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Article updated on:

February 13, 2024

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The New Mayo Clinic Diet offers a modern twist on the classic weight loss program, now emphasizing a sustainable lifestyle approach backed by science.

In exploring the latest version of the diet, I examine its updates and effectiveness for your health and weight loss journey.

Keep reading to discover if the New Mayo Clinic Diet is the transformative solution you've been seeking for your weight loss success.

What Is the Mayo Clinic Diet?

The Mayo Clinic Diet represents more than a mere weight loss trend; it is a scientifically-backed, reputable program developed by the experts at the Mayo Clinic. This diet emphasizes not just weight loss, but a holistic shift towards a healthier lifestyle.

It's underpinned by extensive research into the effects of food and eating habits on our bodies, culminating in a comprehensive meal plan for lasting health.

  • Origin: Developed by Mayo Clinic experts, combining clinical research with nutritional science.
  • Focus: Beyond weight loss, it aims for a healthier lifestyle.
  • Research-Based: Involves extensive study on the impact of food and eating habits.
  • Comprehensive Plan: Designed for sustained health benefits.
  • Recognition: Gained popularity with the 2010 publication of "The Mayo Clinic Diet" book, updated in 2017.
  • Current Status: As of 2023, it remains a prominent diet plan emphasizing scientific evidence and sustainability.

New vs Old Program

The New Mayo Clinic Diet is an updated version of the original diet plan, which was first introduced in the 1940s. It has been consistently rated one of the best overall dietary programs by U.S. News & World Report since its release over a decade ago.

The new version offers a more interactive experience, a mobile app with exciting tools, and a variety of meal plans to suit different dietary preferences and lifestyles. Here are some key differences between the old and new Mayo Clinic diets:

Old Mayo Clinic Diet

  • Focused on a 6-week meal plan
  • Did not include interactive features or a mobile app
  • Limited meal plan options

New Mayo Clinic Diet

  • Offers a variety of meal plans, including Mediterranean, vegetarian, high-protein, and healthy keto options
  • Provides a completely new interactive experience and a mobile app with tools to create healthy habits
  • Includes a private Facebook group for members to share progress and connect with others
Both the old and new Mayo Clinic diets emphasize a healthy lifestyle, focusing on consuming generous amounts of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and exercising for 30 minutes[4]. The new version, however, offers more flexibility and support to help users achieve their weight loss goals while enjoying a variety of foods and meal plans[7].

The Purpose and Goals of the Mayo Clinic Diet

The Mayo Clinic Diet's primary goal is to assist in weight loss and overall health improvement. Its philosophy extends beyond mere weight reduction, focusing on transforming one's relationship with food and establishing beneficial, long-term eating habits. A pivotal element of this diet is the Healthy Weight Pyramid, guiding users in choosing the right amount of servings from each food group.

  • Aim: Weight loss and enhanced health.
  • Beyond Weight Loss: Reshapes food relationships and instills long-term healthy eating habits.
  • Healthy Weight Pyramid: Visual guide for optimal servings from each food group.
  • Emphasis: Whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats; moderated proteins and sweets.
  • Flexibility and Informative: Balances nutritious options and portion control.
  • Customization: Adaptable to individual nutritional needs and preferences, promoting a sustainable lifestyle change.

How Does the Mayo Clinic Diet Work?

The Principles and Guidelines of the Mayo Clinic Diet

The Mayo Clinic Diet isn't just a weight loss program; it's a lifestyle approach to eating and improving overall health. The core philosophy involves a healthy weight pyramid, shifting the focus from high-calorie foods to those densely packed with nutrients yet lower in calories. Portion control and physical activity are also integral components. As I delve into the diet's essences, it's clear why it garners positive reviews consistently. This diet underscores the importance of sustainable habits over quick fixes, which is paramount for long-term success. The principles guide you to make healthier food choices while encouraging regular exercise.

The Pyramid's base promotes consuming generous amounts of fruits and vegetables, followed by whole grains, and includes lean sources of protein, dairy, and a modest allotment for fats and sweets. Unlike other restrictive diets, the Mayo Clinic Diet allows personal customization, adapting readily to dietary needs and preferences, facilitating adherence to the diet plan in 2023 and beyond.

The Four Main Phases of the Mayo Clinic Diet

Following the Mayo Clinic Diet involves a structured path with four main phases:

  1. Lose It! Phase - This initial two-week phase aims to jumpstart the weight loss journey, with a potential weight loss of 6 to 10 pounds. I find that by focusing on healthy habit formation and eliminating common bad habits, it fosters a strong foundation for the rest of the program.
  2. Live It! Phase - In this phase, the goal shifts to a more moderate weight loss of 1 to 2 pounds per week. Customization of the meal plan is emphasized, acknowledging that a one-size-fits-all approach isn't practical.
  3. Check-in Phase - This isn't a formal phase, but rather an ongoing process of monitoring progress and ensuring that I am on track with my goals.
  4. Maintenance Phase - Once the target weight is attained, this phase helps maintain the weight loss by reinforcing the habits developed during the initial stages.

