Best Weight-Loss Diets

The best diet for losing weight is Weight Watchers, according to the experts who rated the diets below for U.S. News. Biggest Loser, Jenny Craig and the raw food diet came in close behind. Other diets performed as well or better in enabling fast weight loss, but long-term weight loss is more important for your health.



(3.1 out of 5.0)

DASH Diet recipes | DASH Diet reviews

With an emphasis on healthful, filling foods that don’t pack lots of calories, the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) drew reasonably good ratings from experts although it wasn’t designed as a weight-loss diet. They judged it to be about as good for short-term weight loss as for long-term weight loss.

How the DASH Diet works


Eco-Atkins Diet

(3.1 out of 5.0)

Eco-Atkins Diet recipes | Eco-Atkins Diet reviews

Experts regarded Eco-Atkins as much more effective for short-term than for long-term weight loss. It “may be difficult to consistently adhere to,” one expert said, because it is largely a “do-it-yourself diet.”

How the Eco-Atkins Diet works


Engine 2 Diet

(3.1 out of 5.0)

Engine 2 Diet recipes | Engine 2 Diet reviews

The Engine 2 diet pulled in a slightly above-average 3.1 stars. It’s not designed as a weight-loss plan, but followers may shed pounds by filling up on nutrient-rich plant foods and cutting out animal fats, added sugars, and oils. Still, “I would not recommend it as a way to lose weight,” one expert said.

How the Engine 2 Diet works


Mayo Clinic Diet

(3.1 out of 5.0)

Mayo Clinic Diet recipes | Mayo Clinic Diet reviews

While evidence is lacking that the diet works, the experts’ ratings reflect their view that if followed, the Mayo diet can deliver at least modest weight loss, both short- and long-term.

How the Mayo Clinic Diet works


Mediterranean Diet

(3.0 out of 5.0)

Mediterranean Diet recipes | Mediterranean Diet reviews

As a weight-loss plan, the Mediterranean diet didn’t overwhelm the experts, but it’s not built to be one. It is up to the individual to keep watch over the scale.

How the Mediterranean Diet works


Ornish Diet

(3.0 out of 5.0)

Ornish Diet recipes | Ornish Diet reviews

Experts deemed the Ornish plan to be OK, but not great, for people searching specifically for a weight-loss diet. Its greatest strengths lie elsewhere, especially in heart health.

How the Ornish Diet works


South Beach Diet

(3.0 out of 5.0)

South Beach Diet recipes | South Beach Diet reviews

South Beach helps dieters drop pounds—fast. But our experts felt it’s less likely that they’ll actually keep the weight off long-term. We found little research indicating that the diet is sustainable or that it helps dieters maintain weight loss over the long haul.

How the South Beach Diet works


TLC Diet

(3.0 out of 5.0)

TLC Diet recipes | TLC Diet reviews

The Therapeutic Lifestyle Changes (TLC) diet isn’t designed for weight loss. But if sensibly followed, it can produce it, experts said, because it’s a fundamentally sound approach to eating. One plus: no extreme measures such as shunning carbs or meat.

How the TLC Diet works


Vegetarian Diet

(2.9 out of 5.0)

Vegetarian Diet recipes | Vegetarian Diet reviews

For weight loss, in the experts’ opinion, the vegetarian diet is slower off the mark than most alternatives at quick weight loss. Given time, however, it gains back ground, beating out about half the field on long-term weight loss. Although vegetarianism isn’t designed to be a weight-loss plan, building in a calorie restriction and filling the menu with healthful foods could help dieters shed some pounds.

How the Vegetarian Diet works


Macrobiotic Diet

(2.8 out of 5.0)

Macrobiotic Diet recipes | Macrobiotic Diet reviews

Experts weren’t impressed with the macrobiotic diet’s ability to deliver weight loss. Its below-average rating landed it in the bottom third of the list. Experts pointed to a lack of robust clinical studies examining its weight-loss potential. They liked its ban on processed food and emphasis on healthful choices like whole grains, veggies, and bean products, however.

How the Macrobiotic Diet works

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Best Diets Rankings

Best Diets Overall
Diets ranked by across-the-board effectiveness.

Best Diabetes Diets
Diets that can prevent diabetes or help diabetics.

Best Heart-Healthy Diets
Diets that lower cholesterol, blood pressure or triglycerides.

Best Diets for Healthy Eating
Diets ranked by how safe and nutritionally complete they are.

Best Commercial Diet Plans
Brand-name diets ranked by overall effectiveness.

Easiest Diets to Follow
Diets ranked on whether they're a snap to stick to.

Best Plant-Based Diets
Plant-based diets ranked by overall effectiveness.

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