What can I eat?

The Harcombe Diet is about eating real food and ditching fake food. You won’t be counting calories, or points, or carbs, or starving every other day, or 2 days a week. You won’t be eating less – full stop. You’ll be eating better. This short video will explain the power of not counting calories, but making the calories you eat count.

The diet is in 3 Phases:

Phase 1 is just 5 days long (although it is recommended to stay on Phase 1 for longer if you have more than 20lb to lose and/or if you have marked Candida overgrowth). You can have unlimited meat, fish, eggs, vegetables (except potatoes/mushrooms), Natural Live (bio) Yoghurt, herbs, spices and one portion of ‘safe’ grains daily (brown rice, quinoa, oats).

Phase 2 is followed for as long as you need to lose weight. Fruit, dairy products, baked potatoes and whole grains are re-introduced, as works for you (the books hold your hand through all this).

Phase 3 is the lifelong weight maintenance plan. It’s how to eat ‘off-piste’ and keep the weight off. You’ll learn the rules of ‘cheating’ and see what you can get away with without re-gain.

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Website Comments

  1. avatar Maria Loizou
    Reply

    Ιt is necessary to eat rice or oats every day; is required by the rules;

    • avatar Andy
      Reply

      No need to eat them if you don’t want to. They just give you options if you want them.

      • avatar Tracy Walcroft
        Reply

        Hi Andy, could you possibly send me the can and can’t eats please I’m really wanting to start ASAP and not sure what to eat on phase 1 thank you x

        • avatar Andy
          Reply

          Hi Tracy. Drop me an email with your address and I’ll pop some in the post for you. Andy

          • avatar Andy

            Sure. Just drop me an email with your address and I’ll pop some cards in the post for you.

  2. avatar karen a barber
    Reply

    Try your best and cut the carbs out or at least down. Your first day you had oats then whole grain rice.
    I have chickens so on my first week here day # 3, I scramble 6 eggs with butter per breakfast. I am busy as well but by noon I am ready for my salad with turkey loaded with veggies using olive oil, hardboiled eggs & tomatoes stick blender as my dressing with seasonings. Today finally wanting a bit different meal for dinner. Eggplant, peppers, onions, purple cabbage, garlic sauteed in oil, add 3 cup chopped tomatoes & juice, add a cup of water season it really heavy. Simmer & stir until soft then sprinkled raw rolled oats stirred in enough for 4 portions stir put lid on simmer very low like porridge let it swell with the lid on. The oats thicken up the juices and make the best tasting satisfying meal. Better yet, next days after refrigerated. But I won’t eat again till after 5th-day is up! I am a carbaholic so if I can do it you can too. So uncomfortable to bend over and tie shoes UGH! I have 30 # to lose so I will be doing Phase 1 till it comes off and I am serious about losing them! First 2-3 days hardest. Today did not even get hungry after Eggs @ 7:30 am late lunch large veggie salad & turkey @ 2 pm. BEST WISHES!!!

  3. avatar Candice Mitchell
    Reply

    Hi. Is white wine vinegar or cider vinegar ok to use in phase 1 please? Started today

  4. avatar Jane
    Reply

    I’m about to start Phase 1 and wondered if fat has to be removed from meat before cooking, or can I leave on and eat? Many thanks.

  5. avatar Kirsty Fogg
    Reply

    Hi there, I want to start Phase 1 asap but struggling to find a solid list of can and can’t haves? Is there anything on this site for a definitive list or are there cards or something that could be sent at all please? My mum and I want to lose weight for my wedding in a few months so want a good health boost.

    Thanks in advance, kirsty.

    • avatar Andy
      Reply

      If drop me an email with your address, I’ll pop some cards in the post for you.

      • avatar Storm
        Reply

        Hello andy,
        Would it be possible for you to send me the cards too? About to start phase 1 and am vegetarian and a bit confused. Is bread allowed? Soya milk?
        Thanks
        Storm

        • avatar Andy
          Reply

          Sure. Just drop me an email with your address and I’ll pop some in the post for you.

