Potato Diets for Weight Loss or Maintenance

Here’s something cool, please click.

It’s been fun so far seeing lots of new folks around here, and even some old-timers, trying the potato hack. We’ll get into the science later in the year, I wanted to start out with the practicalities of using the potato hack to lose some weight. Later, we’ll discuss using the potato hack to reset your metabolism, reduce inflammation, and other effects, but for now, we’ll focus on weight loss.

The Potato Hack has undeniable physiological effects on the overweight body. We can use these effects to lose and maintain weight effortlessly. Weight loss is normally achieved through some strict calorie counting scheme or manipulating the macronutrients (protein, fat, carb) to force a calorie deficit. Weight loss without a change in diet or a deficit is usually an empty promise.

Compared with starving oneself for months or years to lose weight, using the potato hack is a whole new kind of dieting experience. The “HCG diet” uses drops or injections of a human hormone that allow the participant to eat very few calories without feeling hunger. Many people who have tried both the HCG diet and the potato hack have told me that the potato hack has the same effects as the HCG diet, but at a fraction of the cost and without side effects.

Side effects have also been reported with the HCG diet and include fatigue, irritability, restlessness, depression, fluid buildup (edema), and swelling of the breasts in boys and men (gynecomastia). Another serious concern is the risk of blood clots forming and blocking blood vessels (Mayo Clinic, 2015).

Weight Loss

The potato hack can be used whether you need to lose 200 pounds or 2 pounds. Many people like to do a round or two of the potato hack in preparation for a class reunion, wedding, or photo-shoot. The fast acting potato hack is absolutely incomparable for losing a few pounds in short order.

If you have considerably more weight to lose, you will want to do subsequent rounds of the potato hack until your goal weight is reached. Here we’ll explore several different ways to pull off these repeated hacks. If your diet is horrendous, ie. you constantly overeat and traditionally make poor food choices, the potato hack can help get these cravings under control. However, no amount of potato hacking in the world will overcome bad eating habits, but it may help you see the folly in your ways.

The bane of most diets is that the weight lost comes right back on when you stray from the diet. The potato hack is not a “diet” but a fast fat-reduction method. Fat loss is the end goal of all diets, the potato hack focuses on this aspect of dieting while keeping your body adequately nourished. In food-form, the potato is hands-down the best diet pill ever designed.

Most diets make you focus on a completely new “way of eating,” often abbreviated “WOE,” it is indeed woeful to have to learn and adhere to new rules of eating. Diets that make you avoid starches, or meat, or fat indefinitely are destined to fail miserably. Our bodies are designed to eat a wide variety of foods. We can only fight nature for so long. Generally, these diets are plagued by strong cravings for forbidden foods, of course if you are reading this, you already know.

Quick Fat Blaster; 1-5 pounds

This is almost too easy. As most of you know, losing a pound or two to fit into those skinny jeans can be murder! Not so with the potato hack. You can generally get the results you want in a week. Done just prior to the engagement where you want to look your best, you’ll have the added benefit of reduced inflammation which gives the appearance of much more weight loss than the scale shows.

The plan:

For 3 days, eat nothing but potatoes. Do not fall for the lure of the “variations” we discussed last month. Do this “old school.” You have strong desire on your side.

Pre-hack – Buy a 20 pound bag of the best potatoes you can find. Organic if possible. Hopefully you know what kind of potatoes you like, having experimented earlier. If you are unsure, I suggest you start with smallish red potatoes. These will be tennis ball sized or smaller. The peels are very thin for easy peeling, if desired. They are very tasty and suited for all recipes.

Day 1 – Pre-cook about 10 pounds of potatoes in any manner you desire. For breakfast, try oil-free pan-fried hash browns. For lunch, if you work, pop a couple potatoes in the microwave or just eat them cold. No one will even notice. For dinner, more potatoes, however you like. If you get hungry during the times between meals, keep calm and eat potatoes. Remember, it’s not a potato eating contest, it’s a fast fat loss diet. Being a bit hungry means you are burning fat. Learn to embrace the hunger and only give in if you must.

Day 2 – Skip breakfast. Maybe gnaw on a small cold potato if you absolutely must, but try waiting as long as possible. Much of the fat loss that occurs on the potato hack happens in that magical time between dinner and your first meal of the day. Extending this time period will lead to more weight loss. Eat a hearty potato lunch. Try a big pile of oven-baked oil-free French fries. Even cold or reheated these taste great. Try not to eat again until dinner. For dinner, eat a hearty serving of potatoes however you like. May I suggest a large serving of mashed potatoes? By now your pre-cooked potatoes supply is dwindling. On the evening of day 2, cook as many potatoes as you think you’ll need for the next day. Go to bed hungry.

Day 3 – Breakfast only if you like. For lunch, a cold boiled potato. Your dinner should be a nice warm potato entrée. Savor the taste. By now you should find yourself actually enjoying a well-prepared potato meal. If you’ve been choking down cold boiled potatoes, you are undoubtedly getting tired of them. If this is your first try at the potato hack, 3 days is a great accomplishment! Congratulations. 

Day 4 – If you like, add another day to your potato hack, if not, today is your first post-hack day. Eat what you like on this day, but I want you to notice how that first bite of food tastes. Your taste buds and the reward centers of your brain have been numbed by 3 days of bland potatoes. Most likely, you woke up not hungry and, in fact, hungry for potatoes. A great first post-hack meal is hash browns, only this time cooked with a bit of oil and spiced with seasoned-salt. Your taste buds will sparkle as the spices and oil-crisped potatoes slide over your tongue. Have a small piece of chocolate or an orange, you will think you’ve never had anything so tasty.

Results – If you weighed yourself on Day 1, you should find yourself 2-5 pounds lighter on Day 4. Your clothes will feel looser; people may notice a leanness in your face. But best of all, you will have an appreciation for food. A respect for yourself.

If there’s time before your big event, do the potato hack again after a couple days of normal eating. Try one of the variations this time and compare results. Two 3 day hacks a week apart are just perfect for a high school reunion. When people ask how you stay in such good shape, tell ‘em, “The potato hack!”

First Time Dieters – Twenty to 100+ Pounds

This is for the first time dieters who woke up one day and realized they need to lose some weight. Or possibly the person whose doctor said, “Lose some weight or else!” I love first-time dieters, especially when their head is not full of stupid advice. The potato hack is all you’ll need to make you, and your doctor, very happy. But, you must learn to eat right! If you’ve been on a diet of Mickey D’s for lunch and Taco Bell’s “4th meal” for a late night snack, you have a long, long road ahead. The potato diet will help you lose weight and keep it off, but you, my friend, need to learn how to eat.

The Plan:

You need a whole new relationship with food, but you don’t need to become afraid to eat. Examine your diet. Are you eating enough fruits and vegetables? Are you eating lots of processed foods? Are you a sugar-holic? It’s tough to navigate this on your own, so download a couple of diet books. Dr. Phil’s 20/20 diet plan is pretty sound, so is the one encouraged by Jack Lalanne in “Live Young Forever.” Stop short of buying into the trademarked diets. If you need to buy special food for the diet to work, it won’t work. Don’t fall for the Vegan doublespeak. If you ask me how I eat, I would say that I’m a “vegan who eats meat and a paleo who eats wheat.” Getting all religious about a diet plan is the wrong mindset.

Get going on a diet, any diet, and see how you get along. Nearly any diet out there is better than how most Americans eat. The potato hack can help you establish your relationship with food by showing you how delicious real foods are. The potato hack also shows you that “cutting carbs” is a ridiculous idea, especially when wholesome foods such as corn, rice, and potatoes are included in the tally.

Week 1 – Once you’ve made up your mind to lose the extra weight you are carrying, there’s no going back. Use this first week to clean house. Get rid of all the junk food and greasy snacks in your house and desk drawers. At some point, buy a 20-pound bag of high-quality, preferably organic, potatoes. Make a couple of the potato dishes from the recipe section and have a couple potato-only meals during the week. Baby steps! Slow and easy wins this race.

Week 2 – Try to do a 1-day potato hack. Eat potatoes for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Still hungry? Snack on a potato.

Week 3 through 8 – Try eating “to plan” for the diet you’ve settled in on. Learn to shop “around the outside” of the grocery store, avoiding the inner aisles filled with processed foods and snacks. Don’t bounce back and forth between diet plans, such as low carb and vegetarian. If the plan seems too good to be true, it is. If it seems too difficult, it won’t work. This is also the time to evaluate your fitness levels, sleep habits, and stress. A good diet plan will encompass all of these core tenants.

Week 9(ish) – Sometime after you’ve been eating better for a couple of months, take note of your weight and how you feel. Has two months of the new diet helped you? If you are happy with your new eating style, try a 3-day potato hack to really get things moving. If you are consistently losing 1-3 pounds per week, don’t bother with the potato hack. If you’ve gained weight, re-evaluate everything you are doing.

