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Cambridge Diet

Cambridge Diet Review (UPDATED 2024): Don't Buy Before You Read This!

A liquid diet that may be too calorie restrictive for long-term success.

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What is it?

The Cambridge Diet is a weight loss program offering pre-packed meals, counseling, and low calorie meal suggestions. It’s considered a VLCD, which means it’s a very low calorie diet.

One can select between 415 to 1500 calories depending on one’s weight loss goals, gender, and tolerance. Consultants are offered not just to guide, but to recommend what calorie limit one should follow. There have been numerous diets observed by our experts, and the highest rated one has been  the 18Shake Diet. It offers a diet pill and meal replacement shakes that aim to reduce appetite for hours, all while providing fat burning effects with its all natural ingredients. More information about the 18Shake Diet can be seen in the link here.

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Cambridge DietIngredients and Side Effects

Here are some noteworthy ingredients added to their prepackaged foods:

Skimmed Milk Powder


Guar Gum

Refined Fractionated Palm Oil

Acesulfame K




Dried Glucose Syrup

Silicon Dioxide



Guar Gum:Fiber extract taken from the guar plant. It’s used as a general thickener in processed foods, as well as a laxative.  It can promote side effects that include:

         • Diarrhea, gas, and loose stools.

         • Indigestion, nausea, and stomach pains.

Acesulfame K: Artificial sweetener around 200 times sweeter than standard sugar. A study by PLOS One found that:

“Long-Term Artificial Sweetener Acesulfame Potassium Alters Neurometabolic Functions”

This study showed that in mice there was an effect on insulin and leptin levels.  The same study added:

“chronic use… could affect cognitive functions, potentially via altering neuro-metabolic functions”

It also has shown the potential for other side effects according to a review by the Oxford Journals:

“long-dated function on the adult’s sweet preference”

This study was conducted on mice that were given their mother’s breast milk or amniotic fluid in birth, and their preference for sweets changed.

Sucralose: Artificialsweetener that can be around 1,000 times much sweeter than sugar. It has been used controversially since some studies have shown it to be potentially dangerous. One such study was performed by Duke University and it revealed:

“numerous adverse effects”

“reduction in beneficial fecal microflora, increased fecal pH, and enhancedexpression levels of P-gp”

This means the body considers it a toxin, and it reduces healthy bacteria which helps support the immune system according to this clinical study.

Carrageenan: Thickener and binder extractedfrom red seaweed.The University of Iowa ran a study which showed:

“carcinogenic properties of degraded carrageenan”

“ulcerations and neoplasms in association with exposure to carrageenan”

This has shown the possibility for causing serious issues in the body.

The link provided here has the top 10 ranked diets of the year.

The types of foods offered by the Cambridge Diet are meal replacement shakes, bars, pasta, rice, soups, desserts, and other snacks. According to the official website:

“products contain the vitamins and minerals you need for balanced nutrition and healthy weight loss”

Most of what one eats will be the prepackaged foods. This can make it easier to handle a caloric loss, as the foods are specially formulated to be lower in calories. There are also 6 steps outlined one must follow, though where one begins depends on what the counselor advises. Here are the steps:

• Sole Source: 3 to 4 prepackaged foods are eaten a day. The Sole Source Plus option allows for 3 prepacked goods alongside meal of 200 calories, or 4 of the companies meals with 200 ml of skimmed milk.

• 2nd Stage: Protein rich meals are added as well as some skimmed milk and vegetables alongside up o Cambridge meals. It’s typically limited to 810 calories a day for a week long period.

• 3rd Stage: 2 of the meals, some milk, and a 1,000 calorie a day limit. This is enforced for 2 weeks.

• 4th Stage: 2 prepackaged meals, some skimmed milk, and more regular meals.

• 5th Stage: One Cambridge meal and breakfast, lunch, snack, and dinner for a total of 1500 calories.

• 6th Stage: Once your heathy weight is reached, this stage helps maintain results. One prepackaged meal a day is recommended alongside continued support from a consultant.

It’s unclear whether or not the consultants have any background in diet and nutrition. It’s unlikely however that they use real certified dieticians, which can be potentially dangerous or lead to wrong advice. Our experts have analyzed many diets and have ranked the top 10 in the list here.

EDITOR’S TIP: Combine this diet with a proven meal replacement such as 18 Shake for better results.

Cambridge Diet Quality of Ingredients

Since the beginning of the program asks for a majority of foods to be selected from the company’s prepackaged foods, it’s important for the ingredients to be wholesome.

Unfortunately, they use artificial sweeteners and cheap thickeners often used to replace fiber. These kinds of additives can actually make weight loss harder, as studies have shown they may cause metabolism disorders as well as other side effects.

