Scarsdale Review & Buying Guide

some healthy food sitting on the dinner table

The Scarsdale Diet has been around since the 1970s, but that doesn’t mean it has lost much in the popularity department over the past 40+ years. It still pulls in almost 10,000 searches per month on Google, as people look for healthy ways to lose weight and a plan that is easy to follow.

So what’s behind the diet’s continued popularity, and what kind of results can you expect if you follow the menu?

More on that below…

How Does The Scarsdale Diet Work?

the scarsdale diet pie chart

The gist of the Scarsdale Diet was created by Dr. Herman Tarnower, and is based around a pretty simple, yet sort of complicated healthy eating algorithm: Your diet should consist of 43% protein, 34.5% carbohydrates, and 22.5% fat. The math is simple, but try making a grocery list based around those exact numbers – I get a headache just thinking about it! Luckily, the Scarsdale Diet book offers a guide that is easy to follow and produces some pretty amazing results for those who stick with it.

It’s no wonder, then, that The Scarsdale Diet is one of the best-selling diet books of all time. Even so, though, there are some risks associated with high protein diets, so talk to your doctor before starting it. That said, though, you will be eating plenty of fresh fruits and veggies while on the diet, so it’s not all bad.

How Much Weight Can You Lose?

When followed correctly, Scarsdale Dieters can typically expect to lose about a pound per day, according to the book. At face value, this seems like it might be a bit unrealistic to expect to drop a pound every single day, but it certainly isn’t outside the realm of possibility, especially if you’re significantly overweight.

One of the claims when Dr. Tarnower first released his world-famous book was the ability to help people lose up to 20 pounds in their first two weeks on the diet. Because the diet is very similar to Atkins, or a more moderate version of the ketogenic diet, those claims may certainly be possible, but not everyone should shoot for those lofty goals.

In most cases, the people who are going to be able to lose that much weight are those with the most weight to lose. In other words, if you’re extremely overweight, then you may have a good shot and dropping 20 pounds in 14 days, but it’s important to keep your expectations in check. The last time I used the keto diet, I think lost around 8 pounds during my first two weeks. At the time, I didn’t have a ton of weight to lose, but was more shooting for something in the 10 to 15 pound range. For me, this was huge and I was very happy with the results!

The same expectations can be applied to the Scarsdale Diet as well – I would recommend shooting for something more moderate, and then if you do happen to lose 20 pounds during the first two weeks, then you’ll be pleasantly surprised!

What Can You Eat?

While on the diet, you will be eating just 3 meals per day, without any snacks or dessert in between. The diet is heavy on fresh fruits, vegetables, and lean protein or meat. For the most part, you can eat as much food as you want during your three eating periods, especially when it comes to the fruits and vegetables.

The fruits are one thing that would make the Scarsdale Diet different from keto, so if you want a diet that allows you to eat plenty of fruits and a variety of veggies, then you may want to consider the Scarsdale Diet over some of the similar programs out there.

The book can help with meal planning so be sure to buy that if you’re looking for a way to follow the diet, but here’s a quick look at what a typical day might look like while on the diet.

Scarsdale Diet Menu


  • Black coffee or tea (can use a sugar substitute)
  • 1/2 Grapefruit
  • Slice of Whole Grain Bread


a plate of healthy foods sit on the dinner table

  • Two Eggs (Scrambled, Hard Boiled, Over Easy – You Pick)
  • Cottage Cheese
  • Tomato Slices
  • Slice of Whole Grain Bread
  • Black Coffee or Tea


  • Roast Turkey or Chicken (As Much as You Want – Yay!)
  • Salad with Lettuce, Cucumbers, Tomatoes, Etc. (As Much as You Want!)
  • Black Coffee or Tea

When it comes to the exact foods that you will be eating, you will want to follow the guide the book lays out. It’s pretty easy to follow once you get going, and everything should seem pretty straight-forward for the most part.

The best part is, once you’re following the plan, you should see a pretty substantial amount of weight loss!

Other Requirements

As you may have noticed with the sample menu, they recommend drinking coffee or tea with every meal. They also say you should drink at least four glasses of water per day while on the diet.

Of course, like with most healthy diet plans, there is a certain amount of exercise that is recommended as well. Dr. Tarnower says dieters should walk 3 km every day. That means you don’t have to bang the weights or run on the treadmill for hours on end. A nice leisurely stroll after dinner sounds like it should suffice.

How Long do You Follow the Program?

Under the Scarsdale approach, dieters should follow the original plan for 2 weeks at a stretch. After that, Dr. Tarnower recommended following his “Lifetime Keep-Slim Program,” which allows for some additional flexibility with your eating, while helping you maintain a healthy weight – again, more on that in the book.

Final Thoughts

The Scarsdale Diet has been a trusted program for weight loss for almost 50 years now and is one of the best-selling diet books of all time.

While the plan certainly isn’t for everyone, those who follow it can expect to lose up to 1 pound per day and are given a roadmap for sustaining their results over the long term.

Follow the link below for the best deal, and for everything you need to start following the Scarsdale Diet plan today!

Find the Scarsdale Diet book on Amazon here.