What Is the Satiating Diet?

Satiating diet

Verywell / Debbie Burkhoff

At Verywell, we believe there is no one-size-fits-all approach to a healthy lifestyle. Successful eating plans need to be individualized and take the whole person into consideration. Prior to starting a new diet plan, consult with your healthcare provider or a registered dietitian, especially if you have an underlying health condition.

What Is the Satiating Diet?

The satiating diet is a realistic approach to safe and sustainable weight loss that promotes whole foods that are healthy and satiating. In other words, you will have the freedom to choose healthy foods that promote feelings of fullness and satisfaction. 

The satiating diet plan is inspired by research done at Université Laval in Quebec City, Canada, and published in 2017. It advocates for a diet high in protein, such as fish, and in fiber from whole grains, fruits, and vegetables.

What Experts Say

“The Satiating Diet is based on foods that help to promote feelings of satisfaction and includes foods from all food groups. While choosing foods you find satisfying is an important part of healthy eating, much of the promotion of this diet is focused on appearance and weight, rather than health, which can limit sustainability and be harmful to body image.”
Willow Jarosh, MS, RD

The 7-Day Diet Plan

 While there are many different versions of the diet, here is one example:

  • Day 1: Egg and cottage cheese scramble with spinach and jalapenos, grapefruit; chicken salad made with avocado, whole-grain bread, side salad with olive oil and vinegar dressing; Greek yogurt with berries and walnuts; white fish with lemon, artichokes, and roasted grape tomatoes; green beans with olive oil and almonds
  • Day 2: Steel-cut oats with almond butter and berries, milk; tuna salad with olive oil, lemon juice, cucumbers, bell peppers, hot peppers, and quinoa; cottage cheese with diced apples and cinnamon; sirloin steak salad with blue cheese, balsamic vinegar, olive oil dressing, brown rice pilaf
  • Day 3: Boiled eggs, asparagus, roasted sweet potato, orange; whole wheat tortilla with turkey breast, swiss cheese, lettuce, tomato, red onion, and olive oil mayonnaise; homemade tomato soup, whole-grain roll; black bean pasta, lean ground sirloin meat, and vegetable tomato sauce with chilies, parmesan cheese, sauteed zucchini
  • Day 4: Whole wheat French toast with berries and Greek yogurt, orange; quinoa bowl with salmon, cucumber, tzatziki, tomato, red onion, feta, and hot peppers; apple with almonds; sirloin steak and vegetable soup, baked sweet potato
  • Day 5: Boiled eggs mixed with Greek yogurt, olive oil, green onion, whole grain toast, baby spinach, grapefruit; chickpea feta salad with red wine vinaigrette, cucumbers, tomatoes, olives; whipped ricotta with blueberries, cinnamon, walnuts; chicken breast with sundried tomatoes, artichokes, spinach in tomato sauce, rice pilaf with chili powder
  • Day 6: Steel-cut oats, walnuts, raspberries, banana slices, milk; canned salmon with olive oil, lemon juice, chives, capers on whole-grain roll, spinach salad; cottage cheese with diced apples and cinnamon; zucchini noodles with chicken breast, marinara sauce, roasted vegetables, goat cheese, baked potato
  • Day 7: Greek yogurt, berries, whole wheat toast; brown rice bowl with chickpeas and jalapenos, sirloin steak, roasted asparagus, tomatoes, balsamic reduction, goat cheese; baked apple with toasted oats and coconut; poached trout with lemon, olive oil, broccoli, sweet potato

What You Can Eat

The satiating diet draws inspiration from the Mediterranean diet by encouraging you to eat healthy fats in moderate amounts and consume plenty of fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins.

It also includes healthy fats and suggests eating certain dairy products like yogurt. And don’t forget the chili powder. The satiating diet urges you to get some capsaicin in your foods during the day. 

Rather than dictating specific times of day to eat or not eat or only emphasizing calories and macronutrients, the satiating diet focuses on getting in touch with your body’s cues to hunger and making wholesome choices to satisfy those needs. 