Weeks 10-26 – After about 6 months of steady dieting, you should be nearing your goal weight. If, along the way, you experience stalls in weight loss that last more than a week or two, throw in a potato hack, as many days as you can stand. This is also a perfect time to try the many variations I showed you. Try some potato-only days or potatoes for breakfast and lunch days. The worst mind-set to get into is one of failure and defeat. If your health seems to be deteriorating, go see a doctor. Maybe you have a health problem.

Weeks 26-52 – As a formerly overweight person, you are hopefully now in “maintenance mode.” Be mindful of slipping back into your old habits. Use the potato hack here and there to keep you at your target weight. You may find that your goal weight was too low, and you’re better off a bit heavier. Develop life-long eating and fitness habits. Walk every day. Do some strength training.

ResultsThe potato hack is not a diet, it’s a simple hack to help your diet be more effective. As you’ve read here, the potato hack uses many facets of metabolism and weight loss to help you reset your body and mind to be more receptive to lasting weight loss. Don’t be surprised if sometime over the course of the year people start whispering about you, “Is he sick?” It’s a real shame, but in our society, it seems the only people who lose weight to any degree are the terminally ill. You’ll also be asked if you’ve “had the surgery.” Tell them all: “Nope! Just potato hackin’”

Weight Maintenance

The potato hack is second to none for effortlessly maintaining your weight through the years. The goal of every person who has issues with easily gaining weight should be life-long maintenance of their weight in a 5 to 10-pound range. Often when people gain a few pounds over a year or so, it goes unnoticed. After several years, and several pants sizes later, you find that losing those extra 10-20 pounds is not an easy endeavor. The best trick is to not let it get that far out of hand in the first place.

We should all have a subjective measure of our health be it numbers on a scale or the size of our clothes. Scales can be misleading, but if you have a rough idea of what you weigh when you felt healthiest, your weight can be a good indicator of your maintenance activities. Some people do not get along well with scales, they can’t handle seeing daily and weekly fluctuations and it causes undue grief. If this is you, throw your scale in the trash and use clothing or a “pinch test” to judge your weight.

The plan:

Here’s where last month’s the variations shine. Once you are at or near your goal weight, try a 2 to 3-day potato hack and see how you respond. Once you’ve done it, plan on using one of the variations periodically for a couple days a month, or even just once a week. Many people will find they can simply eat whatever they like (ehm, within reason) as long as they do a potato hack 2-3 days a month. You won’t see big drops on the scale, and may not even notice anything, but you are indeed doing something!

A day of eating only potatoes creates a nice calorie deficit and burns a few ounces of fat. It’s always these “few ounces” that sneak up on us. The potato hack is such an easy solution. It’s not expensive, in fact, cheaper than your normal diet, I’ll wager. One of my favorite weight maintenance hacks is “Potatoes by Day.” PBD is a hack on another hack called “Vegan Before 6.” In VB6, you simply eat nothing but plants during the day and a normal dinner. This is perfectly suited to substituting potatoes for “plants.” Just because it’s a plant does not mean it will lead to weight loss. For instance, if your VB6 days contain lots of bread, nuts, and fruit it’s quite likely your caloric load will be higher. Good vegan diets require a lot of planning and forethought, eating potatoes does not.


The Potato Hack, with its many variations, should allow you to easily keep your weight in a 5 to 10-pound band year-round, year in and year out. Some like to “hack” before and after the holidays, at the end of summer, end of winter, or whenever you find you’ve gained a couple pounds. In this regard, no one can say the potato hack is a fad diet. Here we are using The Potato Hack to simply keep our metabolism, gut health, and weight in check.


If you just need to lose a couple pounds, a lot of pounds, or want to keep weight off long-term, The Potato Hack may be just what you need.

Don’t believe me?  See what others are saying:

The Potato Hack…for Rapid Weight Loss (Visual Impact Fitness) Part 1 and Part 2

Can Eating More Potatoes Help You Save Money and Lose Weight? (Simple Dollar)

The Potato Hack Diet (Critical MAS)


140 Comments on “Potato Diets for Weight Loss or Maintenance”

  1. Soule72 June 4, 2016 at 4:02 am #

    Can sweet potatoes be used or does it have to be white? Can this be effective for people with high cortisol or adrenal issues?


  2. Sara July 13, 2016 at 12:28 pm #

    I’m about to start day two of the hack. Yesterday I ate boiled red potatoes when I felt REALLY hungry, so that means I ate boiled red potatoes ALL DAY LONG. If potatoes really are as satiating as claimed, why do I feel like my stomach is eating itself 60-90 minutes after I eat 3 potatoes. I don’t mind a little hunger, I’ve been LCHF for years and I don’t generally eat very often, but this is ridiculous.

    Does it get better?


  3. Sara July 13, 2016 at 2:49 pm #

    (My comment didn’t post, does it need moderator approval?)

    I’m about to start day two of the hack. Yesterday I ate boiled red potatoes when I felt REALLY hungry, so that means I ate boiled red potatoes ALL DAY LONG. If potatoes really are as satiating as claimed, why do I feel like my stomach is eating itself 60-90 minutes after I eat 3 potatoes. I don’t mind a little hunger, I’ve been LCHF for years and I don’t generally eat very often, but this is ridiculous.

    Does it get better?


    • Tim Steele August 5, 2016 at 6:03 pm #

      Sorry, did not see this comment earlier! Did it get better?


  4. Yvonne July 25, 2016 at 12:26 pm #

    Hi there. I had been struggling to lose weight all along but just 3 days last week made me lose 2.6kgs – meaning the potato hack does work.My question is can I do it again after a 3 day break and do I expect the same amount of weight loss?


    • Tim Steele August 5, 2016 at 6:05 pm #

      Yes! Please do it as often as you like. Lots of people doing the potato hack 3-5 days per month to keep gut working well, reduce inflammation, and keep weight in check. For weight loss, 3-5 days every week or other week works wonders!


  5. Elisabeth Lee August 5, 2016 at 5:38 pm #

    Hi Tim. I started my first hack this morning. My husband has kidney problems do cannot eat potatoes due to the potassium. Would rice be able to be used instead for a short hack? I know this has no substitutions for the white potato, but would a rice hack have any value? Thanks for your time.


    • Tim Steele August 5, 2016 at 6:07 pm #

      A rice hack will work, but people find they easily overeat rice, so some care must be taken to keep calories in the 900-1200 range or so. Generally people can eat potatoes at will (ad libitum) and never exceed 1200 calories.


  6. Mike Callahan August 15, 2016 at 4:58 pm #

    I am on day 8. I have eaten only potatoes. Drinking waterblack coffee ,and unsweetened ice tea. Feel pretty good down 13 pounds. No aches, my asthma has not flared up since either. I am going for the full 14 days I think. At this point I am day by day. My diet was really bad. At 55 I needed a kick in the was and this by far is the easiest I have ever done.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Noah Strawn August 17, 2016 at 2:44 pm #

    I have a simple question. Is it a problem if I have been on th Hack for 2 days, but I dont find myself truly hungry. Im eating around 2 1/2 pounds per day, and im going for weight loss. But I have yet to feel or even think about how hungry I am.


    • Tim Steele August 17, 2016 at 3:38 pm #

      That’s the magic of the hack! Calorie restriction without hunger. This is what the whole HCG craze was about, with HCG, the person gets an injection of a hormone that allows you to eat very little without feeling hungry, however many are saying it is very unsafe.

      The potato hack is very safe, and many tell me it works better than HCG to keep hunger away.

      Thanks for writing!


  8. Anita August 22, 2016 at 11:27 pm #

    I’ve just completed my fourth weekly potato hack! Read your book in one day and implemented a program the next! I’m excited about this approach and have a few questions. Does it disturb the resistance starch by re-heating at too high a temperature? Also, I noticed some potato recipes are freshly cooked (not cooked, cooled, reheated) – are those really OK during a 3 day hack? Thanks so much!


    • Tim Steele August 22, 2016 at 11:32 pm #

      Congrats, and thanks!

      When potato hacking, do not give RS a second thought. Just eat the potatoes in any way you like. The RS “hacks” of cooking/cooling/reheating are more for your normal eating days to increase RS. While potato hacking, you are most likely getting more fiber and RS than you will ever get normally, no matter how the spuds are prepared.

      Reheating normally does not destroy the RS. There is a point where it can be degraded, but not with normal cooking.



  9. Jeffhalmos August 23, 2016 at 4:21 am #

    Myself, my wife, and our two daughters are doing the potato hack, inspired by Penn Jillette and Ray Cronise. My daughter read that all that’s really missing is B12 and supplements can take care of that. Any thoughts on this?