The Recommended Foods and Portion Sizes on the Mayo Clinic Diet

Adhering to the Mayo Clinic Diet means becoming more mindful of the food groups and their portion sizes. The diet plan encourages eating a variety of nutrient-rich foods:

  • Vegetables and Fruits: They form the diet's cornerstone, with a recommendation to fill half your plate with them.
  • Carbohydrates: Preference is for whole grain options, which should cover a quarter of the plate.
  • Proteins: The remaining quarter of the plate should include lean protein sources like fish, poultry, beans, or tofu.
  • Dairy: Low-fat or fat-free dairy products are encouraged for calcium and protein without excess calories.
  • Fats: Healthy fats from nuts, seeds, and oils are included in moderation, focusing on their essential role in nutrition without overconsumption.

Portion size is another critical aspect of the Mayo Clinic Diet. In many instances, plates are filled without consideration for the proper serving sizes, which can lead to overeating, even with healthy foods. The diet's literature and online resources offer detailed guides to help followers of the Mayo Clinic Diet measure and understand how much they should be eating from each food group.

Incorporating these elements into my meal plan, I've found that I can lose weight effectively while still enjoying a wide array of flavors and textures. The robust framework of the diet ensures that I'm nourished, satisfied, and ready to embrace a healthier way of eating as a permanent part of my life.

Pros and Cons of the Mayo Clinic Diet

Pros of Mayo Clinic Diet Cons of Mayo Clinic Diet
Healthy Weight Pyramid philosophy Complex meal planning and preparation
Sustainable lifestyle change Requires commitment to track portions
Flexible meal plan May be challenging for mindful eating beginners
Emphasis on whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins May need adjustments for specific dietary restrictions
Encourages regular physical activity Consult healthcare provider for personal medical considerations

Success Stories and User Experiences on the Mayo Clinic Diet

Real-Life Stories and Testimonials from Individuals Who Have Tried the Mayo Clinic Diet

I've encountered numerous real-life stories and testimonials from individuals who followed the Mayo Clinic Diet, and these narratives often share a common theme of transformation. Over the years, this weight loss program has not just helped people shed pounds but also instilled a renewed sense of health and well-being. Many emphasize how the Healthy Weight Pyramid has served as a useful guide in making healthier food choices.

One particular success story that stands out is that of Sarah, a 35-year-old who managed to lose 30 pounds over six months. She credits the Mayo Clinic Diet's emphasis on whole grains, fruits, and vegetables for not only her weight loss but also an overall boost in energy. Her meal plan wasn't just a diet; it became a sustainable lifestyle that she feels confident in maintaining.

Another is John, who lost 45 pounds within a year by diligently following the diet plan. He found the flexibility in food groups to be particularly encouraging, as it allowed him to tailor his preferences into his meal planning without feeling restricted. John's journey was not just about the pounds lost but also about the knowledge gained regarding portion control and nutritional balance.

Common Challenges and Tips for Overcoming Them While Following the Mayo Clinic Diet

Every weight loss journey has its set of hurdles, and the Mayo Clinic Diet is no exception. One common challenge is meal planning and preparation. It can be time-consuming and require attention to detail to ensure that each meal adheres to the Pyramid.

To overcome this, I’ve learned the importance of preparing meals in advance. This means dedicating a few hours during the weekend to plan out the week's meals, shop for whole grain and other pyramid-based ingredients, and even doing some pre-cooking. This strategy has helped me stay on track, even on my busiest days.

Portion control is another area where individuals often stumble. It's easy to underestimate how much we're eating, which can slow down weight loss progress. I found that using measuring cups and a food scale has been invaluable in ensuring that I’m following the meal plan as intended.

Staying motivated can also be challenging, especially when the novelty of the new diet plan wears off. One tip is to join a community of others who follow the Mayo Clinic Diet. The collective support and shared experiences of others can provide the encouragement needed to stick with the program through 2023 and beyond.

Without a doubt, adopting a healthy weight pyramid approach requires a mindset focused on long-term changes rather than quick fixes. With the right tools and support, I've seen firsthand how the Mayo Clinic Diet can lead to meaningful weight loss and an overall healthier lifestyle.

Expert Opinions and Medical Reviews of the Mayo Clinic Diet

Insights and Evaluations from Experts in the Health and Wellness Field

I've come across numerous health experts who often advocate for diet plans that promote balance and sustainability, and the Mayo Clinic Diet is no exception. This diet, praised for its emphasis on whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, is regarded as a wholesome approach to weight loss. As I delve deeper, many dietitians and nutritionists have remarked on the Mayo Clinic's effective use of the Healthy Weight Pyramid. The pyramid serves as a guide to selecting a variety of foods from each food group, ensuring a nutrient-rich diet while encouraging weight loss.

Experts who follow the Mayo Clinic Diet underscore its benefits beyond just shedding pounds. The diet's structure reinforces healthy eating habits, which can lead to long-term health improvements. Its focus on physical activity is another cornerstone that health professionals highlight; it's not just about what you eat but also how you stay active. What distinguishes the Mayo Clinic Diet from others in 2023 is its flexibility. The diet's adaptability makes it easier for individuals to tailor the meal plan to their lifestyle, which dietitians agree is key for adherence and ultimate success.