Lean Protein

Protein is recommended at each meal on the satiating diet. Include a serving of lean protein at each meal. Choose from:

  • Lean meats
  • Poultry
  • Fish
  • Eggs
  • Low-fat or fat-free milk and dairy products
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Tofu and soy

Whole Grains

You'll need five daily servings of whole-grain products rich in fiber (at least four grams of fiber per portion). Examples include:

  • 1 slice of whole-grain bread
  • 1/2 whole-grain bagel or pita pocket
  • 1/2 cup of brown rice (cooked)
  • 1/2 cup whole-wheat pasta (cooked)
  • 1/2 cup ready-to-eat cereals
  • 3/4 cup of oatmeal
  • 4-6 whole-grain crackers 

Healthy Fats

The satiating diet recommends sticking to unsaturated fats. Good choices include:

  • Olive oil
  • Nuts such as almonds, cashews, and pecans
  • Avocados
  • Olives
  • Nut butters

Herbs and Spices

The satiating diet champions the use of capsaicin, a substance with potential appetite-curbing and metabolism-boosting properties that makes jalapeños and other peppers so hot.  

Legumes

The outline of the satiating diet directs readers to eat one legume meal per week. Focus on a vegetarian meal based on:

  • Adzuki beans
  • Black beans
  • Soybeans
  • Anasazi beans
  • Fava beans
  • Garbanzo beans (chickpeas)
  • Kidney beans
  • Lima beans

Fruits

Aim for four servings of whole, fresh fruits each day. Examples include:

  • 1 apple
  • 1 orange
  • 1medium-sized banana
  • 1/2 cup of other fruits like raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, mango, papaya, and pineapple

Vegetables

Aim for four servings of whole, fresh vegetables each day. Examples of servings include:

  • 1 cup of salad
  • 1 cup of vegetable soup
  • 1 medium-sized carrot
  • 1/2 cup of spinach, broccoli, peas, asparagus, kale, or other fresh veggies

What You Cannot Eat

You will focus more on what you can eat and less on what you have to eliminate on the satiating diet. That said, there are some recommended guidelines to help you plan your meals. Avoid foods that don't offer fiber, protein, or healthy fats as well as foods that don't support overall health.

  • Food with hydrogenated fatty acids
  • Foods with trans-fatty acids
  • Foods with excess saturated fatty acids
  • Alcohol (avoid in excess)
  • Caffeinated beverages (avoid in excess)
  • Salt (avoid in excess)

How to Prepare the Satiating Diet & Tips

When following the satiating diet, you will be eating based on your individual hunger and fullness cues. There are no calorie restrictions or a set number of meals to eat each day. That said, the study did reference eating breakfast, lunch, and dinner. It also included one snack each day.

Modifications are simple with the satiating diet. If you are a vegetarian, include plant-based protein rather than fish or meat. If you can't eat gluten, swap out gluten-containing products for gluten-free options.

The satiating diet is mainly made up of whole foods that research suggests may play a role in reducing appetite and/or improving satiety. This includes healthy fats, lean proteins, and fiber-rich foods, using the following macronutrient breakdown:

  • 20% to 25% protein
  • 30% to 35% fat
  • 45% to 50% carbohydrates

Additionally, the diet recommends at least 25 grams of fiber daily and emphasizes consuming capsaicin-containing foods (hot pepper or red peppers). Since the satiating diet is more of a lifestyle than a diet with a start and end date, you can decide how to time your meals. 

There is no one website, book, app, or specific plan to follow for the satiating diet. In addition to the 2017 study, many experts base a lot of their recommendations on the principles of the Mediterranean diet.

Since there is no maximum calorie requirement, the satiating diet is safe during pregnancy; those who are pregnant can follow this plan and still meet nutritional needs to keep their bodies and growing babies healthy.

Sample Shopping List

The satiating diet does not eliminate any food groups but focuses on plenty of healthy, whole foods. Most foods will be accessible at your local grocery store, but it could also be helpful to visit a produce market for your fresh fruit and vegetables.

Keep in mind this is not a definitive shopping list, and if following the diet, you may find other foods that work best for you.

  • Fresh fruit (apples, bananas, oranges)
  • Frozen fruit (raspberries, strawberries, mango)
  • Fresh vegetables (sweet potatoes, greens, mushrooms)
  • Frozen vegetables (broccoli, green beans)
  • Lean protein (skinless poultry, sirloin steak, tofu, legumes)
  • Low-fat or fat-free dairy products (yogurt, milk, cottage cheese)
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Hot peppers
  • Healthy oils (olive oil, avocado oil)
  • Whole grains (whole wheat bread, brown rice, oatmeal)

Pros of the Satiating Diet

Potential benefits of this eating plan include:

  • Sustainability and practicality in the real world: Since this diet is more about making healthy choices that fill you up, it may be easier to stick to. Plus, the plan is intended to become a lifestyle, which means it is sustainable and practical. 
  • Flexibility: Since there are no special foods to buy, you may find it easier to adhere to the guidelines when dining out, at parties, or eating on the go.
  • Cost: Since the satiating diet does not require you to purchase special foods or supplements, there should be no additional costs to your grocery bill. If you see an increase in the amount you spend, it will likely be from eating more fresh produce and lean protein sources.
  • Safety: In general, the satiating diet is safe for most populations. If you are on a supervised, reduced-calorie diet, you will need to consult with your doctor or dietitian before following this plan. Also, if you eat a special diet for diabetes, hypertension, or any other health condition, check with your doctor before starting the satiating diet.
  • General nutrition: The satiating diet recommends many nutritious, whole foods and uses evidence-based recommendations for these food choices. Truly satiating foods are often the most nutritious foods, since they provide the nutrient content that your body craves for optimal health.
  • Balanced approach: No food is off-limits in the satiating diet. Rather than following a “don’t eat” list, you are encouraged to make healthy, filling choices that are generally available and easy to incorporate into meals and snacks. 
  • Sustainable weight loss: Since the satiating diet focuses on keeping yourself full and satisfied with your meals, it is much less likely that you will feel deprived and discontinue the diet. Long-term lifestyle changes and consistency are what lead to sustained weight loss.

Cons of the Satiating Diet

Drawbacks of this diet include:

  • Limited resources about the plan: Since the basic premise of the satiating diet came from a study, the only place to get information about the diet is in the study. Even then, the guidelines apply to the participants in the study. For people that prefer to access a book, website, or app outlining the details of the diet, following the satiating diet may present some challenges.
  • No structured plan to follow: Unlike other popular diet plans, the satiating diet provides you with general guidelines to follow, but it does not detail meal planning, timing, calories, or diet duration. This lack of sample meals, weekly calendars, and specific macronutrients can make a diet difficult to follow for some people.
  • Lack of calorie control: The satiating diet does not provide calorie limitations. This may be difficult to manage, since calorie control is the most important weight management factor. If you have struggle with portion control, it might be a good idea to talk with a registered dietician to come up with a calorie range that works for you.

Is the Satiating Diet a Healthy Choice for You?

The basic premise of the satiating diet focuses on a balanced, whole-food way of eating that is sustainable, realistic, and easy to fit into your life. It aligns with many expert opinions about making eating a lifestyle and not a diet you follow for a set amount of time. The satiating diet is very similar to the nutrition recommendations from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

Both the satiating diet and USDA guidelines encourage you to eat plenty of fruits, vegetables, grains, fat-free or low-fat dairy, a variety of proteins, and healthy oils. Plus, they both advocate for limiting saturated and trans fats, added sugars, and sodium. 

While the guiding principles of the satiating diet are not new, the research and data that the plan is based on are more recent. The study results showed that the satiating diet participants lost a significant amount of weight and body fat. They also reported feeling fullness after meals compared to the participants in the control group.

Registered dietitian Emmie Satrazemis, RD, CSSD, the nutrition director at Trifecta, says it is likely a fairly well-balanced diet and an acceptable approach supported by many health experts. “It really is just another way of explaining why eating a balanced, nutrient-rich diet is beneficial for your health and weight loss, with a focus on hunger-fullness cues,” she says.

A Word From Verywell

The satiating diet can help guide you toward a well-balanced, sustainable way of eating that allows you to enjoy healthy food from all the major food groups. Following the diet can lead to weight loss if that is your goal, and an improvement in your overall health. Adhering to a regular exercise plan and ensuring that you get quality sleep will also contribute to your weight loss goals.

Remember, following a long-term or short-term diet may not be necessary for you and many diets out there simply don’t work, especially long-term. While we do not endorse fad diet trends or unsustainable weight loss methods, we present the facts so you can make an informed decision that works best for your nutritional needs, genetic blueprint, budget, and goals.

If your goal is weight loss, remember that losing weight isn’t necessarily the same as being your healthiest self, and there are many other ways to pursue health. Exercise, sleep, and other lifestyle factors also play a major role in your overall health. The best diet is always the one that is balanced and fits your lifestyle.

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2 Sources
Verywell Fit uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Arguin H, Tremblay A, Blundell JE, et al. Impact of a non-restrictive satiating diet on anthropometrics, satiety responsiveness and eating behaviour traits in obese men displaying a high or a low satiety phenotype. Br J Nutr. 2017;118(9):750-760. doi:10.1017/S0007114517002549

  2. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and U.S. Department of Agriculture. 2020 – 2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, ninth edition.