Quick Overview of the 17 Day Kickstart Diet
The 17 Day Kickstart Diet is 17 days long with three distinct phases.
The first three days of the 17 Day Kickstart Diet is called the 3-Day Scrub Phase where you’ll eat more plant forward foods to help release toxins.
The next four days (days 4 through 7) of the 17 Day Kickstart Diet is called the 4-Day Soak Up Phase where you’ll continue to eat the same foods, but add in new additions of food.
The main idea behind the 4-Day Soak Up phase is to feel full and satisfied.
Finally, the last 10 days of the 17 Day Kickstart Diet is called the 10-Day Stabilize Phase.
It’s during this last phase where you’ll add in different animal based proteins, more starchy vegetables and whole grains such as oats, breads and pastas.
The main idea behind the 10-Day Stabilize phase is to stabilize your health, lifestyle and eating habits.
Here are the approved foods by phase taken directly from his book, but organized by food type in an easier-to-understand format.
The 3-Day Scrub Food List
The following foods are approved for all phases of the 17 Day Kickstart Diet, so this particular list will be used throughout the entire 17 days, with each phase adding in additional foods.
To start, the first three days of the diet, also know as the 3-Day Scrub phase, focuses on detoxing from toxins by relying on the following approved foods:
Non-Starchy Vegetables (eat as much as you need):
Green Leaf and Red Leaf Lettuce
Sprouts and microgreens:
Broccoli (And Riced Broccoli)
Cauliflower (And Riced Cauliflower—There Are Several Commercial Frozen Versions Available)
All Other Non Starchy Vegetables:
Zucchini, zucchini noodles or “zoodles”
Bell peppers (orange, red, green, yellow)
Onion Scallions/green onion
Pickles, dill relish (no added sugar)
Sauerkraut (check salt content on all these; it should stay under 100 mg of sodium per serving)
Starchy Vegetables (Limit 2 Servings before 2pm):
Orange squash like butternut and kabocha
Low Sugar Fruits (Limit 2 Servings by 2pm):
Blackberries, fresh or frozen
Protein (Plant Based/Legumes):
Hummus (but make sure hummus is oil-free or made with olive oil, no canola or other inflammatory oils—or make your own) Black Beans
Quinoa (Torey’s note: this is a complete protein and added to this section for clarity)
Fish, especially fish that is low in mercury such as:
Sardines, canned in water or olive oil
Wild salmon, fresh, smoked, or canned in water (Wild Planet is a good source for high-quality canned sardines and salmon)
Chicken: Per Dr. Mike’s Book, if you must have chicken in the first 3 days, try Organic, Free-Range Chicken
Healthy Fats: Seeds/Seed Butters/Dairy Free Alternatives:
Sunflower butter (in moderation: serving amount = 1 tablespoon once a day)
Pumpkin seeds and pumpkin seed butter (serving amounts = 2 tablespoons unsalted seeds, 1 tablespoon pumpkin seed butter)
Quinoa (Torey’s Note: this is a complete protein. Also added to the plant-based protein list for clarity)
Unsweetened flax milk and unsweetened hemp milk
Canned light coconut milk (½ cup = 1 serving)
Healthy Fats (for cooking/drizzling/recipes):
Olive oil (best if drizzled on prepared food rather than used during cooking)
Avocado oil or avocado oil spray (good smoking point, best choice for cooking oil)
Avocado (cut off any brown or black spots, which are caused by oxidation; same goes for any visible mold)
Apple cider vinegar, raw (such as Bragg)
Bone broth: chicken, beef, turkey (all low-sodium)
Vegetable broth (low-sodium)
Coconut milk (check ingredients for no additives, Native Forest organic unsweetened recommended – Torey’s note: “canned light coconut milk was also listed in the book)
Coconut water (in moderation)
Red pepper flakes
Sea salt, Himalayan sea salt, kosher salt
Organic green tea
Dandelion root and leaf tea
Raw honey (local when possible; 1 teaspoon = 1 serving)
Organic maple syrup (2 teaspoons = 1 serving)
100% whole stevia leaf with no sugar alcohols added (such as erythritol)
100% pure monk fruit with no sugar alcohols added (such as erythritol)
The 4-Day Soak Up Food List
The next four days of the diet (days 4 through 7), also known as the 4-Day Soak Up Phase, put an emphasis on a few new additions.
In the 4-Day Soak Up Phase, you get to include all of the foods from the previous 3-Day Scrub Phase, but the following new foods:
Protein (animal based):
Eggs (free-range, organic)
Chicken Note from book: You may eat chicken as needed, just like in the Scrub phase.
Note: bananas were NOT listed under the “new foods” section. However, they were listed under the recap of the “Scrub” food list under the 4-Day Soak Up Chapter + listed in Soak Up Recipes section.
Pickles (look for pickles with no added sugar) (Torey’s note: this was already on the scrub list)
Dark chocolate (70% cacao or higher; 1 serving = 1 ounce)
Cacao (powder or nibs)
The 10-Day Stabilize Food List
During the 10-Day Stabilize Phase (days 8 through 17), you can eat all foods from the previous two phases including vegetables and starchy vegetables, per the book.
Dr. Mike mentions that you get “extra credit” for leafy greens, artichokes, jicama, and sweet potatoes.
