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Medifast Diet Review: Does it Work?

One of the leading meal delivery and meal replacement diets serving men and women since 1980.

Top Rated Diets of 2016
What is it?

Medifast Diet is a weight loss plan offering over 70 prepackaged foods, and suggestions for healthy meals. The plan offers 6 meals a day. With an eating schedule that allows meals every 3 to 4 hours.

The diet plan is also known as the Medifast Achieve plan, and it’s said to be the company’s easiest and most convenient weight loss strategy. It’s said to help promote weight loss while still preserving lean muscle mass. Even after one finishes losing weight, the diet plan is meant to help give people lifelong support. Our experts conducted many reviews and found that the 18Shake Diet plan was the most effective. It offers a natural metabolism booster and an appetite suppressing meal replacement shake, both of which are stimulant free and only made with natural ingredients. Discover more about the 18Shake Diet Plan when you click the link here.

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Medifast Diet Ingredients and Side Effects

Here are some common ingredients added to Medifast’s prepackaged foods:

Soy Protein Concentrate

Soy Protein Isolate

Milk Protein Concentrate



Artificial Flavor

Xanthan Gum


Acesulfame Potassium

Modified Food Starch

Guar Gum



Maltitol Syrup



Soy Protein: This soybean extract is often GMO unless otherwise stated. According to Health Research Funding:

“May cause mineral deficiencies… Soy products have some anti-nutrient contents”

“Blocks calcium absorption… soy products contain phytic acid, a natural plant based substance responsible in blocking calcium and some other valuable minerals”

Soy has issues due to its natural components which may decrease the amount of minerals the body absorbs.

Fructose: This basic fruit sugar is often added to processed drinks and foods as a cheap sweetener.  A clinical study performed by the University of California Davis found that it was:

“associated with the insulin resistance syndrome…. May be detrimental in terms of body weight and adiposity”

Not only did it fail to suppress appetite, but it’s been shown to have damaging effects on metabolism and overall health.

Large amounts of it are stored as fat which can potentially increase the risk for cardiovascular diseases.

Guar Gum: Common thickener extracted from the guar plant. Web MD describes its issues:

“Side effect include increased gas production, diarrhea, and loose stools”

“can cause blockages of the esophagus and the intestines”

It’s often added to processed foods as a cheap binder and thickener.

Sucralose: Artificial sweeter which is around 1,000 times sweeter than standard table sugar. It has no calories since the body cannot use it.

Studies have been performed which showed this ingredient was potentially dangerous. A study by Duke University found:

“Alters Gut Microflora and Increases Intestinal P-Glycoprotein”

This can be potentially damaging to the immune system, and when eaten, sucralose is considered a toxin according to this study.

A list of the top 10 ranked diet plans are made available in the link provided here.

Web MD has this to say about the Medifast Diet:

“those extreme changes may make sticking with the program a challenge”

“this is an extreme diet, so don’t try it without talking to your doctor first”

They call it extreme due to the 800 to 1,000 calorie limit a day that is suggested. This is extremely low and will result in weight loss, but it can be difficult to maintain.

The Achieve plan offers:

  • 4 Medifast meals: 70 different food options are offered such as sweets, soups, pastas, bars and shakes.
  • 2 lean and green meals: This is separate from the prepackaged meals. One choses 3 servings of vegetables. 2 servings of healthy fats and 5 to 7 ounces of lean protein from the menu offered.
  • 1 Healthy snack: This can be a serving of fruit or yogurt, a baked potato, whole wheat pasta, or several other offered foods. Also separate from the prepackaged foods.

Click the link here to see the highest rate diet plans.

EDITOR’S TIP: Combine this diet with a proven meal replacement such as 18 Shake for better results.

Medifast Diet  Quality of Ingredients

The ingredients added to the prepackaged foods are commonly found in other processed meals. These cheap additives are potentially unsafe, and they can actually make it harder to lose weight.

The added fructose, artificial additives, binders, and cheap thickeners are not quality ingredients. They may also make it harder to sustain the diet.

An 800 to 1,000 calorie a day diet is recommended, which is considerably low. Web MD has this to say about liming calories:

“Women should not restrict themselves to less than 1,000 calories per day… men to less than 200 calories per day without medical supervision”

When reducing calories to such a small limit, there’s a possibility for nutritional deficiencies and side effects. This is why this limitation is often only suggested to people under strict medical supervision.

The Price and Quality of Medifast Diet

Pricing can vary, but Web MD says:

“a 4-week supply of meal replacements will cost at last $300 plus shipping”

The foods offered are low in calories, but they’re also often loaded with artificial and processed additives. These kinds of ingredients can be found in other processed foods for much cheaper. The only difference is that there are fewer portions offered.