    • Tim Steele August 23, 2016 at 4:33 am #

      I should have written more about the B-12 issue in the book, for sure. The deal with B-12, it takes a long time, years, to deplete B-12 from your body, it is recycled many times. Many vegans do not take B-12 supplements, relying on blood labs, only to find that they suddenly are having issues related to B-12 deficiency after several years.

      So the potato hack for a week or so is no problem. There are no vitamins or minerals that you need to ingest on a daily basis, otherwise we would not be able to fast for so long. People routinely do “water fasts” for several weeks and it’s considered healthy by most people. It surprised me when people started worrying about vitamin and mineral deficiencies after 3-5 days on just spuds.

      I like to keep potato hacks in the 3-5 day range, interrupted by healthy eating. This ensures all vitamin needs are met long-term. I’m not sure how Cronise/Penn are advising people. I believe I heard 2 weeks? Shuld be fine to potato hack 2 weeks straight, even a month. But the protocol I like is 3-5 days, the vast majority of people find this schedule very easy and they can still socialize on the weekend, lol.

      Good luck to you all!


  10. Brittany August 25, 2016 at 6:06 pm #

    I started the PBD variation and my weight hasn’t changed, as I type this I am on day 4 and I am down 0.7lb…. I am doing 8-9 oz of cooked and cooled white potato for breakfast and lunch, and then eat a normal paleo/primal meal for dinner at around 7pm. My gut response has significantly improved but I am wondering why I can’t seem to take any weight off. I was looking for a 5 day period with a 3lb weight loss. I’m doing moderate exercise- I walked 2 miles briskly yesterday, and day 1 I did a 4 mile hike at 5,000ft elevation. I’m moody, hungry, and generally my husband doesn’t want to be around me because I’m hangry all the time. Am I not eating enough? Have I put my body into starvation mode and consequently holding on to weight? HELP!


    • Tim Steele August 25, 2016 at 6:52 pm #

      Hi Brittany! Great blog you have…I hope to live in Hawaii one day.

      The variation you are doing, Potatoes by Day, is more of a long-term weight maintenance, slow weight loss, variation. I have been getting overwhelming positive response to this variation, so much, in fact, that I wondered if I shouldn’t have just called the book, Potatoes by Day. But the biggest, quickest losses are from those doing the basic “hack” of potatoes to satiety for 3-5 days, and no other food those days.

      It looks as if you are in great health, active, and just a few pounds above where you want to be. I’d say that if you enjoy PBD, keep at it for a month or so, most days, and see if it eventually gets those stubborn 5 pounds. Or, dig a bit deeper and do the basic hack, just eating potatoes, and “white-knuckle” the hangry-ness.

      It’s quite doubtful that you have gone into any kind of starvation mode, most likely you are losing fat, but you do not have any excess inflammation so you are not seeing the big scale losses like people who are extremely overweight and carry lots of inflammation.

      Good luck!


      • Brittany August 25, 2016 at 10:09 pm #

        Thanks, Tim! I’m going to eat “normally” over the weekend and do the strict hack for 5 days next week. And I will give myself the liberty of eating hashbrowns with home rendered duck or pig fat for breakfast. I haven’t re-done measurements yet, I’ll do that tomorrow on my last day of PBD. Scale doesn’t always show the work being done 🙂 thanks for the insight!!


    • Mary June 21, 2017 at 6:19 am #

      I did the 3 day potato hack a week ago (*Not PBD), was extremely hungry and had nausea, headaches and joint pain. I also lost no weight in the 3 day hack. Unlike you, I did not exercise.
      I know that I have a tendency toward adrenal fatigue. Would be interested to hear from anyone who has had the same issues.


  11. Jeanne August 25, 2016 at 9:44 pm #

    I’m doing the potato hack, week 2 for me. I have failed so miserably at all other attempts over the last year. I can already tell my belly is going down. I’m thrilled! I am getting ready for a new me. I can’t wait to get where I am more comfortable with myself. To me this seems miraculous! Yeah potato hack!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Tim Steele August 25, 2016 at 10:22 pm #

      “And I will give myself the liberty of eating hashbrowns with home rendered duck or pig fat for breakfast…”

      Just a little, please! With a good non-stick pan, you’ll be surprised how well hash browns turn out. Just cook them at a bit lower heat than normal, and put a lid on to steam them through. Salt and pepper, and you won’t miss the fat.

      Also, one of the favorites of lots of people is simple mashed potatoes. Maybe because they are not dry? Use chicken, beef, or a bone broth in place of the milk you’d normally use. We like them better this way normally, now. Broth adds minimal calories and no fat, but gives a great taste and some moisture.

      Hashbrowns and Kona coffee for breakfast.
      Mashed potatoes for lunch.
      Big pile of oven fries dipped in Wao Nahele hot sauce for dinner..



  12. Richard Blum August 31, 2016 at 7:58 pm #

    Hey Tim….Starting the Hack tomorrow September 1. I’m about 100 pounds overweight and need to get it back off. The weight is putting too much pressure on my lower spine in which steroids are injected, due to one to many helicopter crashes in Vietnam in the late 60’s. So, I’m in my late 60’s, obese, and ready to make the necessary changes. Thanks man. I’ll let you know how it goes, as it goes.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Steven M. Cherry September 16, 2016 at 12:28 am #

    I’m starting a 5 day hack (my first) today, and so far so good. I did have a question, though. After reading through the book and the plan, I saw that your recommended drinks for accompanying the hack are water, tea, or coffee. During the day, that works great as I’m a big fan of Iced Tea, and my wife helpfully brews up many gallons for me each week.

    However, in the evenings I really enjoy a glass of wine with dinner and another while watching TV with my wife before bed. I don’t know how this will play into the hack in a positive or negative way and just wanted to throw the question out to you. What’s your position on wine with dinner during the hack? Too many extra non-potato calories? Do you think the alcohol will interfere with the process?

    Thanks for the book, enjoyed it and am looking forward to the results.


    • Tim Steele September 16, 2016 at 1:46 am #

      Do your first 5 days “my way” and a later 5 days however you like. Easy peasy. I think wine will not be good, but who knows? Maybe it will work for you. Let us know!

      Oh, by the way, I am on Day 15 of a 30-day extended hack. The first 3 days were the worst, in terms of wanting to eat other things, but now it’s just a normal thing. The trick is to find 2-3 ways of cooking potatoes that you can make quickly and enjoy eating. For me, it’s air-fryer french fries, hashbrowns, and re-fried mashed.

      Good luck!


    • Brittany September 16, 2016 at 8:54 pm #

      Steven dude, I hope you are drinking decaf iced tea. Too much caffeine can be a bad thing, plus tea has a high concentration of oxalate, one of the key chemicals that leads to the formation of kidney stones. Drink water, when you’re thirsty. Add a little lime or lemon or both.


      • Steven Cherry September 16, 2016 at 9:52 pm #

        It’s mostly herbal iced tea. Caffeine and I don’t get along at all. One cup of regular coffee and I’ve got the shakes for a whole day. My wife’s iced tea doesn’t affect me at all that way. My current favorite is a blend including fresh rose hips.

        Appreciate the concern, though!


        • Brittany September 16, 2016 at 10:02 pm #

          LOL, Steven. I was like OMG that is a lot of tea!


  14. Alba September 18, 2016 at 7:47 pm #

    Hello Tim,
    I did two rounds of the 3 day potato-only hack. I lost weight but gained half of what was lost when I resumed eating “normal food”. Any ideas on how to control this? Thank you…


    • Tim Steele September 18, 2016 at 7:50 pm #

      The best way is to just keep ahead of it by doing repeated potato hacks until you are at your goal weight, then a few more until you can stay there. Many find that even one day a week of potatoes helps them to maintain their weight.

      If you have a substantial amount of weight to lose, you can expect some regain between hacks, but you are looking for a long, downward trend.


  15. Brittany September 20, 2016 at 12:02 am #

    Alba, I gained some of my weight back too, but I am pretty sure it is my wine and muscle. I eat paleo/primal so regularly anti-inflammatory but then I do drink wine. I’m trying the hack out again and when I come off the 5 days I will not add wine in and see how it goes. I am also triathlon training so could do without the wine for a while… What is your “normal” diet?

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Steven Cherry September 20, 2016 at 4:31 pm #

    First 5 day hack results.

    I started on Thursday, but forgot to weigh in on that day, so I don’t have a complete chart, but here’s what I do have:

    Thursday – n/a
    Friday – 97.4kg (214.7lbs)
    Saturday – 94.9kg (209.2lbs)
    Sunday – 94.8kg (208.9lbs)
    Monday – 94.4kg (208.1lbs) – last full day of the hack
    Tuesday – 94.0kg (207.2lbs) – first day after the hack

    My target weight is 200 even, or 195 if I’m aggressive, so I’m not far off. I’m very curious to see how eating “normally” will cause the numbers to change. My plan is to do the hack about 2 times per month and see how it goes.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Tim Steele September 20, 2016 at 5:23 pm #

    Great! I like to see people aggressively get to goal weight, and then passively stay there by using periodic potato hacks.