It’s also difficult to understand what kind of help is provided by the counselors, which remains to be seen whether or not they are actually certified to give health and nutrition advice.  The link provided here has a list of the highest rated diets.

A review on the Cambridge Diet was performed by the British Dietetic Association, and they have listed possible side effects which include:

“bad breathe, a dry mouth, tiredness, dizziness, insomnia, nausea, and constipation”

They also advise for medical support when a person is to receive less than 600 calories, which some plans offered by the company suggest only 450 calories a day. It’s unclear if the counselors offer any support for this type of reduction in calories.

The Price and Quality of Cambridge Diet

The price depends more on how often once decides to use the prepackaged meals. The official website states it will cost per week 48.30 pounds, which rounds to a weekly price of $63.46. Since this is a UK based plan, no consultations are available outside the US. In fact, on the official site there is a map where support and availability is offered, and there are no listings for the US.

The quality of meals is poor, as the additives included are often found in processed foods. It can also be expensive to have to keep using the company’s foods, as the final stage of maintenance requires one pre-packaged meal a day.

Business of Cambridge Diet

The contact information for the diet is as follows:

Phone Number: (44)(0) 1536 403344

Address:Stafford House, 10 Brakey Road

                   Corby, Northants, NN17 5LU

Email: [email protected]

The official website lists how to become a paid consultant for the company. Nowhere in the job skills is there any notice for people to have a background in health and nutrition. The company only asks for people with a background in sales who are organized and can plan ahead.

This means that it’s likely the people who are meant to give support have no skills in helping people with weight loss. The link cited here has the top 10 ranked diets.

EDITOR’S TIP: The top 10 list of the best diets is available here.

Customer Opinions of Cambridge Diet

Here are some direct quotes from user reviews:

“not the best diet health wise… nails went brittle thin, hair began to thin rapidly”

“never felt full, I always felt hungry”

“Having a bad time with motivation”

“the first few days are the hardest”

Though there were some weight loss results for people, there were also issues due to a lack of calories. Many felt weakened, less energetic, and much more fatigued than usual.

Some also had symptoms that are clear signs of nutrient deficiencies such as brittle and weak nails, thin hair, and increased stress. This was often the case for people who attempted this diet. 

The top 10 ranked diet plans can be seeninthe link provided here.

Conclusion - Does Cambridge DietWork?

The Cambridge Diet is similar to other diet plans which offer pre-packaged foods. There’s also counseling offered, but it’s clear that the support is from people who are more business people rather than nutrition experts. Many of the foods offered have processed ingredients, though they are low in calories. Reviews have been mixed with some experiencing health issues and hunger. Though a low calorie plan like this can work, any reduction in calories can result in weight loss. There’s nothing special added to the prepackaged foods which isn’t found in a standard processed meal.

Our experts have performed many reviews and have discovered that the most effective diet is the 18Shake Diet. It provides a combination of a meal replacement and a diet pill. They both provide only natural ingredients, no stimulants, and no unwanted artificial or additives. Its effects include appetite suppression, increased fat burning, and more. When used together it enhances weight loss at a faster rate. Customers have also left positive testimonials on the official website.

The 18Shake Diet is also supported by a full 30 day money back guarantee. This allows for people to try this product risk free, and with no questions asked. More information about the specifics of the 18Shake Diet is available here.

How Does Cambridge Diet Compare?
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  • Cambridge Diet
  • 35 /100
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User Feedback

(Page 9 of 59, 1175 total comments)


after reading comments i am inspired to try it thanks x

posted Nov 4th, 2009 12:46 pm


hi everyone! this place is great, haven't see so many people losing weight anywhere else. so far I believe in this diet:))) for me it's something. 'cause i'm always in war with my f... negative and sceptical mind.
'cause haven't started the CD just yet. my first meeting with my counsellor is on Monday. looking forward. in my ideal world I want to lose 5 stones. will see how it goes. my biggest problem after my negative mind is willpower, there are days when I just can't be bothered. gosh, I hate it so much, ha ha. but I'll try to be strong. OK, good luck to everyone. God (or devil, doesn't matter to me, he he) help us to be strong and motivated.

posted Oct 22nd, 2009 6:39 pm

Saima Haq

just started SS today. Wasn't too bad. Was wondering if i could do two shakes with high protein/ Atkins meal. Anyone try that. would love to know since this diet works on the same concept of ketosisi

posted Oct 19th, 2009 12:50 pm

Lawyer 2B slim again

I'm the new girl.('',). Hope everyone is having agood day. Is anyone still doing the CD?

posted Oct 13th, 2009 11:21 am



It works! I've lost 10 kg in 1.5 month and didn't put on . Just watch your portion.

posted Oct 7th, 2009 1:57 am


How much does this diet cost approximatley for a month? im thinking of starting this week, why does everyone ahve so mcuh trouble with the ianatenance, is it because weight loss is too fast?

