Bright Line Eating is a diet book written for people who suffer from overeating and who feel out of control around food. Like other addictions, the reward of food is so strong that it’s difficult to say no to a favorite food or a binge.
The Bright Line Eating program acknowledges not everyone who consumes sugar and flour is addicted, but those who are will find it easier to avoid overeating if they abstain completely from sugar and flour. Sugar and flour tend to trigger more binges than any other food, so avoiding them with a “Bright Line” is how the Bright Line Eating plan was born.
What is the Bright Line Eating Plan?
The full Bright Line Eating plan has 4 ‘bright lines’. These are non-negotiable. These are lines you do not cross, because when you do, you fall into the slippery slope of overeating and losing control. So, those non-negotiable bright lines are:
- No Flour
- No sugar
- No eating between meals
- Eat a specific amount of pre-selected food.
The first three bright lines make a lot of sense to me, especially when I feel out of control. Avoiding flour and sugar can help me feel better more in control of my food almost immediately. If I just want to make sure to eat 3 meals and no snacks, I also feel great about my day. The best thing I ever did for my health and weight loss was to eat three meals and to stop snacking and grazing all day.
The fourth bright line though, eating a specific amount of food, was the hard part for me, and likely the reason I won’t keep up with the full program, despite how successful my weight loss was! (I lost 7 lbs in 7 days eating that specific amount of food after all!)
But limiting my meals to a serving of protein and lots of veggies had me bored and wishing for more food. I wasn’t actually hungry. I had tons of energy. But I ENJOY sitting down to a big plate that includes fruit and grains with multiple servings of each! It’s much more satisfying for me (mentally) than meat and salad every single day.
The Bright Line Eating 14 Day Challenge
Summer just ended here, and while I spent a good part of 2 years getting my weight to 115 and making that my new weight set point, this summer had me overeating from vacations, family visits, house guests and a lack of a schedule. I weighed in just two weeks ago at 122 lbs. And although I’ve read the Bright Line Eating book, I needed something a little more structured to really give me a kick in the pants. SO, I signed up for the Bright Line 14 Day challenge.
The challenge is a series of videos each day for 14 days to help you stay on track. I do like how it’s structured, and it helped me get the jump start I needed. The first few videos helped me get my environment cleaned up. The printable downloads however made the program worth it to me. I printed off the food lists and meal guidelines and carried them with me EVERYWHERE! You can also get these in the book, but I liked having a PDF of the plan, stripped to the essentials, A LOT!
During the 14 day challenge, I got daily emails with prompts to watch the next video in the series. I watched the first few videos, which were great, but I kind of got bored and busy, and didn’t really finish all the videos. I felt like I had enough information that I didn’t need them.
I also liked that the videos were hosted on YouTube, because I was able to watch them at 1.5 speed (it’s how I watch ALL YouTube videos! haha!)
Was the Bright Line Eating 14 Day challenge worth $29?
For me it was, even though I own the book in hardback AND Audible. I really liked getting the emails for daily reminders and the deadline of 14 days, to give it a real chance. Plus, did I mention, I loved the downloads!
You can certainly follow the program without dropping another $29 on the Bright Line Eating 14 day challenge, but if you’ve spent the kind of money on weight loss programs and products as I have, $29 is pretty reasonable for an extra kick in the butt for a structured, time constrained challenge.
Losing 7 lbs in 7 Days on Bright Line Eating
I wouldn’t have believed it if I didn’t see it myself, but it’s true! I lost a full 7 pounds on this program. (see my weight chart below) I started at 122.6 and 7 days later was at 115.4 lbs.
I kept my calories around 1200 by adding a few extra pieces of fruit to the day. Following the plan exactly made it hard to get 1200 calories, and I am interested in pitting this against other 1200 calorie attempts to lose weight, so keeping it on track was good.
What I liked:
- The macros were all over the place, which was awesome because it showed me that I don’t have to be so exact with macros.
- I like that it wasn’t a “low carb” diet. I ate plenty of fruit and the carbs were around 40%.
- I like that grains are included (I ate oats most mornings).
- I wasn’t hungry between meals. I was definitely satisfied.
- I had TONS of energy. I really think this is simply from NOT overeating! Overeating drains me mentally and physically. In fact, I hate it so much I have no clue why I continue to do it!
- I liked planning my meals the night before so I knew what to eat, and I could run to the store in the morning to be set up for the day!
What I didn’t like:
- I didn’t like that there wasn’t enough variety for me. Even though I tend to eat the same foods every day when I’m not on a plan, the absence of being “allowed” to eat anything I wanted kind of messes with my rebellious side.