    FWIW, I’m on day 20 of a 30 day “challenge” eating only potatoes. Lost about 10 pounds so far, but eating far more potatoes than I would in the 3-5 day shorter hacks. But actually, I’m finding it really easy to do. So, perhaps if you really want top kick things up and hit that goal weight, just eat potatoes until you are there. And, periodic breaks do not seem to hamper the results. 3-5 days per week for a month is really good for serious weight loss.


  18. Laura September 27, 2016 at 10:05 pm #

    Hi! I’m a very active 30-year-old who began T4 treatment about 3 months ago for hypothyroid, and I’ve been trying everything to lose the 15-ish pounds I gained in the year before starting treatment. I’ve always been active (3-6 miles a day of walking + daily 60-90 minute workouts of some combo of HIIT, weightlifting, cardio), and I’ve been extra vigilant about remaining active throughout these past several months. I’ve been doing the Every Other Day Diet for 5 weeks now and I’ve only lost about 3 pounds, which is very disheartening to me, when I stumbled on the Potato Hack online! I’m planning to start my very first hack in the next couple days (can’t wait to go visit Dad and pickup some home-grown potatoes, yum!) I appreciate any advice, tips, or tricks. Excited to check back with results!


    • Tim Steele September 27, 2016 at 10:19 pm #

      Hi Laura – I can commiserate, those last 10 are indeed the hardest to lose. 3 pounds over 5 weeks of eating “mostly normal” is not so bad. If you really want to go for it, try back-to-back 5 day potato hacks for a month, or even a month straight, with a few “sanity” breaks strategically placed throughout, ie. don’t worry about being 100% for the month, more like 94.5%, lol.

      For long-term maintenance, monthly 3-5 day hacks work wonders.

      Good luck!


  19. Brittany September 28, 2016 at 2:32 am #

    Is anyone else weighing out their portion sizes throughout the day? Or do you just give yourself a general weight to eat for the day?


    • Tim Steele September 28, 2016 at 3:50 am #

      The goal is to just eat until you are full without worrying about portion sizes or amounts per day. That said, most people find they can remain satisfied eating 2-5 pounds of potatoes per day (weight before cooking). I like to use the figure of 3-5 pounds per day for planning purposes, but if you eat more or less, that’s fine, too.


    • Laura October 12, 2016 at 12:29 am #

      So after some poor planning on my first hack (ended up resorting to sweet potatoes, haha) I’m having a second go at the 3-day hack. I felt pretty great the first time around, but for whatever reason I thought it was ok to add ketchup and salsa to some of my potatoes, but this time I am trying to hold off on the condiments and stick to sea salt, dried herbs, and occasional Bragg’s liquid aminos. I am and have been a vegan for 12 years, gluten-free for about 5, I eat a minimal amount of processed foods with at least half my standard diet consisting of raw produce, but I have to say, this potato-only diet is HARD. I haven’t been able to give up the small amount of unsweetened low-cal almond milk in my coffee and tea, and I am dying to put some organic ketchup or homemade cashew cheese on my potatoes! I don’t know why this is such a struggle for me. Any tips to help me get through this? Also, would I be better off sticking to a more strict 3-day hack or slightly modifying (ketchup please!) for 5 days?


      • Tim Steele October 12, 2016 at 1:05 am #

        Laura – Having just come off a 30 day hack, I do not feel much sympathy for you, lol. Just kidding…I do! I know it’s hard, but it flipping works, so hang in there. Have you read the book? Ketchup is OK. Cashew cheese…maybe. Actually, I think it’s safe to say that if you eat near-zero fat, as long as potatoes are 95% of your daily caloric intake, you will see success.

        As far as a strict 3 day vs less strict 5 day, I’d have to say that either will work. A much less strict 7-30 day hack might even be better, depending on your goals. Any day in which potatoes comprise 95+% of your food is a day of weight loss. How you string them together and your interpretation of “95%” is where the real magic can happen!

        Good luck!


  20. Bobbie October 8, 2016 at 5:36 pm #

    This is the first time I’ve seen this page. The Spudtember challenge sounded interesting, will you be doing any more of that?
    One question after reading your book: do you think if a person was doing PBD, they could have their “normal” meal at lunchtime and return to spuds for dinner, or does that defeat the purpose?


    • Tim Steele October 8, 2016 at 5:41 pm #

      I’m think I will probably do a 30-day hack every year in October. September was very inconvenient for me as my garden is in full harvest mode, but by October, it’s a frozen heap…and my potatoes are harvested and ready to eat.

      I think potato dinners would also work. The weight loss may be slower than full-on all-potato for 3-5 days, but any meal that contains just plain potatoes is a very good way to keep weight in check and drop a few pounds long-term.


    • Laura October 12, 2016 at 1:57 am #

      Tim, you have no idea how encouraging that was to hear! Even just reading that, I feel relieved and more confident in making this hack a success. I think the hardest part is feeling like you’re not doing something “just right” or feeling overwhelmed by restrictions, but I definitely feel a lot better about continuing and giving it my all, whatever that may be. Thanks!!


  21. Stacey Posey November 4, 2016 at 2:08 pm #

    Hi Tim,
    Just read the book and “tried” to do a one day trial hack yesterday. I am pretty sure where I went wrong, but I’d like your 2 cents so I can start again without the following problem happening.

    I bought and used a variety of potatoes. Except for one meal, I didn’t completely peal all the potatoes. The meal I did peel the potatoes was fine tasting, but the others had a horrid bitter taste, almost like metal. I recognized the taste I had previously tastes at times eating potatoes in my life, but never knew why.

    The bitterness was so bad I could not continue eating. So of course I googled “bitter potato taste” and looks like that is common when the potatos appear to look good, not green, etc. But have actually been sitting for months in light and therefore have this toxic bitterness taste to them.

    I did have just a bit of diarrea last night and this morning.

    I have learned: I SHOULD HAVE PEELED MY POTATOES LIKE YOU REPEAT IN THE BOOK. I guess I just grew up thinking those skins held a little more nutrition.

    I look forward to you reply!
    Stacey Posey


    • Tim Steele November 6, 2016 at 3:02 pm #

      I always recommend getting the best quality potato you can find, preferably organic, and then peel or not depending on how the potatoes look. Clean, smooth skin is usually fine. Skin with tints of green or lots of blemishes/pits should be peeled.

      Liked by 1 person

  22. paralyzedcitizen November 6, 2016 at 5:19 am #

    My first 3-day hack gave me a 1-2 pound loss, but for the past 3 hacks I’ve done I have lost no weight whatsoever. I’ve been sticking to 2-4 pounds plain white potatoes with salt and herbs, coffee, kombucha, and water, and keeping up my daily exercise which equates to 9-10 miles of walking. Shouldn’t I be losing SOME weight??


    • Tim Steele November 6, 2016 at 3:00 pm #

      Could you tell us a bit about yourself? Age, weight, goals, medical problems, normal eating style, etc.


      • paralyzedcitizen November 7, 2016 at 1:23 am #

        I’m 30 and currently a student. 5’8″ and 145 pounds, but I would like to be at 135 (or of course I’d be happy with 130). I consider myself fairly athletic and I eat a gluten-free vegan diet. I never eat breakfast and it is not uncommon to skip lunch as well. I suffered from ulcerative colitis in the past, but have been in remission for years and don’t take anything for it. I am currently being treated for hypothyroid (100mcg levothyroxine). I gain weight very easily and it is difficult for me to lose.


  23. Tim Steele November 7, 2016 at 2:12 am #

    I’m guessing female, and not paralyzed, lol. OK, I’d say the answer is as simple as 2-4 pounds of potatoes being a bit too much. Try sticking to the lower end, but then again, you do not have that much to lose, and your diet looks good. You probably suffer very little from the inflammation that plagues most SAD eaters, so your weight loss is not going to be dramatic. Sorry I don’t have any better advice.

    If you’d like to lose 10-15 pounds, try sticking to the potato diet for 3-4 weeks and see what happens. Your weight sounds stubborn.


  24. Tatjana Qadada November 11, 2016 at 5:17 am #

    Hello. I heard about the potato hack from my trainer. I also read your book. It was very informative.
    I’ve done the potato hack 3 days per week for two weeks Lost 4 pounds. but am now back up to 243 lbs. I had to sit out a week. I’m 6’2″. My ideal weight is 190-195 pounds. I lift weights 2x weekly but don’t work out inbetween except for occasional walking on the weekend.
    My question to you is on my off days can I add raw potatoes to my smoothies. My daughter said that I shouldn’t because I’m assuming for the solinoin (sp?) the “poison” in the skin. Or should I just choose potato starch from the bakery isle.