posted Oct 2nd, 2009 7:43 am


I wonder can you have aspirine with this diet?

posted Sep 28th, 2009 1:40 pm



This diet is s**t......Yes you have fast weight loss, but they don't tell you about the side effects, like regaining weight fast even if you have done maintance....hair loss which I did suffer and now I have kidney problems, doctor has said it was probably due to high water intake and stressing my kidneys out :( this diet caters for people who are at there wits end and want that miracle..but nothing is better than healthy eating and exercise.


posted Sep 1st, 2009 10:58 am



hi everyone ive now been on the diet for 8 weeks and 6 days, i have lost a total of 3 stone and due to go and get weighed again tomorrow. i have tried so many other diets with little results but this diet beats them all and im loving it x

posted Aug 28th, 2009 5:44 am

Elin HOpkins

HI just started SS today- not enjoying it at the moment! BUT am very encouraged by all your stories! Going to try and stick to SS for a week, bit might have a chicken Salad on the weekend for a treat. I want to loose about 2 stone! I'll let u know how I go! x

posted Aug 26th, 2009 2:18 pm



im on day 4 of ss plus food and have just been to see my councellor to change my shakes and have already lost 3 1b which is fab. I WONT LIE THE FIRST FEW DAYS ARE TORTURE and having to take my daughter and her friend out for burger and fries was sooo bad but i have done it and feel really pleased with myself. keep going all of you.

posted Aug 7th, 2009 9:21 am


Hi I am currently 13.5 stone, I am starting the diet tomorow and want to drop 3.5 stone - how long do you think this will take?
Thanks x

posted Aug 2nd, 2009 2:36 pm


hi everyone, thought id let you all know how im doing. well i started the cambridge diet 14 weeks ago have lost 48lb so far (3st 6lb) only 8 lb left til i reach my goal and cant believe how quick and easy it has been. it does get easier after the 1st few days for def and before long its just your way of life and i find i dont think about it anymore. dont get me wrong ive had about 2 weeks off the diet in this time when ive been on holiday/birthday but somehow managed to stay the same when i weighed?!. the last few weeks, although mainly sticking to ss have had chicken salads in the night. i drink loads of coke zero, and water and diet coke now and again, and even had the odd treat after ive weighed on a thursday! i just hope when i reach my goal ill be able to maintain my weight- but its been the best thing ive ever done.

posted Jul 20th, 2009 2:27 pm


Hi all, just started on ss yesterday, and desperate to lose 3 stone asap, been fat for 7 years and now practically live as a hermit! My partner lost 5 st on ss 2 years ago but i just never had the willpower to stick with it for more than 1 day! Can someone tell me if its true that after the 3rd day it gets easier? And whats the truth about diet/zero coke? Also I have heard that there are other things you can do with the soups ie muffins etc, anyone have any recipes??
Good luck all xxxx

posted Jul 9th, 2009 9:09 am


I am starting on the 1000 calorie on Saturday for 1 week, then the 800 for 1 week then SS hopefully to lose at least 2 stone. My son, who has a lot more to lose will be doing it with me. I am a little anxious as I have no friends who are willing to support me on this diet (my first one ever by the way). They have all said that I will lose weight, but as soon as I come off the diet and start eating again, the weight will go straight back on and some. Also I am being repeatedly told that this is not a healthy diet. Obviously reading Nicolas comments is very worrying. Any advice or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

posted Jun 30th, 2009 4:47 pm


hey to everyone! came across this diet whilst browsing! hope you dont mind me contributing..
last year summer of 2008 I reached my goal weight and lost 4 stone, I was thrilled! I went on the maintenance and compleated it sucsessfully.
A year on.... I put on all my weight plus another stone, I have bowel abnormalities, stiffness of the joints and suffered with cysts.
I cant pin point a particular reason for this other than the CD.
Me now.....I go to the gym 3 days a week and horse ride 4 times, eat what i like but in quantity and even had some ice cream for tea tonight... and ive lost a stone in 6 weeks, I KNOW ITS NOT A QUICK AS THE CD, but I am gradually on the mend with the problems caused from lack of calorie intake, although the protein is sufficient in the CD I generally dont think I would be suffering now If I hadnt gone on the CD.
Good luck to everyone whos on it....please please all be very careful.

hope i havnt bored you all
take care love nicola xxx

posted Jun 19th, 2009 6:24 pm

Jackie Kerr

Hi everyone I started today - its 4.30 pm i made up the chilli soup for my lunch had to throw it away yuck! my friend said I should of made it thinner - I then made up a vanilla shake much better when can I use the gelatine for the shakes sounds great I have a stone to lose .....feel very tierd now its tough but reading the reviews its worth it x

posted Jun 18th, 2009 11:34 am



I've been on the CD- SS and have lost 1 stone in 9 days. Enough said!!

posted Jun 16th, 2009 6:12 am



I have lost 3 stone in 13 weeks on this diet so far-I could never have done this on any other diet. I've also lost just over 30 inches so far too.

