Fork it The french way
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Why is the Fork It method a better way to eat ?
How will the Fork It method help me lose weight ?
What difference can a fork make at dinner ?
Can I extend the Fork It Only rule to the other meals throughout the day ?
How long do I need to stay on this diet ?
How can the Fork It method help change my relationship to food ?
What is the difference between Fork It’s strict and light options ?
Are frozen foods accepted on this method ?
I like to finish dinner by eating something sweet. How do I handle that ?
How can this method be adapted for eating out and for business dinners ?
Can I still drink while on this diet ?
I am what you would call obese. Can this method help me ?

For most of us, our daily eating habits are actually contrary to our body’s needs. We skip breakfast, eat a quick lunch that is often lacking in proper nutrition and then end the day with a huge dinner. Eating lightly at dinnertime is actually better for our bodies, and it helps us to lose weight and to alter our appetite in a good way. For example, pretty quickly after adapting to this method, you should wake up hungry in the morning and will want to eat breakfast. Having eaten breakfast, you won’t be as hungry at lunchtime. You also won’t need to snack incessantly in the afternoon and will be satisfied to eat a light diner. All in all, you will consume fewer calories later in the day and will still feel satisfied. This way of eating is better suited to your metabolism.Back to the top

One of this method’s primary benefits is that it reflects a new way of eating rather than a diet with restrictions. Here, the act of eating a lighter dinner becomes part of the daily routine rather than an enforced restriction. Restrictions are what make dieting so difficult over the long term.

After just a few weeks of following this method and allowing your appetite to adjust to a different rhythm, you will discover that you no longer have to consciously think about eating this way. In the beginning, you will lose weight just from cutting back on fats and sugars in your evening meal. Afterwards, the modification of your dietary rhythm will help you to stabilize your weight. Plus, it won’t hurt that you will probably feel better physically as a result of your new eating routine.
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The fork helps us control what and how much we eat. The foods, which we can eat naturally with just a fork, tend to be proteins and carbohydrates, such as fish, vegetables, starches and grains. While these foods are filling, they not necessarily high in calories. With a fork in hand, we also eat slower, are more conscious of becoming full, and consequently eat less.Back to the top

The answer is no. The psychologists and nutritionists we spoke with all expressed the importance of limiting dietary restrictions while on a diet. The restrictions are what make dieting so difficult and are often what result in the failure of the diet. What is unique about this method as compared to many other diets is that the evening meal is the only time you must restrain your food choices. Furthermore, the Fork It method isn’t really restrictive because you can satisfy your evening cravings at your next breakfast or lunch of the following day.

The importance of meeting your nutritional requirements is another reason not to limit utensils at breakfast and lunch. The doctors and nutritional experts we interviewed all confirmed that the Fork It method was completely safe provided that practitioners met their daily nutritional needs. According to the French National Nutritional Health Program (PNNS), the daily dietary requirements include eating at least 5 fruits and vegetables, and a source of calcium (milk, cheese, yogurt, etc), while limiting consumption of saturated fats found in meats, cheese, eggs, etc. In addition, it is advised to practice some form of daily exercise.
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In the words of one of the nutritional experts we worked with, “A good diet lasts for life.” A bad diet creates frustration while trying to lose weight and will never be successful as it cannot be maintained for a long time period.

The challenge with most diets is that we must alter eating habits, and this process usually involves depriving ourselves the pleasures of food we enjoy. So, when we eventually lose weight on a “frustration-type” diet and are able to eat normally again, our bodies still remember the deprivation we experienced. As a consequence, dieters often end up gaining back the weight they had lost and then need to diet again. This action and reaction starts a terrible cycle known as the yo-yo syndrome, which involves dieting, loosing weight then gaining it back.

The way to prevent the yo-yo syndrome is not to frustrate your body! The Fork It method accepts and understands the importance of avoiding dietary frustration. Over a period of time, you can discover a more balanced way of eating, which involves meeting your daily nutritional requirements, not having to deal with dietary frustration, and learning to eat the foods you want to eat in reasonable manner. When you get to this point, you will understand the futility of asking how long you should stay on a diet. The Fork It method is not a diet, but a way of life that you can adopt, free from restrictions and difficulty.
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This method will help you to implement and follow an important nutritional concept : begin the day with a copious breakfast, follow it with a good size lunch and finish it with a light dinner. As a general rule, we expend less energy at night than throughout the day, and our eating habits should reflect that shift. Think about how uncomfortable you feel when you eat too much. Whereas when you eat lightly in the evening, you do not go to bed on a full stomach, you will probably sleep better, and you should wake up hungry the following morning, ready for breakfast.