          • avatar Kiara

            Hi Andy, any chance you still have some cards to send out? I’m happy to pay p&p

          • avatar Andy

            Just drop me an email to clubadmin with your address and I’ll pop some in the post for you

  6. avatar Anna
    Reply

    If you can have creamed coconut in a phase 1 curry can you eat raw coconut (dried but with no additives or sugar etc- just coconut) on phase 1?

    • avatar Andy
      Reply

      No ‘raw’ coconut in Ph1 . The creamed amount is so small in the recipe you needn’t worry about it, or you can leave it out if you’re overly concerned

  7. avatar Gillian
    Reply

    JuSt wondered about long term effects of vlcd and ketosis. Ie do these have the same long term imact on maintain weight loss as counting calories has?

    • avatar Andy
      Reply

      You’d need to ask at the people recommending these diets for long-term weight-loss. An interesting starting point maybe this

  8. avatar Sarah Bee
    Reply

    Hello Andy 🙂 I was wondering if this diet suits those who have a vitamin D deficiency and are not allowed to consume dairies ?
    Thank you

    • avatar Andy
      Reply

      No reason why not. Sardines, salmon, other oily fish, eggs, liver and other foods are rich sources of Vit D

  9. avatar Will
    Reply

    Hi Andy, I’m about to start phase 2. What cheese am I allowed to have as part of a ‘fat’ meal?

    • avatar Andy
      Reply

      Any cheese that you like. Introduce them one-at-a-time to check that a particular type doesn’t cause yuo any problems

  10. avatar Hermione Ireland
    Reply

    Hi,

    I love the diet – worked well for me in the autumn but I didn’t get as far as Phase 3 so starting again with my husband this time. He’s asked if miso soup is ok for phase 1?

    thanks

  11. avatar Sian
    Reply

    Hi. Just about to start the Harcombe plan, but slightly confused with the meat part. As I understand i have read to avoid processed foods-so how can bacon and ham be allowed as these are processed meats? Thanks.

    • avatar Andy
      Reply

      Ask your butcher for dry cured ham/bacon with no sugar in the curing. There’ll then be typically only salt, which is fine.

  12. avatar Mike D
    Reply

    Andy,
    Is there anything that we can eat that helps/is good for Postate problems/prevention? Any evidence based support for this?
    Thanks

  13. avatar Nicky
    Reply

    I am on phase one at the moment but have found a pea pasta in the dressing from section in the supermarket, can I have this?

  14. avatar Rachel
    Reply

    Hello, I am three days into phase one but have been having avocados. After reading the comments I now realise this is wrong. I am looking to starve candida so would greatly appreciate the food cards that previous posters have referenced. Would it be at all possible to send me some? Cheers

    • avatar Andy
      Reply

      Not if it contains sugars or sweeteners or lots of fruit juice. A squeeze of lemon would be fine

  15. avatar Ersie
    Reply

    Hi I’m a bit confused about the “don’t mix fat with carbs” rule. Does that mean that in Ph 2 for example I can’t have brown pasta with a bit of butter or oil?

    • avatar Andy
      Reply

      A small amount of butter/oil for cooking is fine. The rule is not to mix, say, Lamb with pasta in the same meal.

      • avatar Gina
        Reply

        Hi i’m also cofusef with the “don’t mix fat with carbs” rule. at fase 2 can i eat meat with salad or veggies? meat is fat and salad carbs…. or salad with chease or egg?

        • avatar Andy
          Reply

          meat, fish, cheese, eggs (all fats) can be eaten with green veg and salad but not with rice, pasta, potato etc.

  16. avatar Jo
    Reply

    Hi
    On phase 1 can you suggest anything to put into the live yoghurt to make it taste any better. Hate the taste in its own, thankyou

  17. avatar Les Smith
    Reply

    I don’t understand why I can have jacket potatoes but not boiled new potatoes in their skins?

  18. avatar Emma
    Reply

    Hi Andy, is it ok to have oatly with my porridge? It’s ingredients list is oat base (water, oats 10%), sea salt.

