Choose to Lose: The 7-Day Carb Cycle Solution

 By Mizpah Matus B.Hlth.Sc(Hons)

choose-to-lose-chris-powellChoose to Lose: The 7-Day Carb Cycle Solution is created by Chris Powell, known for his appearances on the television show “Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition”.

This program contradicts the information you may have heard about the need to avoid carbohydrates if you want to lose weight.

With Powell’s diet you are actually encouraged to consume carbs and shown how to use them to lose weight more effectively.

Choose to Lose Diet Basics

The basic concept of the eating plan involves cycling your intake of carbohydrates so that you have a high-carb diet one day and a low-carb day the next.

This tricks your body into maximizing fat loss, boosting metabolism and preventing weight loss plateaus.

On the high-carb days you must eat only high-carb meals and on the low-carb days you will stick with low-carb dishes.

The only exception is breakfast, which is always high-carb to ensure you get a great start each day.

On average, for effective weight loss, women will consume about 1200 calories on the low-carb days and 1500 calories on the high-carb days. Men should have about 1500 calories on low-carb days and 2000 on the high-carb days.

Each day with Choose to Lose you will consume five small meals, spaced about three hours apart. Additionally dieters are advised to drink a gallon of water each day.

If you like you can take a day off your diet on Sunday and eat anything you want for the entire day. Powell says this approach actually tends to produce the best results. Alternatively you may eat one cheat meal on each high carb day.

Although Choose to Lose reduces the chances of experiencing a diet plateau, it may eventually occur, so the book includes an additional technique designed to help you break any periods when your weight loss stops or slows down dramatically.

Chris Powell offers tips for dealing with triggers such as going to a restaurant or the movies, social gatherings and eating in the workplace. Also provided are guidelines for meal planning, recipes and a maintenance plan.

Recommended Foods

Egg whites, tuna, lean beef, turkey, chicken breast, nonfat Greek yogurt, low-fat cheese, protein powder, natural peanut butter, almond milk, whole grain bread, oatmeal, granola, brown rice, potatoes, berries, banana, tomato, onion, mushrooms, spinach, green beans, celery, avocado, salsa, Mrs. Dash seasoning, stevia, coffee, tea.

Sample Meal Plan

The following is an example of a Choose to Lose low-carb day.

BreakfastSmoothie made with 1 scoop protein powder, 1 cup berries and ½ cup almond milk
Morning Snack1 cup cottage cheese
½ cup chopped tomato
1/3 avocado, sliced
3 tablespoons salsa
Lunch3 oz canned tuna
3 cups spinach
1 tablespoon low-fat mayo
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
Lemon-pepper Mrs.Dash
Afternoon Snack3 oz cooked extra-lean ground turkey
1 chopped bell pepper
1 cup sliced mushrooms
1 cup spinach
2 oz grated low-fat mozzarella cheese
3 tablespoons marinara sauce
Dinner2 oz sliced cooked flank steak
2 cups steamed green beans
2 tablespoons sliced almonds
5 sprays of spray butter
Mrs. Dash seasoning

Exercise Recommendations

Choose to Lose: The 7-Day Carb Cycle Solution asks that six days a week you perform a thirty-minute “shredder” workout involving cardiovascular interval training, where you switch between low, moderate and high intensity aerobic exercise.

And on your low-carb days you will do a ten-minute “shaper” workout, which involves muscle -toning exercises.

There is an iPhone app from Chris Powell.

Vemma Bod•ē - Vemma Nutrition Company

Costs and Expenses

Choose to Lose: The 7-Day Carb Cycle Solution retails at $24.99.

Click here to purchase this diet for a discounted price.


  • Encourages consumption of a variety of healthy foods.
  • No need to completely eliminate any foods.
  • Cycling carbohydrates and calories keeps the metabolism high.
  • Low risk of dietary boredom.
  • Choose to Lose includes inspirational weight loss stories.
  • Maintenance guidelines are provided.


  • Necessary to monitor portion sizes.
  • Some dieters may regain weight when they stop cycling carbs.
  • Not suitable for dieters who prefer not to follow a structured meal plan.
  • There is a potential for an excessive intake of calories on “cheat days”.

Fast Results Possible

Carbohydrate and calorie cycling diets, such as the one outlined in Choose to Lose: The 7-Day Carb Cycle Solution, tend to produce relatively fast and effective weight loss, while boosting the metabolism for long-term results.

Choose to Lose involves a fairly regimented diet plan, however the inclusion of cheat meals and the alternating carbohydrate allowance, may make it easier for many dieters to stick with the program, thus enhancing the likelihood of successful outcomes.

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

    Think the info about what chronic dieting does to our metabolism is right on target. Decided to combine weight watchers with some aspects of carb cycling, notably 5 small meals/day with some protein at first three and last. So far cravings for in between snacks have stopped. Lost 3 pounds first week. Have been slightly sedentary with a walk once this week. We’ll see if its a fluke or finally the right combination.