This dietary rhythm can help you reacquaint yourself with healthy feelings of hunger and being full. Many of us, after years of dieting and overeating, have lost touch with that direct message from our body. The goal here is for you to feel better, both physically and psychologically, and to establish a healthy relationship with food. We think the Fork It method can help you do that.
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These two options share the basics: you get to eat, more or less, what you want. Eat whatever you like for breakfast, do the same thing at lunch, and at dinner eat only what you would eat naturally with a fork. Your breakfast can include bread, butter, honey, eggs, ham or bacon and fruit. For lunch, you are allowed a first course and a main course and a dessert, all things that can be eaten with a knife, fork and spoon. It is important that you don’t feel deprived during the day.

For both options, you do need to get in the habit of eating foods according to a specific time of the day. For example, by late afternoon, it is best to cut back as much as you can on your consumption of oils and fats. If you do get hungry around 5, then satisfy your craving with a little something sweet, like fruit or even chocolate.

The main difference between the two options is that the light option is more lenient. At dinner, you continue to eat foods with just a fork, but you are allowed to use a knife in the preparation. That means you can extend your dinner menu to include raw vegetables, salads, cut up pieces of light meat, (i.e. chicken and turkey), shellfish with the shells removed (clams, oysters, mussels and shrimp), boiled eggs and omelets.
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Before buying any frozen products, take a look at the ingredients. It is best to avoid foods with ingredients ending in the suffix -ose. This is most likely an indication that glucose is present. Outside of this factor, decide for yourself if the food you are buying can be eaten naturally with a fork. If the answer is yes, then go ahead.Back to the top

This method advises against sweets in the evening. Brushing your teeth after dinner with your favorite choice of toothpaste (mint, strawberry, bubble-gum, etc) will leave your mouth tasting fresh. Or as a substitute for something sweet, we recommend drinking an herbal tea, such as fruit, licorice or anis-flavored teas.Back to the top

It helps if you choose the restaurant as some food is more easily adapted to our method than others. But, nevertheless, you can usually find something on a menu that can be eaten with just a fork. Certainly, a steak and potatoes type of restaurant would offer limited choices, but most restaurants today offer at least a couple of fish dishes on their menu. And some restaurants will have a variety of possible foods. For example, Italian restaurants offer pasta and risotto, Indian restaurants usually have a surplus of vegetarian dishes, sushi is a good alternative at a Japanese restaurant, and Chinese restaurants have rice dishes and shrimp or vegetable dishes.

You can also think about eating less or separating the food that requires a fork. Another solution, if you are feeling up to it, is to explain that you are following a special dietary regimen. Most people are interested in hearing about healthy and lighter ways to eat.
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There are those who believe that no liquid should accompany meals as it hampers the efficiency of the gastric juices of our digestion. However, for most of us, drinking during meals is an accepted and customary practice. If you want to lose weight, it is obviously best to limit consumption of wine, beer and sodas. That said, we have noticed that the scales do not indicate any difference at our morning weigh-ins after an evening when one or two glasses of wine was consumed as opposed to evenings when only water accompanied dinner.

Naturally it is best to avoid an excess of alcohol consumption by not drinking too much at dinner and by not drinking every evening. Pregnant women should always abstain from alcohol. We prefer to savor the pleasure of drinking for dinners with friends and/or restaurant dining, provided of course, that those drinking are not driving!
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Are you truly “obese” or do you just feel that you are very overweight? If your weight problem prevents you from living a normal life or if it endangers your life in anyway, then we definitely advise consulting a doctor or nutrition specialist before beginning this method. The physicians and medical specialists we consulted all agreed there was no danger in following the Fork It method. However, in your case, you need a complete medical exam to verify your physical health before beginning any diet or weight loss program. This is especially pertinent if you have experienced failures with numerous diets. It is difficult to overcome the challenges and frustrations of years of unsuccessful dieting. You need help and guidance to establish a healthy relationship to food. Nevertheless, if you are interested in the Fork It method, you should speak to your physician about it and see how s/he recommends adapting it to your needs.Back to the top