I don't find that I'm hungry at all. Apart from the first few days before I went into ketosis. The cravings were hard to deal with at the beginning but now it doesn't really bother me. I'm almost halfway there now-I hope to be at my goal by September/October. I'm so glad I did this diet-it's changed my life.

posted Jun 16th, 2009 5:36 am


hi everybody, im starting this again today but i do the ss+ with the small meal, i lost 2st last time very quickly 10lb my first wk & 7lb second which was amazing & a great feeling, i have my holidays coming up so here i go again with 2 1/2 stone to lose im not sitting on the beach next to my teenage daughter & me looking a little chunky lol. good luck everyone everybody :)

posted Jun 8th, 2009 6:09 am


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BACKGROUNDBACKGROUND Start the Diet Now Advertisement

With new diets hitting the market faster than we can lose a pound, it is not too often that you stumble upon a diet that has been around for more than 20 years. The Cambridge Diet has proudly clocked some years under its svelte belt. Developed in the 80s, it still enjoys a very loyal and passionate audience of dieters who have been successful at losing weight and keeping it off.

It is a liquid diet program that involves drinking 3 servings of the signature Cambridge Diet formula each day with or without food. The three servings provide you with protein (either 30 or 50 grams), carbohydrates, fat, fiber and your daily-required vitamin and mineral allowances.

About ten years ago, the Cambridge Diet added an additional product to their 330 Original Product. The 420 Food for Life product contains 100% of the required daily protein needs in 3 servings whereas the 330 Product contains 75% of the required protein. The protein source comes from whey and soy. Both of them are nutritional supplements that do not contain drugs, medicine, stimulants or herbs.

There are four ways for you to follow the Cambridge Diet: - The Fast Track: Consume 3-4 servings of Cambridge a day and no additional food. - The Alternate Program: Use 3-4 servings of Cambridge for one day with no food and then the following day, consume 3 servings of Cambridge with the addition of 400-800 calories of low fat, low calorie health food. Continue to alternate in this manner. - The Regular Program: Eat 3 servings of Cambridge 15- 20 minutes prior to each low calorie meal. Calories should not exceed 400-800 for the entire day. - The Regular Program 2: Consume 3 servings of Cambridge and eat one meal of low calorie food each day. Calories should not exceed 400- 800 calories for the entire day.

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  • Cambridge Diet contains all the essential nutrients
  • Has a proven success rate
  • Safe for diabetics and those with high blood pressure
  • Its limited consumption of food may incite excessive eating
  • May be too calorically-restrictive for some individuals
  • Does not teach you to eat in a healthy and long-term way
  • Long-term weight loss may not be sustained
  • Calories might be too restrictive for exercise

The foundation of the Cambridge Diet is its signature line of shakes. They come in an array of flavors like chocolate, vanilla, eggnog, strawberry, cappuccino, banana cream and many more. The shakes come in two styles: The Original and the Food for Life.

The Food for Life product contains 51 grams of protein, 54 grams of carbohydrates, 3 grams of fat and 140 calories per shake. It also includes 100% of the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) of vitamins and minerals. The Original contains 31 grams of protein and contains about 110 calories per shake.

There is also a line of additional Cambridge products like soups, nutrition bars, and super oats.

When taken the prescribed three times a day, you'll only consume 420 calories. If you select to follow a plan that allows for food, you should not consume anymore than an additional 800 calories a day and these calories should come from low-calorie and low-fat foods like vegetables and lean proteins. If you are on the smaller side, it is recommended that you only consume an additional 400 calories on top of the 420 calories for the Cambridge products.

You are also strongly encouraged to drink at least 3-4 liters of water each day.


Since the Cambridge Diet is so restrictive, exercise should be done cautiously. It is not recommended to start a new strenuous exercise program while on the Cambridge Diet. Moderate exercise like walking or biking is useful once you start to lose weight, providing that it is approached with caution and not done with excess.


There is no question that The Cambridge Diet has been around for a long time. And in the process, many have had luck losing weight by following its strict dietary regimen. Since the diet is so low in calories, check with your doctor before starting it, especially if you have an existing medical condition.

The Cambridge Diet devotees swear by the diet's ability to help them lose weight as long as the program is followed correctly. But like most diets that rely on shakes or supplements to shed pounds, its potential for long-term weight loss and for instilling sound and healthy eating habits in you is not that promising.

Common MisspellingsCommon Misspellings

cambrdge Diet, cambradge diet, cambridge deit, camebridge diet, cambridge liquid diet, cambridgediet.com

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