    • Cathetine

      Hi! Was wondering how you are doing? I’m trying to get a grasp of this carb cycling idea! Thanks! Catherine

  • Keith McKenna

    Listen Guys I see allot of you moaning and groaning about not knowing what foods to eat It is very easy to discover what foods are high and low carb the internet is one it has everything we need to know at the tips of our fingers you just have to be able to focus and do some studying,I also see you moaning about having to eat different meals than your family the point is if you want to loose weight and be in shape you have to eat properly and strictly don’t worry about what others eat just think about how amazing you will feel when you are in the shape you desire,my opinion is nothing tastes as good as healthy in shape feels,best of luck guys…

  • andrea saffell

    I am frustrated. I understand what foods we can eat. I would just like for “meal” preperation suggestions. I need to find a food guide list as well. to broaden my selection. I go in and out with salads. I also feel I am a seasonal eater. at the beginning of Spring and into summer. I crave chicken breast and salads. and in the winter it is comfort food. hearty soups, stews, squash. and I love to bake. hummmm I am 320lbs. and I am 52. I need to get a little guidence. my arms go numb. my ears ring constantly. I even have symptoms like I am about to have a frickin stroke. and I am (as you can tell) depressed. broke and out of work. so…… it is up to me. I have lost most of my friends as well. they just don’t come around much when you are so negitive. some of them have gained enormous amounts of weight as well and make me feel as if I at fault. so it is just me. and I am going to try. I just wished to start. there was a little more of a road map to choose meals and foods.

    • Debbie

      if you do a search for “CHRIS POWELL” lookup his company “Vemma” there is a free 12 week tranformation website….ALL FREE.

      also if you hve a smart phone or a iPhone under apps look up his name and Vemma and theres a app for this wesite u can use for free right on your phone. Best of luck!

      • Gerri

        Thank you!

    • Ani


      I’m sorry to hear but I think that just wanting to change is an amazing start. Once you get on the rails it’s hard to get off and you’ll notice that after intense workouts like intervals, you’ll feel amazing and lessen symptoms of depression – and I’ve had plenty of those since I’m fresh out of a long-term relationship.
      Sure eating is important but working out is equally important!
      As for not having any money, you can do loads of workouts in the great outdoors and this is really highly recommended because of the many benefits of oxygen. I also bought a DVD and a pilates matt and do Pilates every morning before I start my day. This has really improved my posture and my overall mood because it’s a great mind/body exercise. Apart from that calorie deficit is important. If you have a smartphone, myfitnesspal is a great motivator and if you don’t the easiest way is to eat lots of veggies and lean protein and stay away from refined sugar as much as is humanly possible. Dairy is ok but in moderation and if you can, goats milk cheeses and low fat yoghurts are best.
      I’ve also been doing a bowl of oatmeal in the morning because it really fills me up and gives me good energy. Spring is just around the corner so there are lots of options for veggies but what’s important is that you practice portion control. You can eat all kinds of healthy foods but if you eat too much you won’t loose weight.
      There’s loads of information online about how to plan meals and you don’t necessarily need to buy a book to figure out how to eat.
      I’m new to carb cycling so I’m curious to see if it can help me lose my last few pounds. I’ve gone down at least 2 sizes in the last 1.5 months just from watching calories. It’s a pain in the bum but at least it teaches you loads about what foods are good and what foods to avoid.
      Another thing to consider, if you can handle it, is a macrobiotic diet. But it’s best if you live near a source of fresh fish.
      Good luck.

    • Sarah

      I agree with you 100%. I KNOW what foods I am supposed to be eating, but I have a family that I cook dinner for every night and I hate that I am always having to eat a different dinner than them! Also, I just don’t like vegetables at all so I find that when I am dieting I eat the same boring things all the time…..then say screw it and binge eat on junk. I get myself in this horrid cycle of depressed so eat, then mad that I ate, then eat more because I already ruined it, then the whole cycle starts over. It is so depressing. I, like you, have few friends and on top of that I am a stay at home mom on a budget so I don’t get out much and am around food all day!!! Frustrating to say the least.

      • amber wadsworth

        sara would you like a diet buddy from a far :) you sound like someone who would be a great partner from me if so I am on facebook 36 yr old stay at home mom with about 140 pounds to lose but I am motivated and I have done a ton of research. amber wadsworth moses lake Washington (if you wanna find me on facebook)

  • Pam Jackson

    Can you use regular table salt with this diet?

  • Ann Jenkins

    Can you substitute the cheese and yogurt if you done like this stuff??

  • Mary

    Are beans and split peas a low carb food or a high protein day food?

    • Evelyn

      split peas and beans are high- carb. (Although they happen to be high in protien as well)

  • gerry bacon

    I am 46 I weigh 145 pounds and am active just was told I have high cholestrol high Ldl and low hdl I am searching for recipes that r healthy and will help me lose weight and drop or raise the spots I am worried about do u have any ideas that can help

  • fallacy-of-a-calorie-cover Fallacy of a Calorie: Never Count Calories Again
  • the greek diet book Greek Diet
  • slim by design review Slim by Design
  • 5-skinny-habits-cover 5 Skinny Habits
Free Diet Newsletter

Don't miss out on the latest diets!

Join now - it's free.

A to Z