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Pritikin Diet

It's a diet more about healthy living than weight loss.

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BACKGROUND Start the Diet Now Advertisement

Most of us don't make the drastic dietary changes until we learn of our poor health. Nathan Pritikin did the same in the '50s after learning he had heart disease. He quickly created a low-fat, high-fiber diet regimen accompanied with exercise that proved advantageous with clean medical reports thereafter. Based on his success, Pritikin introduced his Pritikin Diet, as well as created the Pritikin Longevity Center as a resource for other suffering similar health problems.

The Pritikin Diet requires serious commitment as it is nearly a wholly vegetarian program that is low in cholesterol, nearly void of fat and high in fiber. The Pritikin Diet recommends considerable amounts of whole grain and vegetables. You'll have about six meals each day with limited serving sizes. There are absolutely no processed grains like white bread or instant rice. The diet’s main objective is to create whole health. Studies have shown that the Pritikin diet can help reduce heart disease risks, help prevent and control type 2 diabetes and possibly some cancers. The diet also claims to promote healthy, long-term weight loss.

Main Website: Pritkin.com

EDITOR’S TIP: Combine this supplement with a proven fat burner as Sletrokor for better results

  • May decrease risk of common illnesses such as heart disease and diabetes.
  • Claims to reduce cancer risks
  • Claims to promote healthy weight loss
  • Backed by substantial research to support the long-term health benefits
  • No special foods must be purchased
  • The diet is a lifestyle, not a temporary solution for losing weight
  • The plan is intended to create whole body wellness
  • Uses mind-body medicine to improve mental well-being to accompany the physical wellness
  • Vegetarian friendly
  • Promotes fitness
  • Meat is limited on the Pritikin plan, especially red meat
  • One serving of animal protein a day is recommended, no more
  • Caffeine is limited on the plan
  • Many restrictions: some foods are limited to once a month
  • Uses healthy mind-body medicine to promote wellness, may not have as much research to back up these practices

Exercise is an important component of the Pritikin Diet. The three main focuses are cardiovascular conditioning, strength training, and stretching. Cardio is recommended about 30 to 90 minutes six days a week. Many activities ranging from walking to jogging or rowing all fall under appropriate cardio activities. Strength training is recommended for about 20 minutes, 2-3 times a week. Any sort of resistance training is acceptable from elastic bands to free weights. Stretching is needed daily for about 10 minutes at a time.


Pritikin is a very healthy diet as it eliminates nearly all cholesterol-containing foods and emphasizes fresh fruit and vegetables along with whole grains. The diet is intended to create a very healthy body, and mind as emotional well-being is a pillar in the whole program. The diet could be a tough transition for those who have eaten meat-heavy diets. The exercise is rather intense for a beginner, but seems sound in it’s reasoning, as it aims to promote longevity. As we all know, if you don’t use it, you lose it. So, consequently, if one follows the plan of healthy eating and exercise, weight loss will follow those who need to shed pounds.

Common Misspellings

Pritkin Diet, Prikin Diet, Pritiken Diet

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(Page 1 of 1, 11 total comments)



Too low in fat. Plant based fats are healthy IMHO, in moderation,and provide satiety and flovor. I've read that fat intake between 20-30% is optimal.

It's not vegan. I don't feel that animal flesh/products are at all healthy fare.

That its ok to eat some refined grains... White pasta isn't heslthy even if eaten with vegetables.

posted Sep 3rd, 2015 11:25 pm



I have been on Pritikin since the end of July 2013 (4 months now) and I have adjusted very well to eating in this way. I suggest that anyone should find a copy of THE PRITIKIN PROGRAM FOR DIET AND EXERCISE by Nathan Pritikin & Patrick McGrady (Bantam Books 1980--it's out of print but it was a huge seller in paperback and it can be found in any second-hand book store or rummage store). The book states what can be eaten, what can't be eaten, and why. My cholesterol is down from the highest it ever was--235 at 193 lbs. at my fattest--to 135 overall blood serum cholesterol currently at 145lbs. This for an almost 50 year old man!

posted Nov 23rd, 2013 7:56 pm



My Nutritionist is the one who told me about the Pritikin Diet. It was not easy to follow because as they say it takes commitment & hard work to be able to succeed. Set a goal in your mind and picture a healthier you. it's the best gift you could ever give to yourself. No more pain, no more pills, no more fast foods. Start today. I did it & when it was time to go back for my annual check-ups my cholesterol levels were just right. It's about living a better life & feeling great. I strongly recommend this diet.

posted Nov 5th, 2011 3:45 pm



If food is one of your gods, Pritiken may not work for you. If you can understand that food is fuel and not entertainment, you will benefit from the Pritiken Program. If you can discipline your eating habits, Pritiken will work for you no matter what stage you are in.

posted Jun 8th, 2011 2:12 pm



As a participant in the program, I witnessed miracle changes in health through the power of diet and exercise. I saw people in jeopardy of losing their limbs to diabetes learn to control it without medication. As for myself, my BP went from 180/120 to 111/76 without any drugs. So, if you need to drastically reduce your sugar, salt, or fat in your diet, this is excellent. However, if you are someone who is addicted to food and eats because you are hungry, angry, lonely, tired, or bored, you will not be able to sustain this diet over the long run.

posted Apr 1st, 2011 5:20 am


Pritikin is really excellent if you can do it. The cavemen did pritikin.

posted Feb 16th, 2011 11:36 am

Stephen Francis

I followed this for 3 years and dropped weight from 15 stone to 10 stone. Managed to resist temptation by finding specific allowed items that I liked. Hunger was not a problem but craving for protein was (I did not eat meat at all). Protein craving was satisfied by kidney beans. Went off the diet as I relaxed back into a normal lifestyle. You will need to keep allowed food with you for when you get hungry as it is difficult to get allowed items from fast food outlets.

posted May 7th, 2009 7:00 pm

Patti Giffin


..this is a great way to eat -- can not imagine ever being hungary on this regime -- you are allowed meat/poultry in moderation (portions are controlled) where there is no portion control over raw fruit and vegetables...the big adjustment is to no salt, no processed foods and minimal oils. Very satisfying way to eat - and your energy will increase and your health improvements will just continue to get better --- and a side benefit is losing weight!

posted Apr 2nd, 2009 4:05 pm


When I first read about this diet (many, many years ago), I felt it was way too restrictive. In light of what the medical community has discovered about fats--that some of them are actually good for you and don't cause heart disease--I am even more convinced that it is too restrictive. I agree with "yayadash23" that it is more for disease recovery/prevention for those that have serious heart problems.

posted Mar 4th, 2008 12:07 pm


Pritikin diet is very high in vegetables...and with the fiber I couldn't stay out of the bathroom


this is more for disease recovery/prevention than a diet...I still might try it just for a healthier body


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