Health USA News also says about Medifast:

“It doesn’t perfectly align with the government’s guidelines for healthy eating… provides a little too much protein and too few calories”

“At 800 to 1,000 calories a day, it also dips low for many diets”

Both the kinds of foods offered and the limitations on calories make this a poor diet plan. There’s far too much of a risk of not being able to stick to the diet due to its extreme limitations. This is not suited for all people, and it’s the reason why many customers said they couldn’t continue with the Medifast Diet.

A list of the highest rated diet plans is made available in the link provided here.

Business of Medifast Diet

Medifast, Inc. is the name of the group; their contact information is listed as:

Phone Number: (800) 209-0878

They settled a $3.7 million dollar lawsuit for making false weight loss claims of:

“Medifast 5 & 1 plan…. (could help) lose up to 2-5 pounds per week”

The Federal Trade Commission found:

“did not have a reasonable basis in scientific evidence to support the claims”

They also have complaints on Consumer Affairs and Rip Off Report.com. Here’s what some customers had to say:

“I did not sign up for an auto renew account but my account automatically auto renewed”

“They always sign up for automatic shipments”

“terrible customer service & absolutely don’t care”

“They will not give money back”

Many users were concerned that the company did not allow for a money back return. People also said that the customer service staff was unhelpful, and that they were constantly put on hold for long periods.

A comprehensive list of the top 10 diet plans can be seen in the link provided here.

EDITOR’S TIP: The top 10 list of the best diets is available here.

Customer Opinions of Medifast Diet

Here are some customer quotes about the Medifast Diet:

“Horrendous food, very costly, total disappointment”

“My stomach was constantly turning; eventually the gas became so bad”

“The food was extremely horrible and made me feel so dizzy and weird”

“The “food” tastes like cardboard and is NOT healthy because it is full of additives and preservatives”

The majority of reviews on the food were negative. Many were concerned that there were side effects, and that the food tasted artificial. For many it was impossible to continue using the diet. Some people did manage to lose weight, but this is common in low calorie meal plans.

People did complain about gas, bloating, headaches, nausea, fatigue, and hair loss. This caused many concerns in people, as they were uncertain as to what could have caused these symptoms.

The overwhelming consensus is that the food options are not very good, and that they’re full of unwanted cheap additives.  The top 10 ranked diet plans list is viewable when you click here.

Conclusion - Does Medifast Diet  Work?

The Medifast Diet consists of pre-packaged low calorie foods, as well as diet advice and suggestions for grocery foods. Though it’s comprehensive, many users have said the quality of foods is poor, and health sites like Web MD have confirmed it’s difficult to maintain. Customers were also often disappointed with the high amounts of artificial ingredients, and potentially harmful additives. This includes things like binders, cheap sweeteners which can cause metabolism issues, and GMO additives.

Our experts have rated many different diets, and the highest ranked one of 2016 was the 18Shake Diet. It offers 2 all natural supplements, an appetite suppressing high protein meal replacement, and a metabolism boosting stimulant free diet pill. Customers have left glowing testimonials and opinions on the 18Shake Diet. Both combine to help provide weight loss benefits such as increase metabolism, improved digestion, well-rounded nutrients, and many other benefits.

Both supplements are backed by a full 30 day money back guarantee. All purchases are supported with this no questions asked risk free policy. Discover more information about the 18Shake Diet Plan by clicking here.

How Does Medifast Compare?
  • Product Name
  • User Rating
  • Easy to follow
  • Cheap Price
  • Fast Results
  • Medifast
  • 60 /100

> Leave Feedback

User Feedback

(Page 16 of 22, 434 total comments)



I've been doing Medifast for 4 months and have lost 30 lbs. I have to admit, I've cheated and that's why it's only 30 lbs. This program does work .. it requires some self-control and the hardest part i have found is the fact that I have to cook for my family which can be tempting for me. The program does work, and the food which tasted bland and had that 'sugar free' taste to me at first, is now delicious. I especially love the Medifast brownies. I would recommend this diet.

posted Jul 13th, 2010 2:25 pm



I lost 85 pounds on this diet TWELVE years ago, and have kept it off. They have a maintenance program that is very helpful. I disagree with the doctor's comments above. I have not paid for it at all - oh wait, I have! My cholesterol is lower, my self esteem is higher and my energy is back. Considering that I have a thyroid disease and have gone through menopause - not bad! I get a physical every year with a complete blood workup. There have been no problems. If you like having chocolate shakes and cookies for breakfast lunch and dinner - this is for you. By the way - I'm not connected with Medifast other than being a success story.

posted Jul 12th, 2010 5:15 pm



I couldn't get past the taste. I found that I don't do well with soy based products. I was on it for 3 weeks. I will say however, YOU DO LOSE WEIGHT! That is the truth. So if your stomach can tolerate soy products I would suggest this progam for quick weight loss.

posted Jul 9th, 2010 8:17 pm

stephanie lewis


You can't judge the food after one day or one week. I was so upset after the first week I thought I wasted my money. The food is soy based which most of us are not used to. Once you get used to it in about a week or two at the most you will crave the food. Honest!

