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The Calendar Diet

The Calendar Diet

Dr. Melina Jampolis' no-nonsense year-long guide to weight loss.

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Dr. Melina Jampolis, M.D. and Karen Ansel M.S., R.D., with Ami Jampolis M.S. have found a way for you to lose weight while being able to enjoy the holidays and special occasions in your life. It is called The Calendar Diet and combines cutting edge research with real-life practical advice. These two powerful tools will help you succeed through your year-round diet challenges. It accomplishes this by using a three-pronged approach. The first part is step by step diet advice, The second involves recipes based on seasonal ingredients and produce, and last it covers a season-by-season exercise plan. As well as using the three-pronged approach it also provides additional sections to help you be more successful with your weight loss. It includes an extensive doctor-designed weight loss plan, 52 seasonal recipes (enough for every week of the year!) that cover every season, realistic diet suggestions for every holiday and seasonal diet trap of the year, behavioral tips, strategies and exercises to keep you on track all year long. It also includes a total body conditioning workout customizable to fit your lifestyle.

Click here to learn more about The Calendar Diet.

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  • Provides advice for entire year
  • Not a diet, but teaching a healthy lifestyle
  • Authors have proper credentials and experience
  • Breaks it down into simple, quick reference sections
  • Recipes are seasonal to keep down cost of food
  • Advice is simple
  • Tips are practical and easy to remember
  • Includes simple homework to keep you on track
  • Has a fitness section and includes pictures of exercises.
  • Doesn't cater to specific dietary needs but does include lower carb and vegetarian options
  • Recipes do not include prep time or pictures
  • Fitness section does not include stretches
  • Calorie guideline does not explain if it is including calories burned from exercise

The Calendar Diet includes 52 recipes that cover all the seasons and lists the food available in each, making the ingredients more affordable. It doesn't focus on a particular diet an there are no specific food restrictions but does help you prepare for holidays or occasion which are common pitfalls to your health goals. It also provides a simple guideline for how many calories you should have at each meal or snack but does not explain if this changes based on how many calories burned from exercise. She recommends eating three meals plus one to two snacks per day. Keeping breakfast around 300 calories, lunch and dinner around 400 with snacks and dessert being between 100 to 200 calories. To help you stay within the calories she provides serving size tips for each major food group. It also provides dining out, frozen meals and diet booster tips as well as a section that provides ways to supplement your diet. However, it does not provide a guide to your daily nutritional requirements (i.e. how many grams of protein do you need per day if including strength training).

A typical summer day would look like:

  • B: Apricot Orange Waffles

  • S: 2 celery sticks+1 tbsp. peanut butter

  • L: Seared Steak and Blue Cheese Salad

  • S: 1 cup non-fat Greek yogurt topped with 1/2 cup fresh berries

  • D: BBQ chicken Pizza with Pineapple

  • Dessert: 1 no sugar added frozen fruit bar

She does also include lower carb and vegetarian samples


This book, unlike most books, includes a fitness section. It uses circuit, cardio, high intensity interval training (HIIT) and pyramid training.

Circuit training is set up so you can mix and match the routines to fit your needs. It has explanations of the fitness levels so you know which one is right for you. It provides over 25 pictures and descriptions of all the different exercises. It also has a warm up section but nothing for stretches. An example of what a circuit workout would look like if you were at a Level 1 (If you're new to working out/haven't exercised in over 6 months):

The Circuit includes: 6 strength exercises + 3 cardiovascular exercises with one circuit equaling to 12-15 minutes and recommends for more of a challenge repeat three times.

So for example you could do:

  • Squats, donkey kicks, chest fly, triceps dips, bicycles and super man for your strength exercises.

  • For your cardio you could do: jumping jacks, squat thrusts and mountain climbers.

All of the HIIT circuits can be modified for different equipment and as you progress you can adjust the duration of the circuit. It includes four HIIT interval training recommendations but you can also make up your own.

The pyramid training is a great alternative for those who do not feel quite ready for the cardio HIIT training. The total amount of time spent doing this training can vary from 15-45 minutes depending on the time you spend at each level.

It recommends working out 6 days a week, with one of those days being an active rest day. It also suggests creating a new fitness routine each season.


The Calendar Diet is full of helpful tips to get you through the entire year, regardless of the holiday or occasion. The advice and information is laid out in a way that is fast and easy to read, and more importantly you will be able to use. It follows the concept that the easier it is, the more likely you will be successful and it does just that.

Her first book, The No-Time-to-Lose-Diet, was released in January 2007 and the paperback version, The Busy Person’s Guide to Permanent Weight loss was released in May 2008.

Dr. Melina is often sought out to be a public speaker and present lectures throughout the country on nutrition for weight loss and optimal health. She has been interviewed by USA Today, USA Weekend, New York Post, Family Circle, Better Homes & Gardens, Glamour.com, Ladies Home Journal, First for Women, Women’s World, Alternative Medicine Magazine, Women’s Health, San Francisco Magazine, Clean Eating, Baby Talk.


Calendar's Diet, Dr. Melina Diet, Calandar Diet, Calendar Diet Book

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