

    This is the only thing out there that will actually work if you are trying to lose weight. I was a depressed, tired mom that was 5’1″ and weighing in at 170lbs. I was squeezing into size 14’s and completely mortified when one of my husbands employees asked who was the woman in our wedding picture! It was me before 3 kids destroyed my body….I read body for life and followed the food plan, which is not a diet, i ate more that I ever did. I also used weights in my home and walked a trail with my double stroller everyday, Only 4 months later I weighed in at 115 lbs and was wearing a size 5. I am now 107lbs and I wear a size 1. This book is well worth it. I look better now than I did before I had my kids. SOOOOO Worth It.

    • Cathy


      Is this true? I’m 5’0″, and have tried several “DIet Programs” with little success. Every “counselor tells me I’m “so short weight loss will be difficult”! That’s why I ask if this is true; I”m excited to get started just for the healthy part of the program, but if you really lost all the weight, too, I’m really looking forward to this change in my life :-)


  • Kay

    THIS WORKS!This is the most well balanced and logical lifestyle change (because it needs to be more than a diet to work). It will change your body. But more important is how you exercise with this eating. It is amazing, the results. Not a fast, but amazing transformation program. I highly recommend it.

    • K

      Just getting back on track after many stressful things now careing for father full time very hard to find time for workout as for the eating WOW amazing it’s like I was starving at first now must force myself to eat feel way more energetic now if only I could get out to a gym:) any home tips guys? Need strengthening tips for home?

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