Best and easiest diet I ever did. If someone had said I would have said that after the first week I would have said they were nuts. Give it one to two weeks to get used to soy!!!!!!

posted Jul 7th, 2010 8:57 pm



It was grosss! I can pretty much eat anything, but this diet put a screeching halt to that! The oatmeal(which I usually love...love...love...) looked like a horror movie.I am sure Freddie Kruger was waiting for me at the bottom of that bowl! People probably lose their weight on this diet from losing their appetite!!

posted Jul 3rd, 2010 11:11 am



Awesome plan! I have just had my first week's weigh in and lost 14.7 lbs.!!! The first week was tough, but the payout was well worth it! Try this for yourself, you won't be disappointed!

posted Jun 30th, 2010 2:23 am




posted Jun 27th, 2010 2:06 pm

Alexa Fleckenstein M.D.


No bought, ready-made diet ever can have the nutritional value a self-cooked meal has.

You might lose some pounds now - but you will pay a price for it.

Alexa Fleckenstein M.D., physician, author.

posted Jun 21st, 2010 8:33 pm

Eric H

This program works. Period. I watched as a co-worker of mine dropped over 80lbs in 5 months. I myself just started this program on June 1st, 2010. It is now June 15th and I have lost 28lbs. That's almost 2lbs a day!! Granted I have a lot more to lose than the average Medifast participant but still, in just 2 weeks I have lost over 6% of my total starting body weight. My wife started with me at the same time and while she has much less to lose she has already lost 11 pounds in 2 weeks. If your are sick and tired of being fat, sick and tired then give this program a try. IT WILL WORK IF YOU PUT THE EFFORT IN.

posted Jun 15th, 2010 12:41 pm



Takes self control-but if you stick to it, the weight melts off. I have lost 73 pounds in 7 months. No loss of energy. Helps you to re-evaluate your eating habits esp. portion control and healthy food choices. I have more energy, less aches and pains, and I am able to spend better quality time with my children!.

posted Jun 7th, 2010 9:14 am


when I first bit in to blueberry oatmeal as my first meal it was quite awful as all I could taste was sweetener but now that I have used the products for 5 full days (on my 6th) at this writing everything is tolerable if not tasty. Normally I'm hungry not long after I have eaten but now I am eating these products instead. I have my LM&G meal every day and look forward to 'real food'. I have made the choice to use the product so I will continue to give it a go. I'm hungry I won't lie but I drink water and kind of look for the opportunity to eat the next 'meal'. I have lost size in the last five days right off the front of me. It's a great feeling! I have also lost 5 or 6 pounds....maybe more (my scale may not match the doctor's).

posted Jun 6th, 2010 2:53 pm



I've been using it for 12 weeks and lost 28 lbs to date! I am so excited.I've tried every diet and nothing has worked. Medifast is the best thing I've found.

posted Jun 6th, 2010 1:36 am



I like they shakes they are yum!

posted Jun 4th, 2010 6:24 pm



This diet is okay for anyone who can live on shakes, faux candy bars, oatmeal and soup. I need some real food so this junk food diet doesn't cut it for me. Taste is average - if you want the same type of diet with better results just do slimfast. It's pretty much the same prepackaged bars & shakes with the luxury of a meal other than oatmeal or soup at less than half the price of medifast.

posted Jun 3rd, 2010 2:47 pm



Easy peasy dieting. That is my kind of dieting. Delivered to my door. Just tell me what to do!

posted Jun 3rd, 2010 12:19 am



The food is better than the food back in Ireland! and I am losing weight done and done...

posted May 29th, 2010 8:38 pm



I loved medifast and it definitely worked for me. The problem is that I gained it all back because I didn't maintain my habits and that is my own fault. Had I continued on a healthy eating plan and exercised like I was on Medifaast, I would be excatly where i wanted to be. I started at 218 lbs at 5"7 and was at 165 lbs only 4 months later. I went on vacation and my good habits went out the window and I never got back on track. Guess what that got me? A year later, I am 218 again!