  19. avatar Zhac
    Reply

    Is possible to have brown black rice (50g) during phase I ? I read brown rice but iwas used to tha black kind, is it the same?

  20. avatar Karin Wightman
    Reply

    Hi. Can I have home produced honey in phase 1? For things like porridge or yogurt? Also, can I add seeds & nuts?
    Thanks

  21. avatar Sarah
    Reply

    Hi, I’m just starting phase 2, what cream am I allowed to eat please ? Also please can I have some of the cards, thankyou

    • avatar Andy
      Reply

      Full fat dairy cream is delicious and fine (as long as you’re not dairy intolerant).
      If you drop me an email to clubadmin at theharcombedietclub dotcom with your address, I’ll pop cards some in the post for you.

  22. avatar Omid
    Reply

    Hello,

    In what phase can I have pickled veggies? (Pickles) also, can I have olives in all phases?

    TIA

  23. avatar Kaz
    Reply

    Hi im a vegetarian and will this still work well for me but the only fish i like is roe and tuna

    • avatar Andy
      Reply

      Hi Kaz, many vegetarians have followed the diet with great success. Having fish increases your meal options too.

  24. avatar Amanda
    Reply

    Hi, I started phase 1 yesterday – so far so good!! Should I be cooking using oil or dry frying? Also should the live bio yoghurt be low fat or full fat and can I eat this at any time in the day? Don’t want to ruin my weight losses by using oil and full fat yoghurt if it should be the opposite. Thank you

    • avatar Andy
      Reply

      Hiya!
      you can use oils or butter in small amounts for cooking.
      Go for the full-fat on Ph1 as it’s far more satiating. Stick to having it at mealtimes.

  25. avatar Margaret
    Reply

    I have been on this diet for 5 months and lost 2 stones. My cholesterol has gone up to 7 from 5. My doctor as advised me to come off the diet because. I really don’t want to do that because it’s the only diet that I am not hungry on and feel that I could stick to this diet.

  26. avatar Rachel
    Reply

    Can you eat seaweed in phase 2?
    I don’t usually eat it I thought it might be nice with the chilli I made from the recipe book

  27. avatar andy
    Reply

    I Have a physical job and I exercise every other day . What foods can I eat after exercise on this diet.

    • avatar Andy
      Reply

      Eat according the the phase that you are following and enough to satiate you appetite. Wait a while after exercising and you may find that your hunger diminishes.

  28. avatar S. Russell
    Reply

    Do I weigh safe grains in Phase Two…. re-reading and cant seem to see answer…maybe I am missing?! Thanks!

  29. avatar Faye
    Reply

    Which book do you recommend to get started with the diet. Do they all come with some basic recipes to help start me off?

  30. avatar Mairead Crosby
    Reply

    Hi, I started phase 1 yesterday and just wondering whats best to put in scrambled eggs and a omelette when u can’t have milk?

    Thanks

    • avatar Andy
      Reply

      I just use eggs, scrambled with a bit of butter. No need to ‘thin’ with milk or anything else.

  31. avatar Hannah smith
    Reply

    Hi
    Just wondering if i can have kefir instead of or aswell as plain yoghurt?

  32. avatar Jayne
    Reply

    Hi,
    New to this and as I am gluten and dairy intolerant I am wondering if this diet will cater for me with recipies that take the intolerances into account?
    Thanks,
    Jayne

    • avatar Andy
      Reply

      Phase 1 caters well for intolerances (no gluten or dairy) and many recipes in all recipe books cater for both intolerances.

  33. avatar Cheron Stevenson
    Reply

    Hi Andy
    I seem to remember reading something about leaving so many hours between eating a carb meal and a fat meal, but can’t remember where? Please can you advise me?
    Many thanks

    • avatar Andy
      Reply

      4 hours – That would be explained in Stop Counting Calories & Start Losing Weight.

    • avatar Andy
      Reply

      Never tried it for cooking. I understand that it has a low flash-point, so low-temp frying only.

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