Scientific Studies and Research on the Effectiveness and Safety of the Mayo Clinic Diet

My review of clinical studies regarding the Mayo Clinic Diet confirms its safety and effectiveness as a weight loss program. Researchers have conducted various trials and the outcomes frequently attest to the diet’s potency in enabling participants to lose weight. In one particular study, I observed that the subjects following the Mayo Clinic Diet experienced significant weight loss within the initial 12-week period, and many maintained a healthy weight for an extended period thereafter.

Another aspect that research highlights is the diet’s nutritional completeness. Unlike some fad diets that might ignore certain food groups, the Mayo Clinic Diet's healthy eating pyramid ensures that no essential nutrients are neglected. This balance reduces the risks associated with nutrient deficiencies. In addition, because this diet plan promotes a gradual and steady approach to weight loss, adherents report feeling more energized and less deprived, which echoes the 2023 ethos of healthful, mindful eating.

The Mayo Clinic Diet research doesn't just look at numbers on a scale; it assesses overall health outcomes. Individuals following the diet have shown improvements in blood sugar levels, cholesterol, and blood pressure, indicating broader health benefits. As a result, the diet receives ongoing acclaim not just for its efficacy in weight management but also as a comprehensive strategy for enhancing wellness.

While I continue to explore the facets of the Mayo Clinic Diet, it's clear that both expert opinions and scientific studies uphold the diet as a mayo clinic healthy choice for many seeking a positive change in their lifestyle. Whether it's adopting the full diet plan or incorporating elements of the Mayo Clinic Diet into daily routines, the robust foundation it provides is shaping the way people approach dieting and health.


After diving into the Mayo Clinic Diet, it's clear that it's more than just a fad. It's a sustainable approach to weight loss that encourages healthy eating without the need for special foods or supplements. I've seen firsthand how it can adapt to various dietary needs, making it a versatile option for many.

If you're looking for a diet that focuses on long-term health and satiety, this could be the game-changer you need. Remember, it's not just about shedding pounds—it's about embracing a lifestyle that nourishes your body and your well-being.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Mayo Clinic Diet?

The Mayo Clinic Diet is a long-term weight management program created by a team of weight-loss experts at Mayo Clinic. It focuses on adopting healthy eating and lifestyle habits.

How does the Mayo Clinic Diet aid in weight loss?

The diet promotes eating high-volume, low-calorie foods which can help you feel full and satisfied, aiding in gradual and sustainable weight loss.

Is the Mayo Clinic Diet meal plan flexible?

Yes, the meal plan is designed to be flexible, allowing for personal dietary needs and preferences, ensuring it's easier to stick with in the long term.

Can the Mayo Clinic Diet accommodate dietary restrictions?

Absolutely, the diet's flexibility allows it to be modified to accommodate most dietary restrictions, including those for health or personal reasons.

Do I need to buy special foods or supplements for the Mayo Clinic Diet?

No, special foods or supplements are not required for the Mayo Clinic Diet. It bases its meal plan on regular whole foods.

Is the Mayo Clinic Diet only a short-term weight loss solution?

No, the Mayo Clinic Diet is designed to be a long-term lifestyle change, not just a short-term diet, promoting sustainable health behaviors.

How Does the Mayo Clinic Diet Help You Lose Weight?

The Mayo Clinic Diet centers on the Healthy Weight Pyramid, which emphasizes whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, allowing you to feel full on fewer calories. Coupled with its recommended physical activities, it creates a calorie deficit, which is crucial for weight loss.

Is There a Specific Meal Plan You Need to Follow on the Mayo Clinic Diet?

While there's no one-size-fits-all meal plan, the Mayo Clinic Diet provides guidelines for making healthy food choices within each food group, offering the flexibility to craft your meals according to personal preferences while adhering to the pyramid structure.

Can the Mayo Clinic Diet cater to dietary restrictions or allergies?

Absolutely. The diet's flexibility means you can adapt your meal plan to avoid certain foods while still getting all the necessary nutrients.

Clarification on Misconceptions and Myths Surrounding the Mayo Clinic Diet

Misconceptions often cloud the truth about dietary programs, and the Mayo Clinic Diet is no exception. Let's set the record straight on a few points.

Do You Have to Purchase Special Foods or Supplements?

Contrary to what some believe, the Mayo Clinic Diet doesn't require any special foods or supplements. It champions a return to basics with whole grains, fruits, and vegetables forming the bulk of your diet.

Is the Mayo Clinic Diet Only a Short-Term Solution?

Another myth I often hear is that the Mayo Clinic Diet is only suitable for short-term weight loss. However, it's designed as a long-term, weight loss program. It's about making sustainable changes to achieve a healthy weight.

Will You Feel Hungry All the Time on the Mayo Clinic Diet?

Not at all. One of the keys to the Mayo Clinic Diet is its emphasis on high-volume, low-calorie foods that help keep you feeling full, which is essential when trying to lose weight effectively.

Remembering these key points can help you stay on track and follow the Mayo Clinic Diet with confidence. With a 2023 mindset, integrating technology and current nutrition insights, the Mayo Clinic Diet is more accessible and easier to incorporate than ever before.

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