posted May 25th, 2010 11:08 am



worked great used the coupon in the review!

posted May 21st, 2010 12:31 pm



The food is good. I like to throw in some fresh veggies from time to time and other low calorie foods. it rounds it out nicely.

posted May 21st, 2010 12:10 pm


I lost over 100 lbs in 10 months on Medifast food and have kept it off for over two years. It is safe for thinner people as my 80+ year old Aunts eat it for healthy, fast food. It's just the right amount and perfectly balanced. I carried my "baby weight" for 30 years was never able to get it off. This is the only program that has worked for me.

posted May 20th, 2010 5:55 pm


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QUICK FACTS Start the Diet Now Advertisement
  • Established: 1980
  • Founder: Dr. William Vitale
  • Headquarters: Owings Mills, Maryland
  • Stock Symbol: MED
  • Accessibility: Online
  • Diet Type: Meal Delivery, Meal Replacement, High Protein

Do You Know the Best Diet Pills of 2016?


Save time and energy by never having to grocery shop, count calories or cook your meals again. Medifast meal delivery service will send high protein meals directly to your home. By controlling portions, nutrients and calories, Medifast users can expect to lose 2-5 pounds per week for the first two weeks on the Medifast 5 & 1 Plan and 1-2 pounds per week thereafter.

The Medifast Plan menu consists of shakes, bars, soups, and other sides you can pair up to create your diet or the day. Medifast offers 70 meal choices to satisfy different palates and dietary requirements. Kosher, low glycemic, lactose-free and vegetarian diets are all supported by the Medifast plan. Medifast even has specific plans for the unique needs of women, men and diabetics.

Medifast's success has been proven in multiple clinical studies, the Medifast website offers dozens of real-life testimonials, and its products and programs have been recommended by more than 20,000 doctors since 1980.

A John Hopkins study found the Medifast plan helps dieters quickly and safely lose weight by decreasing the amount of calories they consume each day. The study also found that participants with type 2 diabetes lost 2 times the weight of individuals following the American Diabetes Association's dietary recommendations. Medifast also shows positive results in participants with other illnesses, like hypertension and high cholesterol.

All of the Medifast products are available online, but Medifast does offer some physical centers throughout the country, in Alabama, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, Texas and Virginia. You can choose to go to a center, but you can complete the program online just as easily.


Medifast YouTube Channel

Medifast Recipes at iFood TV

Meal Replacement Shake Review

  • Convenient, pre-packaged foods sent to your home
  • Reasonably priced
  • Large variety of foods so there is something for everyone
  • Encourages and incorporates exercise
  • Clinically proven weight loss
  • Doctor recommended
  • Provides detailed weight loss maintenance plan
  • Plans made for diabetics and other medical situations
  • Quick Start Guide available at TrustMedifast.com

  • Must cut carbs
  • May be tough transitioning back to regular diet
  • Low-calorie diet has its critics
  • Makes social situations harder to manage

A sampling of feedback and experiences shared by our community.

I am a 48 year old male with a fairly unactive lifestyle. On May 16, 2011 I started the Medifast diet following the 5/1 plan. My starting weight was 325 lbs. I am 11-1/2 weeks into the diet and have lost 58 lbs.

I come from a family of excellent cooks. Are the food offerings gourmet quality? No. However, they aren't, in general, as horrible as people say. Sure, there's a few clunkers out there but, for the most part, there are so many varieties that you should be able to find your way through. - Greg 8/5/11

I am 49 yrs old...5"5" and I started my program Aug 8th 2010 at 172 lbs I lost 45 lbs in 14 weeks! It's easy and the results are rapid. The first week I lost 8.5 lbs and the first month 17.5 lbs and then I averaged about 2.5 lbs a week. I have been reading lots' of discouraging people on here in regards to the food. Yes, there are some of the meals that you will not care for. But, you will figure out your likes and dislikes right away. Just don't eat more then one pkg out of each box for any returns.For me personally ..I love the bars and like the rice cakes, pretzels and puffs vanilla and mocha shakes yum! - Lorrie 8/4/11

I started medifast around October 2010. I went from 165lbs to about 142lbs in 3 months. I was very pleased. Unfortunately once I became comfortable being able to fit in my own clothes again I stopped the program. I did not start the maintenance program. My own fault. I ended up gaining my weight back and have started weight watchers and it's been successful so far. So depending on wether or not I would of stayed on the program I would have a better review. So it does work, and I do like it. But it was not for me and the food gets old quick! If you keep to it right, and do not cheat! I would cheat just for one day with some medifast and maybe a real meal with the family and I would be gaining a pound.. Just keep to it. - Alyssa 7/4/11