    • Tim Steele November 11, 2016 at 9:30 pm #

      Keep it up! Raw potatoes blended in a smoothie are probably better than plain potato starch as they contain more nutrients. Peels are fine, but many prefer to peel. Makes no difference. If potatoes look green or dirty, I always peel.


      • Jimbo January 8, 2017 at 10:21 am #

        Tim, sometimes I get baked potatoes, to go, at a local BBQ place. They come wrapped in foil and the skin peels right off. At home I can’t seem to find a way to do a baked potato and have the skin peel easily, is there a trick? I really like the texture of baked vs boiled.


        • Tim Steele January 8, 2017 at 11:22 am #

          The type of potato, cooking temps and methods make the differences. You just need to experiment, or better, ask the chef how he does it, lol. I’d bet they cook them in a hot oven without the tin foil, then wrap after they are cooked. Cooking in tin foil makes a more steamed potato than baked. Did you see the recipe section in my book, lots of good baking recipes.


  25. Srinath January 6, 2017 at 2:57 pm #

    Thanks for the awesome site. I actually used to make baked potato plates by thin slicing potatoes and repeatedly toasting them in a toaster oven, freezing, repeat till they all turn crisp. Can I still do that ? is that similar to boiling them ? Also any spices OK to use ? salt, red pepper, black pepper, garlic etc etc. Or how about veggies that don’t have fat, broccoli and onions ?


    • Tim Steele January 7, 2017 at 8:17 am #

      That’s a fine way to cook potatoes. Most spices are fine, but added veggies are discouraged (see: http://amzn.to/2i4hn34).


      • Srinath January 7, 2017 at 1:35 pm #

        Great, thanks. general concept is, no dietary fat = the liver will need to access body fat for processing starch, and being calorie deficient, so it has to expend all of it and more – am I close ? Here is a twist, I have been pretty severely Intermittent fasting, anywhere from 24 hr to 20 days for 4 months now, on a 9 dayer now, then a 10 day and an 8 day is planned. Then I’ll likely go to a 60 hr eat schedule for ~2 months. I’m already in the mid teens for BF%. I’d be in the 6-7% range by the time I arrive at the potato hack spot. I’d likely do it for 5-15 days before going back to the diet that got me from 238-219 lbs last year. You have any gotcha’s in my situation ?


        • Tim Steele January 7, 2017 at 1:47 pm #

          Wow! That’s a huge drop. 6% BF is way too low! If you are at mid-teens, why not just try to maintain and focus on building some muscle? Going sub-10% is pure vanity and I cannot imagine a healthy pursuit. Most of the male models you see that have single-digit body fat also have gut problems, from what I’ve heard.


          • Srinath January 7, 2017 at 2:44 pm #

            I’m trying to lose all the visceral fat, because I’ve read its tied to a lot of health problems including diabetes (and in June I got a pre-diabetes diagnosis) so I wanted to lose all of that. I am at this point getting rid of the grabbable fat, and I plan on getting to 135 or so and then stabilizing @ 145, and maybe do potato hack when I hit 150 and eat normally till that point.


            • Srinath January 7, 2017 at 5:04 pm #

              I have dry cooked potatoes and eaten them a plenty, but I am reading about lectins – in raw potatoes. Is that a big concern ? how can I alleviate that – remove the skin ? I could remove the skin and cook it along with the other potatoes so I get the nutrition in the skins. What removes lectins without damaging the Resistant starches ? Thanks.


              • Tim Steele January 7, 2017 at 6:04 pm #

                Lectins are not a concern in my opinion. Way overblown. Just eat potatoes however you like.


                • Srinath January 8, 2017 at 3:19 am #

                  Thanks. Its about 2 months before I get to the potato hack.
                  But I’ll post back about it. Thanks.


  26. Michael Brown January 19, 2017 at 7:32 am #

    I heard of the potato hack from the Critical MAS posts and read Tim’s book — great!

    I’m 6’3″, bouncing around 205lbs, slight high BP that’s controlled by weight and exercise (I use kettlebells and walking) and a diuretic. I do intermittent fasting through the week (skip breakfast) with occasional 20-22 hr fasts. I want to lose belly fat, as my doctor has pointed that out to me as problem given my family history.

    I aimed to do the 3-day hack this week with a bag of Yukon Golds and a bag of small reds. I had been eating cold boiled for lunch and in the afternoon at work, and microwaved for supper.

    I got through to the afternoon of the second day before I cracked like an egg. Got a bag of peanuts from the vending machine and ate a protein bar. I was a little light-headed the first afternoon, then fuzzy-headed and light-headed the second day, and I could not stop thinking about food. I went to my potatoes for a snack and the smell of them just repulsed me; so I’m thinking boredom played into this and perhaps eating too many of them. It was a temporary feeling (I ate them later that night). It was an odd reaction as I’m used to fasting and I can separate hunger from cravings, or thought I could.

    Also: I’d had a bad sleep night after the 1st day (awake from 2-430am), but slept better the second night. My wife had made a little salmon and green beans for her supper so she let me share some of that for my supper on the second night. It tasted really really good.

    Anyway — I did lose about 3lbs from the morning of the 1st day, went to the bathroom a lot more, and feel fine today (eating normally today, which would have been my 3rd day; no lightheaded or fuzziness). I started at 204.6 lbs and this morning was 201.2 lbs. I haven’t broken through the 203lb barrier for a long time, so this was a big thing for me.

    I’ll try this again later, but will do just one day of potatoes or one bag, or just eat them during the day. I like the simplicity of just potatoes — makes it harder to talk myself into cheating!

    Also — having to address the concerns of my wife, who sees this as potentially unhealthy and had little confidence I could get through the 3 days. So I had to eat a little crow in addition to potatoes, but as I reminded her, this was an experiment and I intend to continue experimenting till I get it right. Many of my current diet and exercise habits were equally wobbly at the start.

    Sorry for the long post. Neat idea, good book — it’s just this little experiment didn’t work as smoothly for me as I’d hoped. Will continue experimenting.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Tim Steele January 19, 2017 at 12:58 pm #

      Thanks for the note Michael! This is very typical what you describe. Now that you have some confidence and know your weaknesses, you can try it again later. For me, the only way I can enjoy potatoes for a week is to make French fries, hashbrowns, and mashed potatoes. You’ll also find that matching the variety of the potato with the cooking method is HUGE in making palatable potatoes.

      Before you try again, experiment finding different ways of cooking the spuds so that you do not mind eating them. Some good quality Russets, baked in the oven, stored in the fridge, then reheated in the microwave a very good, especially with some spices and a bit of hot broth of they are too dry. Your imagination is the limit.

      But, it works for most, and the weight loss can be dramatic. And it will probably lower your BP, too, at least while doing the potato diet, which maybe will give you clues on what’s wrong with your present diet (vending machines, bars, etc.).

      Liked by 1 person

  27. Charles Jackson January 23, 2017 at 8:27 pm #

    This is something new I came across, a “Potato Diet for Weight Loss”. Really interesting post.


  28. suzanne January 28, 2017 at 1:31 pm #

    My friend has been doing the potato hack for months with great success but I have not fared as well. The first time I tried it I became ill with indigestion and threw up. I assumed it was maybe a dodgy potato. A month and a half later I thought I’d give it another go and again got sick, this time I had indigestion, burping (I rarely burp or have digestive issues) then had diarrhea for the rest of the evening which was pretty tricky as I was not at home. Day 2 I ate nothing. Day 3 I tried a few boiled potatoes and started burping again. I am going to start eating again and just accept that this plan doesn’t apparently work for everyone. I reached out to my friend who is losing weight and feeling great for advice and he said his wife has had a similar experience to mine, that she has twice tried but has become sick on day one each time. I wonder if you have any thoughts on the matter? I am generally healthy (except for autoimmune thyroiditis and arthritis) vegan middle aged woman. I have had great results with the master cleanse in the past. Not that I lost weight on it but it seemed to reduce inflammation and reset my system somehow. I don’t generally feel hungry and most people think I don’t eat much. Overeating isn’t my problem but inflammation is , I think. That’s why I wanted to give this a go. Thanks


    • Tim Steele January 28, 2017 at 4:46 pm #

      Do you regularly eat potatoes with meals? How long have you been vegan?


      • Suzanne January 29, 2017 at 4:50 pm #

        Yes. I love potatoes. Another reason I wanted to try this diet! I have never really been a meat eater. For years I was a mostly vegetarian. I ate eggs and fish occasionally. But 17 years ago when I met my partner and he was vegan I transitioned. But I’ve been vegan and vegetarian over the years.


        • Tim Steele January 30, 2017 at 8:56 am #

          Well, then, it boggles my mind how a person could regularly eat potatoes, but a potato-only meal makes them ill. What happens if you eat a baked potato by itself? Maybe try, but keep individual servings on the smaller side, ie. eat less, more often.


