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The Hacker Diet

The Hacker Diet

A computerized approach to food journals.

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Created by an overweight tech guru, the Hacker Diet by John Walker uses computer programs like Excel to monitor calorie intake and calorie expenditure. The program, which is outlined in an ebook is a fairly straightforward approach to losing weight: Burn more calories than you consume and lose weight.

Using Microsoft Excel to monitor food intake and track energy consumption and expenditure, The Hacker's Diet allows you to see just how many calories you need to lose, maintain or gain weight.

Viewing the body as a simple control system, The Hacker's Diet prevents you from getting discouraged over small weight fluctuations through its unique engineering principles. Day-to-day water retention and hormone changes are corrected for allowing you to keep your eyes set on the long-term goal and your overall progress. The Hacker's Diet also alerts you to any relapse potential once your goal weight has been met.

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  • Teaches the importance of calorie intake versus calorie expenditure
  • Personalized to your own body, metabolic rate and food intake
  • Very number-friendly
  • Food-journaling is a successful way to lose weight and keep weight off
  • Specialized engineering principles keep you alert to your weight loss goal
  • Does not outline a clear diet plan
  • Requires dieter constantly input their health data
  • Computerized program may not appeal to some dieters
  • Requires a computer and Microsoft Excel

The Hacker's Diet is a computerized program that allows you to track your own weight loss progress. Although it does not promote a specific diet plan, it does require that you log what you eat and how much you ate so that you can see how many calories you are consuming every day.

As you also keep track of your weight, you can determine whether you need alter how much you eat in order to keep with your weight loss goals.


Exercise is logged on the Hacker's Diet Excel spreadsheet in order to determine how your calorie expenditures balance with your calorie consumption.

Exercise is strongly encouraged as a way to not just support weight loss, but to feel better. Walker proposes a fitness program similar to the Royal Canadian Air Force, a kind of intense form of fitness that combines cardiovascular exercise with strength and resistance training.


The Hacker's Diet is a calorie-counting computerized program that features some very unique characteristics that single it out among other electronic diets. Built on a simple model that views the body as control system where food consumed is compared to calories burned and with special features that correct for day-to-day minor fluctuations in weight and alerts to let you know when you are at risk of gaining back lost weight, the Hacker's Diet is an impressive and accurate weight loss and maintenance tool for those who love numbers and don't mind keeping daily accounts of their food and exercise behaviors.

Common MisspellingsCommon Misspellings

hacker diet, hakcer diet, haker diet, hakker diet, hacker deit

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(Page 1 of 1, 8 total comments)


This is a serious tool in the fight to lose weight. It's black and white site, no adverts and that its completely free may lead people to think it's worthless but it's real gold!
It clearly demonstrates that weighing yourself on its own can be hugely misleading and the site will keep you updated on how many calories you are under or over consuming on a daily basis without having to input what you eat or counting calories !Whilst this may appear too good to be true or even black magic it's simply very elegant but complex maths. This is a no gimmick, highly intelligent site.

posted Oct 20th, 2015 7:24 am



I started my weight loss program four weeks ago by following the "Hacker's Diet". So far I have lost over 3 pounds (1.5kg) and I am confident that I will stay on course to reach a healthy weight and *maintain* it.
In my opinion this program is terrific because it teaches me how to manage my weight even after I loose excess fat.

posted Aug 9th, 2010 12:21 pm


I think it ought to be noted that the review isn't quite right in saying that a computer and spreadsheet program are *required* for this weight control program to work.

The book very clearly outlines how it can be done with pencil and paper. Granted, a spreadsheet will make it simpler, but it's absolutely possible to do the necessary tracking on paper.

posted Apr 8th, 2010 9:24 pm



I have been dieting for over a month after reading this book and I've consistently lost 1 pound a week using this book's ideas and calorie-count.com to track my weight and calories. The most important idea in the book is it's insight in completing the feedback loop between weight tracking and calorie counting.

posted Feb 8th, 2010 12:18 am



Sorry, forgot to add a review choice on my last post

posted Dec 23rd, 2009 1:22 pm


I discovered this book about 2 months ago, and have been following it since. The no-nonsense approach to losing weight is refreshing�?�no gimmicks, no fads, just very simple logic. There are many different levels that you can utilize this approach.

The main tool from this book is what he calls the 'eat watch', which is a formula based on your daily weight. Basically the formula computes a trend-line that shows you your average weight. From this you can derive if you are eating too much, too little, or are in that goldilocks zone (just right). By using this as a guide you adjust your caloric intake accordingly. Now, for those who are concerned about not being able to have access to a computer, one of the things that you can do is just mark down your weight and then enter it on your own. For the purist, you can just calculate your trend on a piece of paper. What's even better is that there is a website now associated with the book where you can log in and enter your weight for the day. It builds the charts and computes your trends from that. What's even better is that you can see others progress anonymously through the site as well, which is always a boost.

As for keeping track of calories throughout the day, well the book actually recommends planning out meals more than anything. Personally, tracking all of the calories I'm ingesting is a bit much, so really i try to plan ahead, or at least do a rough tally in my head throughout the day (which i have to do a lot given that I'm traveling frequently). In 1.5 months I've lost about 10 lbs overall. While that is not from this book alone (planning meals and such require cookbooks:), I feel that seeing weight loss from this logical perspective, and actually being able to visualize your loss through the graphs and trends is pretty motivating. I highly recommend it to everyone.

posted Dec 23rd, 2009 1:20 pm



This is not a diet. It is a weight control system. If you follow it, it works.

posted Oct 17th, 2009 10:52 am

Luc Reid

Even though I'm on computers most of the day, it sounds like for me this approach would break down when I'm traveling or out doing things in the evening or on weekends, which are actually the times I probably need to pay the most attention to what I'm doing--so I keep track of what I eat, what exercise I get, etc. on a pad of paper.

On the other hand, this kind of system really sounds powerful in terms of giving a very clear view of exactly how you're doing; the feedback process (an important part of maintaining motivation for most people) is almost built-in.

If anyone has tried this, I'd be curious how it worked for you in terms of motivation. I write a site called The Willpower Engine and am always interested in hearing about people's personal experiences with willpower and motivation.

posted Aug 6th, 2009 3:15 pm


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