This diet works without a doubt as long as you can stick thru it. It is VERY difficult the first few days but once you make it thru week 1 the cravings pretty much go away. The food will also begin to taste better, however its best to try everything because not everyone like everything. I personally just do the shakes and brownies sometimes the scrambled eggs. They also have a great community site for advice and support and you can get great ways to doctor it up the meals too. The weight definitely comes off quickly and you see results weekly on the scale on with a measuring tape which is great motivation. Of course it has its downside like every diet the weight can come back quickly and more, but only if you don't go into the transition stage and gradual reintroduce foods back into your diet and maintain a healthy balanced diet. - Izzy 5/17/11


The Medifast diet consists of five prepared meals and one "Lean and Green Meal." (L&GM) known as the Medifast 5 & 1 plan. Your L&GM will consist of a lean protein (a seven-ounce serving of chicken, turkey or fish, or a five ounce serving of beef, pork or lamb) with a tablespoon's worth of condiment like ranch dressing, ketchup or mustard. You will also choose your side dish, which can include a salad, or raw or cooked vegetables. You will always eat at least three servings of vegetables in your L&GM.

The Medifast program encourages you to keep your metabolism high and avoid hunger by eating every three hours. It also recommends that you stay hydrated by drinking your choice of calorie-free beverage, preferably water, consuming at least 64 ounces each day. While your Lean and Green Meal and beverages are up to you, the rest of your meals will be chosen from the dozens of low-calorie, high nutritient meal-replacement items that Medifast delivers directly to you. With options like puddings, oatmeal, shakes, and scrambled eggs, it's hard to get bored.

At the beginning of the program, you will remove high carbohydrate vegetables from your diet like corn and carrots, to jump start your weight loss. You'll slowly introduce these items back into your diet over time and they can be a part of your diet in the maintenance phase, if you wish.

While on the Medifast program you don’t have to worry about counting anything; calories, grams of fat and carbs are all controlled and you can expect to lose between two and five pound per week. The Medifast meals are made with 24 different vitamins and minerals to keep you full and satisfy your nutritional needs.

A typical day of eating on the Medifast program looks like:

  • Breakfast – Spiced Pancakes with Sugar-Free Syrup
  • Snack – Chocolate Crunch Bar
  • Lunch – Chicken & Wild Rice Soup
  • Snack – Cinnamon Pretzel Sticks
  • Dinner – Baked Tilapia Fillet; Sautéed Sugar Snap Peas with Mushrooms, Carrots
  • Dessert – Coffee Soft Serve

The Medifast website offers an exercise guideline document, but there is specific workout program. Medifast recommends getting daily exercise, but your intensity, mode and duration are left completely up to you. They suggest running, jogging, swimming, dancing or walking, but with such a low calorie, structured program, getting your daily 30 minutes reccommended for health should be enough for you to successfully drop weight.

Medifast recommends waiting two to three weeks before introducing exercise if you do not already exercise regularly. You should also consult your physician if new to exercise. Start slow, and gradually increase you time and intensity as you feel things become easier. If you have been exercising consistently prior to starting Medifast, it is recommended that you reduce your intensity and duration of exercise for the first couple of weeks so your body can adjust to your lower calorie levels, and do no more than 45 minutes of vigorous exercise each day during this time period.

Medifast suggests, as do we, that you find something that you enjoy for your workouts so you are more likely to stick to them. The gym isn't your only option. You can take up jogging outside, dance classes, swimming, or biking to get in some exercise while finding a new activity you enjoy.


Common questions asked about the Medifast program by our community. Click each to see the full answer.

Does anyone experience an early plateau on Medifast? - NB 6/21/11

Is there any medical supervision on Medifast? - KJ 6/10/11

What is the cost of 3 months on Medifast? - Jeannie 6/8/11

Will my body adjust to hunger at the beginning of the diet? - Lisa 3/7/11

Ask or answer Medifast Questions now.


For more than 20 years, Medifast has been the answer for many people's weight loss struggles.. It’s also helped people with pre-existing health conditions, like diabetes and hypertension, lose weight safely. The taste and quality of the meals have gotten mostly positive feedback, so if you want to take out all of the guess work, Medifast may be the diet for you. You'll learn how to eat proper portions with balanced nutrition, while eating consistently throughout the day. Most programs and diets cannot boast the doctor recommendations, positive clinical findings and glowing testimonials that Medifast can. It's worth a look if you have weight to lose and are looking for a convenient, all in one approach to eating.


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Medifast Contact Information
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