  29. bayjay2 January 28, 2017 at 7:22 pm #

    Hi Tim, day one here for me, I need to lose about 10kg, in Australia we go by kilos. I haven’t read your book as I only found this info yesterday so will as soon as I can. I had 240 grams dry fried potatoes with a little seasoned salt for late breakfast and 410 grams of potoatoes cooked with low salt chicken stock in an oven roasting tin in the outside barbecue oven, 40 degrees Celsius here today so too hot to put the oven on in the house, I made three times that amount so enough for two more meals, will try dry roasted potato wedges in the barbecue tonight with just a pump spray of olive oil, maybe a tiny amount of tomato sauce and seasoned salt, I am looking forward to that, well day one and easy peasy so far though early days yet, thanks again


    • Tim Steele January 28, 2017 at 7:45 pm #

      Good luck!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Janice Young January 31, 2017 at 9:38 pm #

        Thanks, I have done 3 days and didn’t find any problems, I wasn’t craving anything else, so today I am doing my fourth day, I lost 1.2 kg which is 2.7 pounds so almost 3 pounds, I want some vegetables so tomorrow I will have a stir fry


      • bayjay2 January 31, 2017 at 9:42 pm #

        Thanks, I have done 3 days and didn’t find any problems, I wasn’t craving anything else, so today I am doing my fourth day, I lost 1.2 kg which is 2.7 pounds so almost 3 pounds, I want some vegetables so tomorrow I will have a stir fry


  30. Teddy February 3, 2017 at 7:53 am #

    Hi Tim, I figured I would post this since it may be the case with someone else too.
    After our exchange the other day I decided to give the potato hack another try (day 2 today) and again having problems which I realize are hypoglycemia. Just to clarify, I am 115 pounds so I am not doing this for weight loss but rather for fixing my gut, my skin problem and the recent flair of knee pain.
    About 2 hours after my potato breakfast I feel lightheaded – both yesterday and today. I don’t feel hungry. I am paying specific attention to where this is coming from and it is not my stomach. I don’t feel like eating anything as a matter of fact but I have to in order to get rid of this lightheadedness. I’ve seen Wilbur mention Glucomannan for hypoglycemia several times. I wonder if I should add that while potato hacking or take that first and then do the PH? I also read about the role of saturated fats for hypoglycemia and I wonder if just adding some/a lot of butter or coconut oil to the potatoes in the morning would do the trick.
    What do you guys/girls think? Any feedback much appreciated.


    • Tim Steele February 3, 2017 at 10:39 am #

      I’d be more interested in your actual blood sugar numbers before making any suggestions. Do you have a tester? You can get an inexpensive one to see: http://amzn.to/2l4BZra


  31. Teddy February 3, 2017 at 11:54 am #

    Oh no! What do you suspect?

    No, I do not have a tester and never thought I needed one. I never have this problem when eating a balanced meal. If I go get a tester, when should I be testing?


    • Tim Steele February 3, 2017 at 12:36 pm #

      I don’t suspect anything, but since you brought up hypoglycemia, it might be worth $30 to see if that’s really what’s going on.


      • Wilbur February 3, 2017 at 12:50 pm #

        Part of the issue is what people sometimes call “hypoglycemia” might be unusual sensitivity to drops in blood sugar even though blood sugar is in the normal range. That was my problem. The only way to test this type is by continuous monitoring, a long test in which several sugars are given to induce the effect. Discontinuous monitoring wouldn’t distinguish this from normal fluctuations.

        Could the lightheadedness be a Herx effect?


        • Teddy February 3, 2017 at 3:07 pm #

          Tim, it will definitely be worth the $30 if there is any suspected problem. But if there was, wouldn’t it manifest itself in other situations too? Also, I had a bit if coconut oil with my lunch potatoes yesterday and today I had half an avocado with them and there was no more problem for the rest of the day. What I feel later is simple hunger. Not lightheadedness.

          Wilbur, how did you know that yours was sensitivity to drops in blood sugar rather than hypoglycemia? Did you do continuous monitoring? And also, how did you decide to take Glucomannan? Did you do it for the “hypoglycemia” or for the weight loss effect that everyone on the web raves about?


          • Tim Steele February 3, 2017 at 4:55 pm #

            Well, if you felt better adding some oil, then by all means keep it up! It sounds like you are on the right track, and if you get tired of potatoes add some sweet potatoes, plantains, beans, or lentils, too. All good gut food.


          • Wilbur February 3, 2017 at 5:41 pm #

            Teddy –

            I guess the technical name is Idiopathic Postprandial Syndrome (IPS).


            My entire life I knew it as hypoglycemia. It ran for generations in my family. I’ve discussed it with endocrinologists. They don’t even bother testing because the symptoms are dead-on. And the test is arduous.

            I just took glucomannan because it was a fiber that was not already in my mix. I was trying to get lots of different fibers. I just noticed that it went away entirely after starting glucomannan.


          • Jo tB February 5, 2017 at 3:10 am #

            As a T2 diabetic, I can tell you that in our world hypoglycemia is termed as a drop in blood sugar BELOW the base level which is set a 4 mmol/l. And you will know it. It is a form of “hunger” that is different from normal hunger at meal times. You can’t stop eating to try to get rid of that feeling. I have never had bouts of dizziness when having a hypo episode. Sweating, jittery legs are other symptoms. And if you eat pure sugar it generally goes away quite quickly. But it will spike your blood sugars again, sending them sky high again. So it is always advisable to eat some protein as well, and hopefully get your “saiety” homones going.

            If you generally have high blood sugar levels, then a big drop in sugar levels will give you the same signals of a hypo, when in fact your levels are still above normal. That is because your body has accepted a higher set point and will give you the same symptoms when it drops below that set point. I know I’ve had that happen to me.

            The only way to find out how your blood sugars are responding is by testing, which I have been doing for 15 years. I have recently found out that the condition of our gut flora has a huge influence on our blood sugars. If our gut bacteria (wrong set) can’t deal with carbs, then it will have its affect in our basal blood sugar levels.


            • Wilbur February 5, 2017 at 5:49 am #

              Jo –

              Yes, with diabetes “hypoglycemia” is truly hypoglycemia. IPS, though, has the same symptoms without blood sugars being below the base level. The cause is unknown. Some people still call IPS hypoglycemia because the symptoms are the same. Even endocrinologists do.

              You can test for hypoglycemia because your blood sugar will be below the base level when it happens. For my former IPS, blood sugar would show normal when I had symptoms. So testing for IPS seems to involve continuously monitoring to match onset of the symptoms to a drop in blood sugars. My understanding is that it is a five-hour test involving fasting and different types of sugars.

              Another difference is that IPS rarely (never?) results in death. As you know, true hypoglycemia can be very dangerous.

              With IPS, I get mental confusion which I guess could be thought of as lightheadedness. And, yes, it is a very different type of hunger!


              • Teddy February 5, 2017 at 7:50 am #

                Jo and Wilbur,

                From reading both your comments I think mine is something like what Wilbur describes and not what Jo describes. Definitely not very severe. I have experienced it when out and about and never felt I was in danger. Just wanted to eat something sooner than I had planned. And it only happens between breakfast and lunch and not between lunch and dinner.
                I am going to try Glucomannan to see what effect it would have. Wilbur, how would you recommend I start – 1/4 tsp with food or some other way/quantity?
                I will probably get a blood tester kit too.


                • Wilbur February 5, 2017 at 8:53 am #

                  Teddy –

                  1/4 tsp might be a good way to start. The thing with glucomannan is that it swells a LOT. Karl the Elixa guy was astounded by how much. I think Tim has turned water into a brick with it. I’ve had to throw away my kid’s smoothie when I accidentally put some in.

                  Thus, I’d personally mix a little of the powder with a lot of water. I use about 20 oz. for about 1/2 tsp, I think. I would never, ever use capsules because of fear that one breaks in my throat.

                  It doesn’t take a lot. Both Karl and I experience a very full feeling while taking it. I take it with my other fibersbout 30 minutes after breakfast.


                  • Teddy February 5, 2017 at 1:33 pm #


                    All sources I find recommend taking it 30 min before breakfast and you do the exact opposite. Can you share your reasoning?

                    Also, do you have to take it every day to avoid the ‘hypoglycemia’ feeling or just temporarily?


                    • Wilbur February 5, 2017 at 1:49 pm #

                      I have no reason. It’s just the way it works for me!


                    • Wilbur February 5, 2017 at 1:50 pm #

                      Oh, I’m a creature of consistency. I take it every day. I can’t tell you if it works otherwise.


