Optifast - How does it work?

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Since a reduction of 3,500 calories is needed to lose a pound, most of the liquid diets consist of a very low calorie intake of 400-800 calories a day .  Most liquid diets consist of a high protein shake instead of eating meals.  Since the diet lacks the excess calories and fat calories, the body can directly start to burn the already digested fat.  The main reason these liquid diets are effective is because of their "complete removal of patients from the food environment".  These diets usually cause a decrease in energy which results in a rapid weight loss of about 3-4 pounds a week.
Some of the new liquid diet programs such as Optifast consists of a 3 month fasting period (420-800 calories a day in liquid shakes), a "refeeding" stage (sensible meals), and a maintenance stage (patients eat sensibly on their own).  This three step diet method is performed in conjunction with an exercise program and support groups.  These types of liquid diet programs help the patient understand the importance of long-term dietary change, exercise, and behavioral modification
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