- I got bored. It’s so sad. I realized that I use food to entertain myself a LOT! So, when that was taken away, I didn’t know what to do at home when I’d normally be peering into the pantry.
- I have food thoughts a lot, and didn’t realize how often I allowed myself to just give into a food thought without challenging it a single second. This is me: think about pretzels. Walk to pantry and eat a handful of pretzels IMMEDIATELY. I never make myself wait. I’m like a toddler demanding a snack and getting it. So, during this challenge when I had to tell myself no, it shocked me how often those thoughts of eating something came over me!
My Bright Line Eating Before and After
Altogether I lost 7 lbs. While a before and after photo wouldn’t look that different in the camera, I feel lighter and leaner!
Some people will argue it was all water weight- but guess what… WATER WEIGHT TAKES UP ROOM IN YOUR PANTS! I was down 1.5 inches in my waist and 0.5 inches in my hips.
Bright Line Eating Meal Plan & Recipes
I’m actually really proud of myself for keeping records this well for 8 days! I have photos, recipes, and the nutrition data for all the meals I ate for 8 days. This is great for me as soon as I want to lose a quick 7 lbs again!
Following the Bright Line Eating weight loss program the meals below included:
- Breakfast: 1 serving protein, 1 serving grain and 1 serving of fruit
- Lunch: 1 protein, 6 ounces veggies, 1 fruit and 1 fat
- Dinner: 1 protein, 6 ounce veggies 1 fat, and 8 ounce of salad
What I changed about the program:
- I didn’t last a full week of 8 ounces of salad every night! I was pretty saladed out.
- I drank diet coke. The program says no artificial sweetener, but I kept the diet coke in my diet.
- I added fruit to get up to 1200 calories.
- I exercised every day. The program doesn’t want you to exercise. One thing at a time. But, I have been active daily for decades so I didn’t stop.
DAY 1 BRIGHT LINE MEALS
- Breakfast: 2 eggs, 1 ounce oats, 6 ounces berries.
- Lunch: 4 ounces turkey, 6 ounces carrots, 1 tbl ranch dressing
- Dinner 4 ounces chicken, 6 ounces zucchini and 3 ounces salad with ranch dressing.
DAY 2 BRIGHT LINE MEALS
- Breakfast: 6 ounces peach, 1 egg + 1/2 ounce cheese, plus 1 ounce oats.
- Lunch: 6 ounces cucumber, Greek yogurt, 6 ounces blueberries and ranch.
- Dinner: 3 ounces steak, 6 ounces peppers cooked in 1 tablespoon oil, 3 ounces salad, and dressing
DAY 3 Bright Line Eating Meals
- Breakfast: 1 ounce oats, 6 ounces berries, 8 ounces greek yogurt.
- Lunch: 4 ounce rotisserie chicken, 6 ounces cucumbers, 2 ounces cherry tomatoes, 6 ounces grapes, 2 tbls dressing
- Dinner: 4 ounces steak, 6 ounces salad, 6 ounces broccoli and olive oil.
Day 4 Bright Line Eating Meals
- Breakfast: 1 egg, egg whites, apricots, and sweet potato.
- Lunch: 3 ounces steak, lettuce, poppyseed dressing, and pumpkin seeds.
- Dinner: Zucchini noodles, ground beef, lettuce, cherry tomatoes, spahetti sauce, and dressing.
Day 5 Bright Line Eating Meals (some on the go meals)
- Breakfast: 1 ounce shredded wheat, 6 ounces grapes, 2 eggs.
- Lunch: Roasted chickpeas, olive oil, apricots, and carrots.
- Dinner: Rotisserie chicken, salad, broccoli, and dressing.
Day 6 Bright Line Eating Meals
- Breakfast: oats, egg, cheese, cantaloupe.
- Lunch: chicken patty, mayo, apricots, banana, corn.
- Dinner: Zucchini, burger, mushrooms, lettuce, and ranch.
Day 7 Bright Line Eating Meals (with a restaurant meal!)
We went out to eat this night, and I still lost weight the next day! I got a Costa vida salad with Pork.
- Breakfast: Shredded wheat, strawberries, and yogurt.
- Lunch: Strawberries, rotisserie chicken and parmesan cheese, spaghetti squash, butter, and avocado!
- Dinner: Costa Vida Salad with pork
Day 8 Bright line Eating Meals
- Breakfast: egg, cheese, apple, and oats.
- Lunch: Plums, apricots, rotisserie chicken and parmesan cheese, spaghetti squash, butter, and avocado!
- Dinner: Chicken broccoli, riced cauliflower, olive oil and yoshida sauce.
That was my experience with the Bright Line Eating plan! I like it. It’s a great jump start. If you are truly addicted to food, it can help you become free from the food addiction.