  32. Erin J February 6, 2017 at 4:36 pm #

    Um, I did the potato hack for three days, but quit b/c I was passing such horrendous smelling gas, that even I couldn’t stand it! I’m guessing that I have leaky gut. Is there any way to prevent this? Or lessen it Will it go away?? Should I add some fermented veggies or take a probiotic or something?! I really want to do the hack for weight loss and gut issues, but I cannot if it gives me vile farts all the time. Help!


    • Tim Steele February 6, 2017 at 6:34 pm #

      This is not a common complaint, but I have heard this before. Mostly from low carbers who have stopped eating potatoes. I think that if you just start eating potatoes regularly for a couple weeks/months, then you should be able to try again without the same problems. If you normally eat potatoes without trouble, then I have no idea what’s happening.


    • Darla February 13, 2017 at 8:00 am #

      I hear many complain of this and i also had this problem. Eat a few slices of raw potato every day, to change your gut . I would clean out my colon first. If there is a dead animal up there ,it will come out. Gas and bloat can last a while, eat some greens along with potato for a couple of weeks, then , slowly drop the veggies down to just Taters, if that is your goal.


  33. Dorian Fuller February 8, 2017 at 8:16 am #

    I have been on potatoes for the last 5 of 7 days and I’ve lost ten pounds. My clothes are fitting great but I generally feel a little “off”. Tired, spaced out, hungry. That said, I have also been working out a lot…twice a day, 4 days a week. I’d like to modify the potato hack diet to include one reasonable meal a day. Would this still allow me to see fast results or does it somehow undermine the science of it all? Thanks and this site is really amazing!


    • Tim Steele February 8, 2017 at 9:32 am #

      One of the variations discussed in the variation chapter is to add a source of lean protein in a meal on its own. So, like 6-8oz of lean beef, chicken, or fish for a light lunch. Then a big potato dinner. Some say this works really well for those that are very active. Let us know!


  34. Teddy February 8, 2017 at 10:13 am #

    Hey Tim,

    I turned a friend of mine into a Potato-by-day hacker and she asked me if I knew anything about where to keep potatoes. I found this online: “Keeping a potato in the cold temperature of your refrigerator will turn its starch into sugar more quickly, so that you’ll be left with a sweet, gritty potato. Instead of putting potatoes in the fridge, store them in a paper bag in a cool — not cold — place.”

    I figured I’d ask the expert. If there is no basement or a cool place in the house and everything is ‘room temperature’, would you rather keep them in the fridge or out?


    • Tim Steele February 8, 2017 at 10:59 am #

      That’s a common question, lol. Do not put them in the fridge, it makes the potato think it’s winter and it will star converting starches to sugars and some other changes that it needs to go through to protect itself. Best to store in a cool, dry place, like a garage, basement, or cellar. But, if none of these are available, just keep at room temperature away from heaters and windows. The bag they come in usually provides all the protection they need.

      Potatoes keep fine for weeks like this, just like in the grocery store. But, only buy what you’ll use in a week or two, otherwise they will start sprouting and getting soft.


      • Sandra February 11, 2018 at 3:55 am #

        I just started this plan today and baked 5 pounds of potatoes in the crock pot. However, they had been stored in the fridge for a couple weeks. Should I toss these out because of them possibly converting to sugar?


        • Tim Steele February 11, 2018 at 6:10 am #

          I’d probably go and buy a bag of potatoes at the grocery or farmer’s market, the fridge is not the best place to store potatoes.

          “Low temperatures (45° F. or lower) enhance sugar formation. If the storage temperature is maintained below 45° F. for a long time, accumulated sugars in the tuber do not readily reconvert to starch (recondition). High-reducing sugar concentrations result in undesirably darkened potato chips and fries. Some varieties recondition better from low temperatures than others. Norchip, for exam ple, reconditions better from 45° F. storage temperatures than does Kennebec. In general, the optim um , long-term storage temperature for processing potatoes is approximately 45° F. For fresh m arket potatoes, a temperature of 40° F. is recommended. Seed potatoes may be stored at slightly lower temperatures (38° to 40° F.) for better weight loss and sprout control. ” [http://vric.ucdavis.edu/pdf/POTATOES/potato_storage.pdf]


          • Alexandra February 13, 2018 at 9:25 pm #

            Thank you so much for the quick response, and on a Sunday! I threw away those potatoes and started with fresh ones, not stored in the fridge. Today is Wednesday morning and I’ve lost 3 pounds already! I just bought a potato ricer and it really changed the flavor of the potato by making it like little pieces of rice. I boiled the red potatoes and then put them through the potato ricer, added some chives and salt and it was delicious).


    • Wilbur February 8, 2017 at 1:28 pm #

      It is also a good idea to keep potatoes and onions separate. Our house was built with a special “onion and potato” keeper. They’d go bad really fast. Apparently the each emit gasses that hurt each other. We now store pasta in that drawer.

      Now I keep them in separate ventilated canisters and they are just fine. The regular, non-organic potatoes are likely killed by a chemical that keeps them from sprouting. They last forever. The organic ones, like Tim says, sprout and eventually go soft. If they are firm, I just scrape the sprouts off.


  35. Ed Hasan April 29, 2017 at 1:05 pm #

    Hello Tim, Greetings from Pakistan! I am a 44 year old man. I binge when I am in stress and more food when I am depressed. At 5′ 7″, I weight 225 lbs. Pre-diabetic, blood pressure, you name it. I love potatoes. I will eat nothing but potatoes for two weeks and see how it goes. Just to motivate me, what kind of weight loss folks have seen in two weeks of doing all potato diet? and is it just potatoes and water on this diet? or adding anything else can help? Thanks in advance.


    • Tim Steele April 29, 2017 at 3:36 pm #

      It should work perfectly…you are exactly the type that responds best…middle-age male with metabolic syndrome. Try two weeks. Potatoes only, no butter or bits of foods…just potatoes. Water/Tea/Coffee can be drank. I bit of salt, pepper, or spice of preference. All kinds of ways to cook them…pick up a copy of the book to download or read to pass the time while losing weight.

      In 2 weeks? I would predict anything from 5 to 15 pounds. It will be a journey for sure! Let us know how you do.


      • Ed Hasan April 29, 2017 at 10:01 pm #

        Hello Tim,

        Thanks for your reply. I just bought the kindle version from Amazon. I will read it through and I am really excited. I will keep you guys posted.


  36. Robin H November 14, 2017 at 9:33 pm #

    I just started my 4th hack tonight. I was extremely hungry this afternoon, but all i wanted was an enormous plate of hash browns for dinner. I took that as a sign that my body was ready for another potato hack. I’m going to allow a little fruit and green veggies, because I did that last time with the same results. Yay potatoes! I’ve had great results with the PH, and it makes me gravitate toward eating lower fat in general. The one thing that worries me is that I’ve always read that fat is important for cholesterol and sex hormones. Any thoughts on this Tim?


    • Tim Steele November 15, 2017 at 8:24 am #

      Thanks for the feedback, Robin. Great job! Potatoes plus some fruit and veggies is a great longer term strategy, but I’m with you on the thought that we require some fats for various metabolic functions. This is one of the main reasons that I recommend potato hacking for 3-5 day stretches interspersed with periods of “normal” eating.


  37. Bree November 15, 2017 at 1:44 pm #

    I’m on day 3 of my first ever potato hack. The only variation I’ve allowed was a bit of vinegar on day 2. I’m back to plain today. I’ve had two potatoes and it’s 2:30. I feel slightly hungry but I’m going to wait it out a bit longer. I’m down 3.8 lbs as of this morning. But what I wanted to comment on is the HCG diet. I did the real HCG diet 3 or 4 times in my twenties (I’m currently in my thirties) I say “real” because I did the injections and I was serious with the food and prep. No shortcuts. I would lose about 20-25 lbs but I always gained it back no matter what I did, and quickly. It was very upsetting. But also… whoever said one isn’t hungry on the HCG is either a liar or superhuman. I was beyond miserable on that diet and I suffered the whole time. I couldn’t even watch TV because the commercials were all about food and I couldn’t handle it. I didn’t go out…. nothing. It was awful. This is a completely different story and I’m just hoping the weight I lose doesn’t come back the way it did on HCG.
    I normally stick to a somewhat primal/paleo/low carb diet and I avoid processed food and fast food (with the exception of the random protein style In N Out burger for good measure), so I consider my normal diet to be “healthy.” I need to lose about 40-50 lbs and I’m really hoping this will help. I hit a stall after losing 50-60 lbs on a paleo diet several years ago and my weight has fluctuated ever since. Ready to get off this merry go round and find what works for me once and for all.


    • Tim Steele November 15, 2017 at 2:18 pm #

      More than one hcg’er has told me the potato hack is easier and more effective than hcg. Good luck! The best way to lose 40-50 pounds with the potato hack is to faithfully do 3-5 days a week, eating mindfully in between potato days, for a couple months. Then use 3-5 day hacks intermittently to keep the weight off.