The following additional foods are approved for the 10-Day Stabilize phase:
Whole cooked grains:
Whole grain breads:
Whole wheat pita
Whole wheat tortilla
Sprouted whole wheat
Rye (100% whole)
Fermented sourdough bread
Gluten-free breads and tortillas
Whole wheat pasta
Low Sugar Fruit:
All fruits, with an emphasis on low-sugar fruits such as:
Prickly pear cactus
Ghee (preferably organic)
Other Healthy Fats:
Nut butters, preferably organic (1 tablespoon = 1 serving)
Protein (Fish/Seafood/Animal Based):
Fish, with an emphasis on wild-caught salmon and sardines
Eggs (limit to 6 total eggs per week)
Poultry (1 serving = 4 to 6 ounces)
Beef (1 serving = 4 to 6 ounces)
Pork (1 serving = 4 to 6 ounces)
Lamb (1 serving = 4 to 6 ounces)
Protein (Plant Based):
Beans, lentils (Torey’s note: these were originally on 3-Day Scrub list)
Buckwheat (Torey’s note: this is classified as a seed)
All spices and herbs, with an emphasis on:
Natural sweeteners (no more than 2 teaspoons per serving):
Green tea (or one cup of coffee or black tea a day if preferred)
Specific Dairy Foods:
Kefir (1 serving = 4 ounces)—preferably organic, unflavored (since flavored varieties have more sugar)
Yogurt (1 serving = 6 ounces)—preferably organic, whole-fat (not skim, which usually has more sugar content). You can also try nut-based yogurts, and sheep or goat milk yogurt. Greek yogurt is optimal.
Note in Book Regarding Yogurt: By Dr. Moreno directly, “Avoid sweetened yogurts; if you do have them (or any packaged food), stay under 12 grams of sugar per serving. The best way to sweeten yogurt is to add fresh fruit (such as mashed-up berries) or 1 teaspoon maple syrup (only about 4 grams of sugar, and it takes only this much to enhance sweetness).”
Cheese (easy-to-digest examples from the book):
(1 serving = 1 ounce, equivalent to 1 thin slice or 2 small cubes, about the size of a pair of dice)
Note about Kombucha: Directly from the book by Dr. Moreno, “One serving should not exceed 12 grams of sugar—the lower, the better, of course, because not only is there less sugar but there is also more probiotic content. Most bottles of kombucha can easily be separated into two servings.”
*SPECIAL NOTE REGARDING NUTS AND SEEDS:
Directly from the book, “* Choose unsalted nuts and seeds, to avoid excess sodium. And if you can get raw, sprouted seeds, that’s ideal for the nutritional profile.”
**SPECIAL NOTE REGARDING SHELLFISH:
Directly from the book, “** Shellfish such as lobster and crab are often served at restaurants with copious amounts of butter, so if you’re eating out, ask for your shellfish without butter for dipping. It’s delicious enough on its own! (Or with a cilantro pesto, perhaps!)”
Foods to Avoid During 3-Day Scrub Phase
In the 17 Day Kickstart Diet book, Dr. Moreno has a long list of foods to avoid during the first 3 days of the diet. Here they are directly from the book:
Beef, pork, lamb, and any other land-animal meat other than chicken
Processed meats: deli meats, hot dogs, bacon, sausage
Processed fake meats: Beyond Burger, Impossible Foods, tofurkey, etc.
Fast food (anything from a drive-thru is fast food—yes, even the fruit cup)
All dairy and all grains
High-starch veggies: potatoes (other than sweet potatoes), corn, carrots, beets
All artificial sweeteners
All added sugars (outside of small amounts of raw honey)
The 3 C’s: canola oil, corn oil, and cottonseed oil (because they can cause or contribute to inflammation)
The 3 S’s: soybean oil, sunflower oil, and safflower oil (because they can cause or contribute to inflammation)
Foods to Eat Less of During 10-Day Stabilize Phase
In his book, Dr. Moreno makes it a point to take the word “never” off the table when it comes to describing foods he’d like you to eat less of during the 10-Day Stabilize Phase.
Some of the foods he’d like you to eat less of include the following:
- Fast food you’d get at a drive thru
- Fried foods (including anything breaded with a white-flour based batter)
- Foods containing white flour such as breads and pastas
- Milk and cream
- All sugars (with the exception of those he listed as approved in each phase)
- Excessive caffeine (more than 200mg/day which amounts to about two cups of coffee)
- Alcohol (a drink or two after your first 17 days is OK if you absolutely need it)
A Simple 17 Day Kickstart Diet Meal Plan
My brand new meal plan, A Simple 17 Day Kickstart Meal Plan, is now available!
It follows Dr. Mike’s new Kickstart diet!
When you purchase the plan, you’ll receive a BRAND NEW meal plan complete with menus, recipes, prep guide and shopping lists!
When you click through to the page, you can take a peek at the 17 day menu!
In the meantime, take a peek at the first 3 days!
Want to take a look at the entire 17 days? Click here to view more.
Plant Forward Dinner Meal Plan for the 17 Day Kickstart Diet
If you’re looking for more plant-based dinner recipes to start your 17 Day Kickstart Diet, make sure you check out my vegetarian dinner meal plan, Simply Veggie.
I originally created my Simply Veggie dinner meal plan a few years ago for vegetarians on the original 17 Day Diet who didn’t have a lot of options when it came to a plant-based menu.
I kept getting requests for plant-based recipes and that’s how Simply Veggie came to be!
Even though Simply Veggie was created for the original 17 Day Diet, the recipes can definitely be used for the new 17 Day Kickstart Diet.
You can check out the menu below to get an idea of the recipes available for dinner time.
There may need to be a few tweaks here and there with ingredients (i.e. use tempeh instead of tofu)
Where to Buy The 17 Day Kickstart Diet Book
The easiest way to order the 17 Day Kickstart Diet book is on amazon. You can order that here.
Sure, you can probably start the diet by reading my 17 Day Kickstart Diet book review, but I feel like the book is a great starting place, too!