      • Bree November 15, 2017 at 5:09 pm #

        Hi Tim, thanks for the response! That’s exactly what I planned on doing. I figure I can do it weekly for 2-3 months, then every so often to keep my weight in check. Absolutely brilliant if it works.
        I bought your book almost immediately after stumbling across your blog, which I found because of a Chris Kresser interview on Joe Rogan’s podcast in which he mentioned this whole idea. I wish I had known about this sooner!


  38. Bree November 16, 2017 at 5:00 am #

    One more thing I wanted to mention but forgot, which I think is amazing and important for anyone considering this hack. I have always struggled with sugar and sugar cravings. I have been able to go long periods without it out of sheer will in the past but I struggled every day. But for whatever reason I’m on day 4 of the potato hack today and I haven’t had any sugar cravings. None. It’s amazing.


  39. earthbounder November 19, 2017 at 11:24 am #

    Hi Tim,
    Does the rate of cooling matter? If I put them outside in -10C for a few minutes does that matter, or is there a RS formation issue if its too cold?


    • Tim Steele November 19, 2017 at 1:24 pm #

      Rate does not matter, just get them cooled down to under 45 degrees for a few hours.


  40. Emily November 28, 2017 at 8:34 am #

    Hi Tim! I am on Day 2 of 3. So far so good. Feeling hungrier today so that means its working right? haha. I know ketchup is ok but what about hot sauce?


  41. Gina November 30, 2017 at 12:27 pm #

    Hi Tim – I have been diagnosed with insulin resistance. Would you still recommend using the potato hack for weight loss under this circumstance. I’ve read that potatoes are very high on the glycemic index. I don’t want to make things worse. Thanks!


    • Tim Steele November 30, 2017 at 12:47 pm #

      Gina – First you should get a blood glucose monitor (they are cheap: See on Amazon), and start checking your fasting blood glucose as well as seeing how you respond after meals. Depending of the severity of your insulin resistance, the potato hack might be just fine, and in fact, might reduce your fasting and after-meal numbers compared to your present diet.


      • Gina November 30, 2017 at 1:35 pm #

        Thanks for the quick response! My husband has blood sugar issues, so we have a monitor. I’ll guess I’ll have to get used to sticking myself! I’ll post again in a few days with any observations. My present diet is extremely limited as it is due to food intolerances, so I’m really hoping the potato hack will take care of that as well. Thanks for sharing all of this great information.


  42. Loulou January 29, 2018 at 2:08 pm #

    Hi Tim!

    Love your book! I’ve lost 30lbs in 30 days!!! I eat potatoes 3-5 days and whatever I want the rest of week.

    This is so easy and I am starting to feel better. I have MS and lots of pain/nerve pain.

    The last few days though, I have been lightheaded and dizzy. Any thoughts?


    • Tim Steele January 29, 2018 at 2:10 pm #

      Hard to say what causes lighthead and dizziness. Dehydration, lack of salt? 30 pounds in a month is a lot to lose! Congrats! Maybe take it easy for a couple weeks and let your body catch up.


      • Loulou January 29, 2018 at 7:27 pm #

        So, I made a mistake on those numbers and the amount of time…I have lost 30 lbs, but 10 of those pounds were back in December. I’ve lost 20 this month for a total of 30! Still a lot and more than I’ve ever lost so quickly before.

        I have a dr apt Thursday. I take medication for high blood pressure, wondering if maybe my blood pressure has dropped due to the weight loss, which would account for the lightheaded and dizziness.

        Thanks for your quick reply!


        • Tim Steele January 29, 2018 at 8:31 pm #

          Your doctor will be very happy! Will you dare tell him of your potato adventure? Good luck!


  43. Patricia Tye February 28, 2018 at 12:53 pm #

    Since you write, “Much of the fat loss that occurs on the potato hack happens in that magical time between dinner and your first meal of the day,” would it make more sense when on PBD to eat your non-potato meal at lunchtime and go back to potatoes for dinner?


    • Tim Steele February 28, 2018 at 1:57 pm #

      A potato dinner, skipping breakfast, and a “real” meal at lunch would be an ideal way to lose weight. Especially if you could avoid snacks and your lunch was comprised of super-healthy foods, ie. veggies, whole grains, lean meat, nuts, berries, etc… I find it easier to eat potatoes at lunch and a normal dinner, but just because dinner is usually a big event at my house.


      • Debbie April 18, 2018 at 5:53 am #

        This is close to what I do every day. About 3 potatoes, a bunch of kobucha squash, a small amount of salmon with Hi Maize, Gut Garden & Inulin all mushed into a mush. But – some constipation issues, and my fasting glucose number was up there. I skip breakfast and lunch is some kind of small healthy thing.


  44. Brenda March 7, 2018 at 6:54 am #

    Does anyone know – and I’m almost scared to ask- how to gain weight eating potatos ??


    • wildcucumber March 9, 2018 at 3:27 am #

      Hi Brenda – My 2 cents worth – that’s a good question, and one I wish I had the definitive answer to as well! I think the key might be that once the gut is in a good place, the body is more likely to reach for its optimal set point of weight, up or down as the case may be .. that’s my theory and hope, anyway. So fermented foods, cooked & cooled starches, home cooked well balanced meals/snacks, plus reasonable exercise and restorative sleep and a whole lot of patience. Weight gain is harder and takes longer than weight loss, as I know from my own experience and trying to fatten up a loved one or two.

      And there’s always poutine (fries, gravy, cheese curds). If dairy is tolerated and the fries and gravy are home made, that’s a powerhouse of calories 🙂


      • Brenda Potter March 12, 2018 at 1:09 pm #

        Thankyou for your reply it’s good to know I’m not the only one with this issue. It doesn’t help when people really don’t take you seriously and say things like ‘ I should be so lucky’ !! I think you may be correct about getting the gut to optimal levels first. I have just finished 6 days of Mark Seddon’s probiotics and am hoping I will,as a result, be up to eating a wider range of foods, and maybe some dairy it time.

        Many thanks


        • wildcucumber March 13, 2018 at 3:44 am #

          Brenda, are you familiar with the Ayurvedic system of the three doshas (body types)? They at least take into account that some people (the vata type) are just plain thin and tend to get thinner than they want to. I’m digging into that right now, there seems to be some potential there. Here’s a decent link if you’re interested.



  45. Kari April 3, 2018 at 5:12 am #

    Can you use any type of potato or does it have to be a certain one? I started with russet potatoes, but now I’m wondering if I should change to gold or red potatoes.


    • Sandy April 3, 2018 at 6:36 am #

      Whichever ones you like, but I don’t believe you should use sweet potatoes. I tend to like the red potatoes myself. I want to try blue potatoes, but I can’t find them in my local stores.


    • Kristin May 1, 2018 at 6:24 pm #

      Mix it up with different varieties. It’s interesting to compare a Yukon vs. a red when boiled or a baked Russet vs. bake red, etc.

      I found baby blue potatoes at Fresh Thyme.


  46. Lisa Common January 12, 2019 at 6:39 am #

    Hi can I have vinegar with the potato hack?


  47. Jason January 12, 2019 at 10:30 am #

    On day 8 of the potato hack. I am mixing in Ray Cronise’ contrast showers. But Tim, I have to say thanks. I have lost hundreds of pounds over the years with every diet known to man.I have also read every diet book I could find written in the last three centuries, I guess I didn’t find the 1849 potato book. As a result I thought I knew most everything about nutrition. Well as it turns out I didn’t know potatoes. At this point I am not sure if by buying your book I made a deal with the Devil but, right about now I am OK with it. I weighed myself post holiday last Saturday and weighed 278.5 I have been eating potatoes straight w salt. For the week although I did have a night out at a convention where we drank a ton of beer and then the next morning had a big gulp and sandwich yesterday. This morning (Saturday to Saturday) I weighed 258.2 lbs. 20 lbs in one week! While I have seen similar results straight fasting for a week but the soda and sand which would have thrown 5-7lbs (scale weight) back on.

    I have no idea idea why this works so well or how it works so well. In your book you just tell us that it does. Do you have any idea of the how and why? Is it reductive? Additive? Both? I plan on taking out to 2 months (with a multivitamin) or until the results diminish.

    I can’t explain how I lost 20lbs in 7 days, but I ain’t arguing!!!! Thanks.


  48. Bella March 25, 2019 at 12:44 am #

    Hi can you tell me if I should be leaving the skins on or off??



  1. Potato Hacking for Weight Loss or Maintenance | Weight Loss Mastermind - September 18, 2016

    […] Source: Potato Hacking for Weight Loss or Maintenance […]


  2. Potato Diets for Weight Loss or Maintenance – Mulya Ntoro News - February 3, 2017

    […] Source: https://potatohack.com/2016/03/13/potato-hacking-for-weight-loss-or-maintenance/ […]


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

<span>%d</span> bloggers like this: