The Potato Hack is Making Potato Great Again


I hadn’t mentioned it in a previous post, but we’ve been up here at The Cabin since last Friday, with guests over the weekend, and I just plain haven’t felt that much like writing on the blog. It happens.

But I wanted to get a quick note out that Tim’s book, The Potato Hack: Weight Loss Simplified, is now out and available in print and Kindle. I saw a draft PDF copy, and it was great, and since then, Tim has added about anther 100 pages, including—I hear—many excellent photos by his award-winning photographer aunt. I haven’t seen the final yet, and it’s probably sitting in the mailbox at home, awaiting my return on Sunday.

In other news, I recorded a podcast with Tim last Sunday, and I hope to get that up soon, but I was waiting for the Kindle version to pop on Amazon since only the print was available as of a few days ago.

Well, let’s keep this short. You could search this blog to see what the potato hack or potato diet is all about but in this case, just get Tim’s book.


  1. Pam on March 31, 2016 at 15:27

    Mashed potatoes are pretty much my favorite food, but avoid them because of my blood sugar. How does this diet impact those who are insulin resistant or diabetic?

    • Richard Nikoley on March 31, 2016 at 16:11

      Hard to say in any specific case. In mine and family, LC caused insulin resistance and consequent way overshoots in BG, as though I was a metabolic couch potato.

      Not obsessing over the glucometer for some weeks while doing metabolic exercise brought everything back to normal for me. I recently ate a pound of mashed taters with about a TBS of butter and 1/4 cup milk, and topped out at 129, measuring in 30-minute increments.

      Your mileage may vary, but I can’t help but note that the insulin resistance (physiological, completely normal for glucose sparing for the brain) from LC dieting is very convenient for LC advocates.

    • Tim Steele on March 31, 2016 at 16:54

      Pam – What I have seen and heard from many people…those that are pre-diabetic (insulin resistant) almost all see improved FGB while doing a 3-5 day potato hack. They also see improved FBGs and PPs afterwards by continually adding more starchy carbs in their diet, especially when they adopt a whole-food, high fiber, low sugar/oil approach.

      Type 2 Diabetics on meds sometimes reprot that they need less meds to keep BGs stable.

      Type 1 Diabetics often report the need less insulin while potato hacking.

      If you have BG issues, please track them carefully while potato hacking…but don’t automatically discard the idea, it may surprise you!

    • Pam on March 31, 2016 at 17:14

      Thanks Richatd and Tim…I’m giving serious thought to trying it! I will check out your book, Tim ?

    • Ann on April 18, 2016 at 17:46

      Fat, not starch is the problem:

      • Richard Nikoley on April 18, 2016 at 18:02

        The problem, Ann, is that McDougall argues against omnivory even to slight amounts.

        As such, he’s an ideologue, making him an outright fraud as a phycisian.

        He’s dismissed. There are plenty of other places to go for honest advocacy of plenty of plants and starch in the diet, and to minimize fat to natural levels when you do that.

  2. TimothyD on March 31, 2016 at 15:55

    I got it last week. Loved it. Even though I have been following the Potato Hack phenomenon for a few years, I still learned more. Really liked all the little tweeks.

  3. Tim Steele on March 31, 2016 at 16:49

    Thanks! I hope the podcast was salvageable, my internet really sucks. I just wanted to point out that I enabled the “Matchbook” function on Amazon meaning that if you buy the book, you can get the Kindle version for $1.99 instead of $6.

    Please feel free to leave a review on Amazon if you like it, it help[s with the ratings.

    • Mycroft Jones on March 31, 2016 at 18:05

      I bought the paper version, but the Kindle version is still showing as $6 for me.

  4. Mycroft Jones on March 31, 2016 at 17:53

    Tim, how do I get the $1.99 kindle version? Do I have to purchase the paperback first, THEN the kindle version drops in price?

    • Gemma on March 31, 2016 at 23:48


      The info is here:

      Kindle MatchBook is a feature that allows customers who have previously purchased a physical book from Amazon to purchase the Kindle version for $2.99 or less

      The MatchBook price will only be shown if you’re signed into the same account the physical book was purchased from.

    • Tim Steele on March 31, 2016 at 18:39

      When I pull it up, I see a spot right on the main page that says ‘Matchbook Price $1.99’ but if I remember, you are in Canada…maybe it’s different there?

    • Richard Nikoley on March 31, 2016 at 19:09

      Jesus Fucking Christ.

      This is Free The Animal and you’re being a little pussy girl wasting everyone’s time over Starbucks multiples.

      I’m going to remember that I hate you, and wish you not well, Mycroft Jones. I’m going to remember what a cheap fucking bastard and what a little pussy girl you are, not to mention a throwaway organism.

      Go fuck yourself.

    • king of the one eyed people on April 1, 2016 at 04:33

      I agree with Richard Mycroft. Just hit pay now whatever the fucking price and skip your next coffee. Personally I think you’re lucky you dodged the nasty ‘C’ word for that comment.

      Take the advice about fucking yourself too. I’ve been fucking myself for a long time now – hard to stop after a while.

    • Richard Nikoley on April 1, 2016 at 09:49

      Well, I’m fine now, but cheapskate shit really chaps my ass. For instance, people who, when you go to a restaurant and when everyone has had some meal in some reasonable range then wants to split the tab by who had what, quibble over the tip, complain that one person had a cocktail, etc.

      Just split the damn bill and STFU.


    • Mycroft Jones on April 3, 2016 at 17:50

      Not ordinarily a cheapskate, but am going through a coupon-clipping time of life right now. I thought it was swell of Tim to do the MatchBook thing; very classy.

      • Richard Nikoley on April 3, 2016 at 20:05

        Well, you’re a good sport.

        Tim’ll probably get more dollar sales that way cause it makes sense to have both for a lot of people, rather than choose between the two. Totally greedy. :)

    • Tim Steele on April 3, 2016 at 20:14

      Mycroft Jones – Did you ever figure it out? We were reading that the MatchBook program is one of the better deals for Amazon books but underused. I wish I could have made the Matchbook free or 99 cents, but the lowest I could go was $1.99. But Amazon has dropped the price of the print book to $8-something, a 29% savings! Not sure how long that will last.

    • Mycroft Jones on April 3, 2016 at 20:22

      Thanks Tim. I read Gemma’s link. I purchased the paperback copy; I don’t ordinarily buy Kindle unless that is the only option. Before I bought the paperback, there was no Matchbook option. I’ve logged in and out several times since purchasing, did it again after Amazon shipped it, still no Matchbook price. So my theory at this time is it may be done on a country by country basis. $1.99 is fine; lets a person start reading right away while they wait for the paper copy to arrive. Best of both worlds; read it right away, but have it on the shelf to refer to, or something concrete you can give to friends.

  5. Sheena Hunt on April 1, 2016 at 01:55

    Hi all,
    My tuppenyworth on this subject…

    I’ve been a relative LC-er for the last eighteen months or so, eating the odd potato but living mostly on lots of veggies, a bit of meat, fish, eggs… and successfully lost around five stones (70lbs).

    Maintaining has been simple enough, and I enjoy the food so sticking to this way of life is certainly achievable. However, like a lot of paleo-LC-primal-whatever converts, I have struggled with those last few (and very much vanity) pounds. And my impulse control has been a bit out of whack too. Over the last month I have put on about a stone (14lbs) and even my husband has mentioned the slight widening of my ass. Better do something then.

    So it was with disbelief, then research, interest and then experimentation that has brought me to try this potato hack. I love spuds, me.

    Three day result, 5lbs down. Brilliant.
    I know a chunk of this is water, but still, pretty good for a start. I will continue over the weekend and then decide if I want to go on a bit longer. So far, though, I’m actually enjoying it, and have just bought the Kindle version of Tim’s book.

    I am mostly eating cold / warmed boiled-and-cooled peeled potatoes, with a little salt and some chives, twice daily to satiation. And a couple of fried duck eggs to go with my evening tatties yesterday. Yummy.
    This evening I’ll add some fried liver for a good whack of nutrients.

    Did I say I was enjoying this?? :)

    I do occasionally feel hungry but it is just a nagging sensation that quickly goes away. I’ll eat when ‘properly’ hungry but not ravenous.

    And I love reading about others’ stories. Yes, this isn’t for everyone. But it is working for me, and even if my hubby thinks I’ve finally gone nuts as long as the results are what I want and I feel good, that’s all that matters! :)

    Thanks for blogging on this, Richard. Once again, you’re an inspiration! :)

  6. Sheena Hunt on April 1, 2016 at 02:29

    ….aaaaaaaand a follow-up to my last posted comment after reading the beginning of Tim’s book…

    Going to do it right, from now, so scrapping the chives and liver for today. And the next few days.

    Spuds, the whole (peeled!) spuds, and nothing but the spuds!

    • Richard Nikoley on April 1, 2016 at 11:21

      Thanks for the testimonial, Sheena, just tossed it up on Facebook and Twitter.

    • Sheena Hunt on April 4, 2016 at 11:02

      Update #2: Finished my short first dabble with the Hack last night (Sunday). I can report that over the few days I tried it I am now 7lbs down from my starting weight, not bad. Although my weight had stayed the same for the last two days due to hormones and a sluggish digestion.
      Two days (today and tomorrow) of normal but lower fat eating as I’m missing green veggies. Tonight’s dinner of pot roast paprika chicken with a variety of steamed veggies was pretty good! And no potatoes. Probably some liver at some point tomorrow, then back on the spuds from Weds through to Sunday again.
      My hubby still thinks I’ve lost it but at the same time he seems to be appreciating the results…!

  7. Cathy on April 1, 2016 at 08:10

    I found this link on Daily Mail this morning. Read about the potato, its fascinating and I am happy to see the news is spreading about the RS function of cooked and cooled. In fact, if I read it correctly, its the ONE redeeming factor about eating potatoes according to the article.
    Richard, I was thinking about the spare use of fat in your making of mashed potatoes recently and it dawned on me that I used to do this very thing when I made the Kraft mac and cheese when my kids were little. This was in the Arghh!!! fat is bad days of the 90’s so when I read the side of the box and it called for a 1/4 cup of butter I would just put in a scant bit and all the 1/4 cup of (skim) milk. I don’t remember it being dry or inedible.
    I also am exploring the fact that LC may have created a kind of insulin resistance in myself. Eating all kinds of carbs now, even gasp!!! bread.

  8. ramon on April 1, 2016 at 08:58

    I was thinking about your weight swings, Richard. I wonder could salt imbalances have caused the extra big big drop followed by the 10 pound rebound.

    Anyway my own n=1 starts now


    • Richard Nikoley on April 1, 2016 at 11:24

      My guess it was a combo of dropping all booze completely, high potassium in potatoes, and being pretty sparing on the salt. Perhaps that all caused a sort of excessive water dump and then everything just settled out.

  9. cremes on April 1, 2016 at 12:00

    So I did a 3-day potato hack this week Monday through Wednesday. went from 198 to 193. I plan to do another one next week and maybe again the week after.

    I’m male, 43, 6′ tall, and currently weigh about 193lbs. I am not heavy though I have started doing battle with a little middle-age spread around my gut. For years my steady-state weight was between 180 – 185 so my move up to a new “set point” in the 190s doesn’t exactly make me happy. My fasting BG is consistently 85-95 though my BP has been creeping up the last few years.

    I’ve done the hack before but was inspired to try it again in honor of Tim’s book being published. I’ve never been truly overweight but the last few years I have been spiking up to around 210 by the end of the year after all the holiday parties and other temptations get the best of me. My wife and I take January off and eat an “autoimmune protocol” diet for the entire month, drop the booze, etc. I almost always drop ~15 pounds that month most of which is water from inflammation caused by all the hard partying of December.

    From Tim’s book, I prefer the roasted version of the potato wherein you wrap them in foil and “steam” them in the oven. With my elevated BP I want as much potassium as possible so I avoid boiling them (which can leech a lot of the minerals and vitamins out). I started the week with a 5 lb bag of yukon golds (my favorite) and steamed half of the bag on Sunday night. They spent overnight in the fridge. I ate that half bag over Monday and Tuesday. Tuesday evening I steamed the other half of the bag for Wednesday. On Wednesday I hate maybe half of those and tossed the rest.

    I was sated the entire time. At Tim’s insistence, I did not adulterate them at all with a minor exception. I did sprinkle some pink himalayan salt on Wed for flavor but otherwise kept them plain.

    It was pretty easy for me though I was tired of the lack of variety by Wednesday. I’ll try Richard’s potato soup next week to spice things up.

    I lost weight and my BP got a lot better just in 3 days, so I probably do have some potassium deficiency. I’ll need to work on that.

    Anyway, I think I’ll probably “hack” for 3 days a week 2-3 times per month until I get back to my 180-185 weight. It will be interesting to see how long it takes to achieve that plus I’m interested to see if I can maintain it. Unlike Richard I will not be giving up the booze; our wine cellar and my whisky collection are too good to ignore for long. :)

    Lastly, I usually do an annual water fast in late July for 7-10 days. I think this year I will potato hack instead. I’ve kept journals from my prior fasts so I’ll definitely compare notes to see what differences, if any, it makes.

    • cremes on April 4, 2016 at 08:13

      Started Hack #2 today. Bought 2lbs of purple potatoes and 4lbs of yukon golds yesterday. Wrapped all of the purples and about half of the golds in foil and baked them last night. (According to Tim’s book, this “steams” them in their own water thereby retaining a bunch of moisture and all vitamins and minerals that might leech out when boiling.)

      This morning I peeled and quartered the remaining golds and make Richard’s potato soup recipe. Just had a bowl (after salting it carefully… probably ended up with 2-3 teaspoons of salt total) and it was quite tasty. I also put in quite a bit of black pepper… love the taste.

      If that *entire pot* is only around 1900 calories, I am amazed. There is no way in hell I could eat that whole pot in a day. So, my plan is this:

      Monday (weighed in at 197… had a few Corpse Reviver #2s yesterday so I’m a tad inflamed)
      1. Had 3 ladles of soup for breakfast.
      2. Will have 3 cooled-in-fridge-overnight-but-room-temp-on-counter spuds for lunch.
      3. Will have another 3-5 ladles of soup for dinner.
      4. Tea (hibiscus, roobois, etc)

      1. 3 more baked potatoes for brunch. Probably with salt and vinegar.
      2. 3-5 ladles of soup for dinner
      3. Tea (hibiscus, roobois, etc)

      Plan to do same as Tuesday. Usually by Tuesday night I have virtually no hunger at all. I’ll make sure to eat at least 500 calories but I won’t push myself to overeat.

      Back to regular eating which means a) no breakfast, b) lunch might be some liver sausage, c) dinner with a buddy since my wife is working late. I’ll probably have a cocktail or glass of wine with dinner.

      I expect that by Thursday morning I’ll be 192-193 which would put me down about 1lb from the end of Hack #1. I’m happy to just drop a pound a week for the next few months with a target of 183.

      I’ll post updates to this thread until I either get bored with it or the comment section gets locked.

    • cremes on April 11, 2016 at 05:05

      Hack #3 starts today, Apr 11 2016.

      Last Thursday morning I ended the hack at 192lbs, so I was down 1lb more from the prior week when I ended the hack at 193. This is acceptable.

      This Monday going into it I am 197 (same as last Monday). By next Monday I should start seeing this weight drift downwards as well… there’s no point in losing a pound a week only to gain an extra pound a week back in 4 days. I know it’s mostly water but it isn’t *all* water either.

      Made Richard’s soup last night. Hard to believe that whole thing is only 1900-2000 calories. I’ll have a hard time finishing all of it by Wednesday. I also added more purple potatoes this time around. I find that I really like their texture and flavor.

      So, I have 6 lbs total potatoes to consume between now and Wednesday night. 4 of that 6 is in the soup and the other two were baked/steamed in the oven. Those will serve as snacks in between meals if I need them. If I don’t need them they will be added to evening soup one at a time until they are mostly gone by Wednesday night.

      Last week I also “fried” a few potatoes. I put 1tsp of olive oil in my cast iron and put thickly-sliced potatoes in there. I ground some pink himalayan salt on them, showered them in oregano and a little red-pepper flake and let them brown a bit. Very tasty. I’ll likely do that again Tuesday or Wednesday for variety.

      I’d say that lack of variety is the hardest part of this. The soup is really quite good but it gets boring over time. Straight potato also gets boring even if I salt them and use malt vinegar. Frying them is a nice change up but you need to be careful to moderate the oil. I haven’t done hash browns or any of the other modifications listed in the book but before long I’ll be forced to branch out a bit.

      See y’all in a week. Target is 190-191 by Thursday morning.

    • cremes on April 18, 2016 at 06:15

      Hack #4 starts today, April 18.

      Last Wednesday I veered off course and ate fried chicken for dinner to be social. I didn’t feel like explaining myself to our guests. Anyway, I extended the hack to Thursday through lunch and had a normal dinner on Thursday night.

      Friday morning I weighed in at 191lbs which is right on target. I’m down another 1lb for the week. Monday morning I weighed in at 195lbs which is 2 less than my usual Monday morning weight. I apparently didn’t put back on as much water weight as I usually do.

      With this week’s hack, I expect to achieve 189-190 by Thursday morning.

      I have been making Richard’s potato soup recipe the last few weeks. I love it. However, I just don’t understand how it can be *only* 1900 calories for the whole pot. I still have a quarter of it left from last week’s hack and will be eating it for dinner tonight. Between the soup and about 2lbs of steamed potatoes I feel full and sated the entire time. It feels ridiculous that I’m not hungry from so little food.

      I just steamed some potatoes this morning. They cooling on the counter. I made 2lbs for today and started thawing the last of my potato soup leftover from the last hack. For lunch I’ll likely fry some of the cooled potatoes with some salt, pepper, oregano, and a dash of red paper flake. I’ll use approximately 1tsp of ghee to coat the pan for a bit of browning. Dinner tonight will be half of the remaining soup (approximately 2-3 ladles full).

      I’ll steam a few more potatoes Monday night going into Tuesday so they can cool in the fridge. I usually skip breakfast because I don’t feel any hunger until around 11am or so. Lunch will be some sliced yukon golds with salt with the remainder of the soup. Dinner will probably be another batch of fried potatoes.

      Not sure what I’ll do yet but lunch & dinner will be formed from the remaining steamed yukon golds.

      For anyone curious about exercise, I usually skip rope for 12-15 minutes M-W-F mornings. On those days I also use my ab roller for 5-6 sets of 15 reps. I am trying to work up to doing standing rollouts. For now I am limited to doing them from my knees though I have started to mix in a set or two of “one-knee” rollouts. These help immensely with my back pain caused by tight psoas.

      I may also do 3-4 sets of 30 rep hindu squats. I may also swing my 40lb kettle bell for 2-3 sets of 50. It all depends on how busy I am at work (I work from home) and how many mental breaks I take during the day for a quick set of whatever.

      Back in a week.

    • cremes on April 25, 2016 at 07:30

      Hack #5 starts today, April 25.

      Ended the last hack at 190lbs. Based on my history, that is a clean 1 pound loss per 3-day hack. I expect to end this latest hack at 188-189lbs.

      I’ve discovered that my favorite way of eating potatoes is the following recipe.

      * Wrap 2-3 pounds of red and yellow potatoes in tinfoil and bake them in the oven at 350F for 65m. They will steam inside the foil. Unwrap and place in a bowl to cool; place in fridge for overnight.
      * Take 1-2lbs of potatoes and make thick slices (1/4 inch minimum). Quarter the slices.
      * In a cast iron, heat 1 teaspoon of ghee, bacon fat, or fat of your choice.
      * Rough chop 1 medium yellow onion and fry in the grease until they begin to soften (2-3m).
      * Drop the quartered potato slices into the cast iron and toss them around with a wooden spoon to get a light oil coating.
      * Liberally dust the pan contents with dried oregano (or marjoram), red pepper flake, garlic powder, salt, and black pepper. (Yes, I like the combo of all these spices.)
      * Fry for 8-12m stirring about once every 3m.
      * Scrape onto a plate and eat.

      I’m starting this latest hack at a touch under 193lbs. If you read my earlier updates, you’ll note I always put several pounds of water weight back on. Prior to this I was putting 4-7lbs of water back on but these weekend I only put 3lbs back on.

      No soup this week. While I love it, I need to branch out.

      I plan to have the fried potatoes for lunch M-W. I’ll likely have a bottle of kombucha with lunch each day during the hack.

      For dinner I will eat room-temperature steamed potatoes with a bit of himalayan sea salt and maybe another spice or two. I also plan to have a small portion of baked chicken breast that was rubbed with lemon & oregano. Probably 4-5 ounces. This will help break up the monotony of so many potatoes.

      One new addition this week is my home-filled turmeric capsules. I filled 50 #0 sized capsules last night with ground turmeric (75%) and ground black pepper (25%). I’ll take 2 capsules at each meal, so 6 caps a day. I am still trying out Richard’s raw garlic suggestion in the morning, so I down my first 2 caps with that “breakfast” before I have my usual morning tea (hibiscus).

      I’ll probably go donate blood today too. Time to dump some iron. I try to donate every 8-12 weeks.

      For exercise, I did my 12m of jump rope this morning. I’m on session #4 of doing a rotation between single-leg jumps. My calves never burn but they do get quite tired by the end of the session. When flexed they now look like an anatomy drawing. Yikes. I’m also still doing my ab-roller and kettle bell swings though I’ll probably skip those today due to the blood donation.

      I usually do 3-5 sets of 15 reps of ab-rollouts from my knees. I recently started holding the flat position for a 1,2,3…,15 count during the set. At rep 12 my form starts to go wobbly at which point I end the set.

      I’m doing 3-5 sets of 35 two-handed kettle bell swings.

      All exercises are done M, W, & F with the weekend off.

      Overall target weight is 183lbs, so at this pace I should achieve that by June 9.

    • cremes on May 2, 2016 at 08:51

      Hack #6 starts today, May 2. Ended the last hack at 188lbs. Starting today’s hack at 191lbs which clearly denotes the lowest number of regained pounds between hacks. I didn’t do anything differently. As a matter of fact, I ate quite a bit… fatty guacamole, a peanut-butter-cup blizzard from DQ, ribs + fries from my favorite BBQ joint, a few whiskies, and a half bottle of good pinot nor. That didn’t all happen on one day but it definitely happened Thu-Sun. My guess is that I was *still losing* weight even after the end of the hack, so I still regained same pounds but just from a lower threshold.

      BTW, I have had a Tanita scale for about the last 15 years. It has a built-in body fat gauge (sends an electric current through your legs & balls). I don’t put a lot of stock into it. I normally display between 13 & 16% body fat according to it. This morning it showed 11% which was a bit of a shock. Maybe at the end of my hacks I’ll go to UIC and get a hydrostatic measurement in their “pool.”

      Anyway, back on the horse today.

      Invested last few cloves of garlic from a bulb. Took 2 1g capsules of turmeric & black pepper (homemade).

      For lunch will “fry” one *large* red potato with oregano, red pepper flake, cayenne, salt + pepper. A little ghee will get things rolling. 2 turmeric pills.

      For dinner, will have 12-15 ounces of Richard’s Potato Soup + some leftover ribs from Sunday (about 4). I’ve been adding a little protein (typically chicken breast) each evening to add variety. This will be my fattiest entry so I’m curious to see what happens. 2 turmeric pills.

      Jump rope at moderate/quick pace for 12 minutes alternating left & right legs 10-reps each. 5 set of 15 ab-rollouts from kneeling position. Either 90 hindu squats or 50 two-handed kettle bell swings (or combo thereof).

      More garlic in morning + turmeric pills.

      Just soup.

      More soup + steamed potato.

      No exercise other than walking dogs.


      Fried potatoes. 2 turmeric.

      Fried potatoes + some protein. Maybe nigiri sushi (4 pieces yellowtail or similar). 2 turmeric.

      Same exercise as Monday.

      Goal weight is 186lbs which would put me 2 under last week’s goal.

    • cremes on May 9, 2016 at 11:47

      Hack #7 starts today, May 9. Ended last week’s hack at 188lbs, so I was flat for the week. Then I went completely off the rails the next several days and so I start this week’s hack at 196lbs. I can guarantee that 5lbs of that is water added on Sunday. I had lots of cake and many Manhattans. Oh well.

      I’ll note that I didn’t lose any additional weight last week. I experimented with my fried potatoes and started adding a little bit of meat (ham, chicken breast, etc). I did that for *every* meal. While it made the meals more interesting and palatable, I clearly added too much fat back.

      So, back to the basics this week.

      Fried potatoes for lunch (reds and yellows). No onion added. No meat added. Just spices.
      For dinner, same as lunch but with a little added marinated chicken breast (about 3oz).

      Lunch, fried potatoes same as Monday.
      Dinner, fried potatoes plus a little chicken, same as Monday.

      ditto for both.

      I have decided that for the fried potatoes that I really prefer reds and russets. Yellows are good “all around” potatoes but they don’t crisp up well in the pan which makes them less interesting from a textural standpoint.

      Exercise will remain the same as last week: jump rope, kettle bell, squats, ab roller. Might add in some pull ups.

      Target weight is 187 lbs. I assume the 5 lbs of water added on Sunday will dissipate by Tuesday afternoon.

    • Richard Nikoley on May 9, 2016 at 17:58

      You are staying in the game.

      You must stay ther until you get someplace under your own level of outrage. Good for sleep.

      “I had lots of cake and many Manhattans.”

      Surely the were perfect. The bourbon element is not critical, though Maker’s goes with “perfect” pretty well. A Perfect is when the normal mixture of sweet vermouth is cut by half with dry vermouth. Some use a twist instead of the cherry. Personal choice.

      But kill the bartender if he shakes it. That’s for sweet, frothy drinks like Cosmos. A liquor man-or-decent-woman drink is stirred so it’s as silky as the time before women lost their pubic hair that males used to finger comb cause awesome. So it can serve as flashback.

      Cocktails should be taken seriously and it’s good when they take us back to times we like better.

    • cremes on May 10, 2016 at 03:15

      Yes, I’m still in the game. I have a goal and I mean to hit it.

      I’m not much of a fan of the Perfect Manhattan. I find most dry vermouths to be terrible.

      My favorite Manhattan right now (my tastes change over time) is 3 parts Bulleit Rye to 1 part Antico Carpano sweet vermouth. Finish with 3 dashes of your favorite bitters and shake. Top with a Luxardo cherry. I prefer to drink mine straight up out of a coupe.

      The best way to mix a drink is the way that you like to do it. Want to stir it? Good idea. Like to shake it? That works too.

      I take my cocktails very seriously. I’m very glad there has been a cocktail renaissance this past decade or so. It’s suddenly easy to get your hands on some of the best whiskies and gins I’ve ever had. The shelves are filled with bitters of every variety and palate. We have the option of buying a nice vermouth like Antico Carpano instead of making do with Gallo or Martini-Rossi.

      Drink up and enjoy.

    • cremes on June 1, 2016 at 07:32

      Hack #9 begins today. Starting weight 191lbs.

      I’m inching towards my goal. Hack #8 (which I neglected to record here) went well. I’m reverting back to the basics meaning that I am more often eating plain, unadulterated steamed potatoes. Frying them up all of the time makes them very tasty but I think the heat might be destroying too much resistant starch.

      I’ve bottomed out around 185lbs so I’m mostly on track. I think if I were still steadily losing 1lb/week then I should be at 184 but I haven’t quite achieved that.

      Each weekend puts back on about 5-6 pounds in water weight. However, this water gets flushed out much quicker now when I resume the potato hack.

      Still doing same exercises. Introduced more mustard to help with the cold potatoes. Lately I’ve been on a red and russet kick… they are good.

      New target is 180 by end of hack so that my maintenance weight is closer to 185. I’ll probably skip another week before posting again.

    • cremes on June 1, 2016 at 07:41

      I did want to note one more quick thing. My blood pressure has been coming down. I was typically 110/65 until I hit about 38 and then it started creeping up. It has steadied out around 145/90 which is clearly hypertensive. I am now 43.

      I have been consistently exercising throughout so I don’t view my recent improvements as exercise related. I am now starting to average around 130/80 which is a nice improvement. Some evenings before bed I am recording 110/65 again. I’m hoping that when I hit my 180 goal that my daytime average will be closer to my old BP of 110/65. We’ll see…

  10. Martin on April 1, 2016 at 12:16

    What’s you latest stats, Richard? Are you going to publish an update on your recent weight/fat loss since reimplementing the hack?

    I lost like 3kg in the week of potatos only, found it great for the appetite control, as advertised, but then it went back up.

    • Richard Nikoley on April 1, 2016 at 12:39

      Yea, pretty soon. Have been on vacation all week and will be back in the loop Monday. Pants still pretty loose. :)

    • king of the one eyed people on April 1, 2016 at 15:02

      Vacation? Vacation from what? Your whole life sounds like a great vacation already.

    • Richard Nikoley on April 1, 2016 at 15:11


  11. Michael44 on April 1, 2016 at 20:40
    • king of the one eyed people on April 2, 2016 at 04:55

      Stephen’s coffee sounds great, better than Asprey’s even. Asprey’s is still cheaper though so I will be staying with the bullet proof version unless Stephen reduces his price.

      Tim and Richard should sell a Soylent style version of mashed potatoes and beans with vitamins, egg yolks and gelatin added. Just keep the tubes in the freezer ready for microwaving. You could add flavours like Texas BBQ or red wine jus to increase the palatablity.

    • ramon on April 3, 2016 at 08:14

      Hahaha. DH Kiefer spent a few minutes on a podcast last year asking why people didn’t just use cream.

  12. Thhq on April 2, 2016 at 08:39

    I like your gung-ho attitude Richard and Tim. There are lots of ways to skin the obese cat. But what happens when the fat is gone? I have a disturbing vision of Russian prison trains headed for the Gulag where potatoes are all there are to eat.

    I think 5 pounds a day of sweet potatoes would get you a longer and healthier life. The Japanese didn’t pick this tuber as a priority food for peasants without thinking it through more than was done in 1849.

    • Thhq on April 2, 2016 at 08:44

      And sooner than later you’ll be making your potatoes into vodka to kill the monotony.

  13. Mark on April 3, 2016 at 11:54

    Hey Richard,
    You can just pay for your own damn meal rather than trying to shame me into paying for it you completely lacking common sense sniveling twit.

    LOL…shame me for having to put up with whatever the fuck it is you are ordering. Dumb ass.

    • Richard Nikoley on April 3, 2016 at 14:10

      You have nothing to worry about. I refrain from associating socially with cheapskates. If I want a course in accounting, I’ll sign up for one.

  14. king of the one eyed people on April 4, 2016 at 05:26


    I have a confession: losing weight has (nearly) ruined my life – I was not mentally prepared for the different treatment I would get from others. See as (very) fat person, no one gave a fuck about me and I didn’t give a fuck in return – kinda sweet deal, right? I can honestly say I truely felt free as a bird at the time.

    I will one day learn not to give a fuck again – soon. You’re a half decent role model in that regard. I find myself reading everything you write btw.

    Zero fucks given and zero fucks required.


  15. sdiguana on April 4, 2016 at 08:10

    Just thought I’d toss in an update on my potatoes as well:
    32M, 5’10”, Starting Weight: 195ish, Current Weight: 168 (Stable +/- 2lb)
    Abdominal caliper went from 32mm to 19mm.
    Duration: 6-8 weeks or so..? Not sure when I started.

    One of the parts I find most interesting about this whole experience is that starting a week or two ago I have incredible urges to go workout. I was a lump for the past year. Now I don’t think i could *not* workout if i wanted to. I’ve been having primal (ha) urges to go do pushups and pullups in the middle of reading a book, and I cant focus on the book until I go satisfy that need… its really cool. Walk the dogs = Opportunity for sprinting (and they love it as much as I do). Testosterone is coming back online, and I can feel it. That is about the last thing I’d have expected from a potato diet with minimal amounts of meat.

    • Richard Nikoley on April 4, 2016 at 08:20

      Just WOW.

    • T-Nat on April 4, 2016 at 13:16

      Have you been doing the potato diet nonstop for 6 – 8 weeks? or 3 days a week for 6 to 8 weeks?
      I am thinking the second because it would be pretty damn hard to eat potatoes nonstop for 6 to 8 weeks .

    • sdiguana on April 4, 2016 at 13:50

      More or less non-stop. From weeks 3+ i’d have a night per week i ate something else when out socially. My thought is that i can eat whatever i want in my house and work, but in public (socially), I will not drag others through my experiments/whims.

      rough breakdown of my eating habits:
      Week 1: boiled potatoes, mixed greens with balsamic vinegar, fermented pickles. No Alcohol
      Felt Good, potatoes got old after 4-5 days.
      Week 2: Expanded to Boiled potatoes smashed, added a diced tomato, pile of chives and a slice of bacon that had been microwaved. Second Recipe: potato soup ala richard style.
      The variety helped a lot, i think now i’d spritz some chicken broth on the mashed taters to juice em up a little more, the tomato does well though too.
      Week 3: boiled potatoes, sometimes mashed potatoes, beer and pretzels one night with a friend. Forgot potatoes one day and ate hash browns from work cafe. rotted fish sticks mixed with used motor oil to my sensitized palate… dumped that in the trash and went hungry that day. Started keeping a sack of emergency taters at work after that.
      Week 4: more soup, opened up to drinking 1-2 nights a week or 2 drinks max per night. more mixed greens this week, and pickles. Also 2-5# of strawberries a week from here forward (yay for in season)
      Week 5: gnocchi with a can of fire roasted tomatoes dumped on top. Gnocchi is really nice, the problem is that it is super palatable, so i can get 1500+ cal no prob of just gnocchi. Some boiled potatoes too
      Don’t suggest gnocchi as a mainstay for weight loss.. too palatable. Would not hesitate to add it into the diet as an occasional change of pace that is still mostly potato.
      Week 6: potato soup, ate albacore in a can for the first time ever one night with a boiled potato
      Week 7: i made way too much potato soup. probably going back to mashed with a tomato once i finish it.

      the general process: Buy one to two 5# sacks of organic yukon golds at whole paycheck (I need to find a better source of organic taters) twice a week. Dump the sack in the sink, search for nasties and slice them off. Give a quick rinse and toss all 5# into the stock pot, set timer for 30min with heat on max. Dump out the water and leave them in the pot for an hour or two, then move to an open bin and toss in the fridge (helps them dry a bit more)

      I sometimes get hungry, not the going to die kind of hunger, almost more like the going into ketosis induction hunger. I’m not really that interested in going into ketosis, so i go find food around that time.

      There are/were certainly periods that i wanted anything except a potato, and a few times i went and ate something else, but the next meal i just went back to the potato. Oddly, this is the only diet i’ve ever done where it seemed almost easier to go back onto the diet than to bother having to think about what to cook. falling off the band wagon isnt a fatal fall.

      I’m sure part of my success was motivation. I was wearing size 34 pants, and could no longer button them. To me size 36 pants means i have failed at maintaining my health and had kind of an internal “girly” crises… time to lose weight. Timely, Richard posted something about potato soup at that same time, and I have done the potato hack in the past for a week or two, never found it that hard. So needless to say, I was/am motivated to make it happen. I still need to buy new pants though since my size 34s still dont fit. Just this time its 32s that i need… I may wait another month and see if i can even push it back to 30/31s, days i’ve not seen since early college.

    • T-Nat on April 4, 2016 at 17:33

      WOW, that takes a lot of motivation to be eating mostly taters for 6+ weeks straight. Congratulations! I hope you have also been working out and packing some muscle to make these results last much longer.
      I know Tim’s advice used to be to go easy on exercise while on potato hack…I am not sure if he changed his stance on this. I have to get his book and read it when I have some free time.

      Once again, well done and keep it going.

  16. Axe on April 4, 2016 at 21:22

    I started my 5 day Potato Hack Experiment today. I’m keeping track of everything with my Fitbit which makes it pretty easy to see what is going on. I’ll post a summary here for everyone when I’m done.

    I’m posting notes and data on my blog at:

    Cheers to the lowly spud!

  17. LeonRover on April 5, 2016 at 00:53

    Making potato grate again ? : ))

    • king of the one eyed people on April 5, 2016 at 03:36

      Haha! Grate word play humor Leon. You’re a funny cunt. Good to see you back.

    • Richard Nikoley on April 5, 2016 at 07:41

      Yea, I saw a picture of a sign with the same word play.

      “No more packaged, shredded cheese. Make America Grate Again.”

  18. LeonRover on April 5, 2016 at 03:52

    Hmm, king of .. ..

    At best I’m a funny one-eyed prick – after all a cunt is a useful organ.

    : ))

  19. Jim on April 6, 2016 at 06:07

    When I go to Amazon, it shows he Kindle version only available for Kindle unlimited.
    You should have them activate the regular Kindle version purchase option.

    • Pam on April 6, 2016 at 06:37

      I was able to purchase it as a regular Kindle purchase, but I had to do it via Amazon website not app. I purchased and downloaded it this past weekend. I don’t have a Kindle…I downloaded it to the Kindle app on my iPad. Maybe something changed on Amazon’s site?

    • Jim on April 6, 2016 at 07:19

      Thanks Pam.
      I just checked again. I think it’s a glitch that’s currently on the Amazon site.

    • Jim on April 6, 2016 at 08:34

      OK. They fixed the link. I just picked up the Kindle version.

  20. Lou on April 8, 2016 at 15:59

    I stumbled on the Potato Hack book on Amazon a few days ago…and started Tue. Just bought the book before I typed this…and will start reading tonight. Before I bought, I tried it out for a few days…just to test it out.

    I’m on Day 4 of my first Potato Hack…down just under 8 lbs.

    After topping out at 340 a few years back…I lost 110 lbs over about 18 months doing what most would call a cross between Paelo and LCHF. That was cool…but at that point it seemed like I was ‘stuck’. I’ve been bouncing between 235-245 the past few months…

    All I’ve done so far is boiled white and red potatoes…cooled for a few hours and eaten at night.

    I’ve also stayed on my morning routine of coffee with coconut oil, heavy cream, grass-fed butter, and a tiny piece of 86% dark chocolate.

    Is that a mistake? I’m making sure I keep several hours of space between my last bit of coffee and my potato feast in the evening.

    Also…how much cooling of the potatoes is needed? Or should I consult the book on that? So far, I’ve been eating them completely cooled…but interested in some variety, especially if I can mix in some cooled baked potatoes.

    Like I said, I bought the book right before leaving this comment…so I haven’t dove into it just yet.

    Just wanted to leave some feedback…so far so good. And it’s not just about the 8-pound weight loss…I have felt a boost of energy and productivity during the Hack. On night 2, I had a huge rush of energy in the evening…and jammed out to some tunes like a maniac in my office. Cannot remember the last time that happened.


    • Momfryhover on April 9, 2016 at 07:17

      Sounds good… question is this for a pre diabetic?

    • cremes on April 11, 2016 at 05:08

      Lou, I hope now that you’ve had time to read the book that it answered some of your questions listed above.

      You should definitely drop the morning coffee + heavy fat while you are doing the hack. Keep the coffee but lose the rest of it. You are working at cross purposes with the hack. There have been some posts about doing the potato hack during the day and then having a little meat (4oz or less) in the evening with several hours in between. That’s a fine modification but FIRST DO IT RIGHT before you start modifying the hack. If you get too far ahead of yourself you’ll end up putting on weight because all your little cheats will push you way past your maintenance requirement.

      Let us know how you are doing.

    • Lou on April 11, 2016 at 09:13

      Had some time to dive into the book over the weekend. It answered some of my questions…although I was a little surprised that I didn’t see much info about cooling the potatoes. Before reading the book, I was under the assumption that this was a big part of the hack, with the cooling increasing the amount of resistant starch.

      I went 5 days this first time…and lost a solid 9 lbs. I gained about a pound back Sunday, just eating normal…nothing too crazy…just not only potatoes. Coffee in the morning…some peanuts as a snack…dinner was chicken thighs, broccoli, carrots, green beans,black olives, and, yeah, even a scoop of mashed potatoes. Haagen Dazs chocolate as my one treat later for dessert.

      Right back into a second “hack” this week. The plan is to go 5 days again and see if the results are similar. I don’t expect to lose as much as last week, but we’ll see.

      As for my coffee, my plan is to keep it in. Didn’t seem to have a problem last week. I just don’t see how a teaspoon of coconut oil, less than a teaspoon of butter, and about a tablespoon of heavy cream is going to have a negative effect. Especially when I’m keeping a 5 or 6 hour window between my last cup of coffee and my first meal of potatoes.

      I understand the idea of not allowing ‘little cheats’ in…at least psychologically. However, with the way I’m incorporating the ‘hack’ into my life, I’m not sure it’s going to have an effect.

      We’ll see how it goes. 9 lbs in 5 days last week with a noticeable loss in inches isn’t too bad.

      The plan this week will be the same. 30-40 minute walk in the morning on an empty stomach, coffee with coconut oil, butter, cream, and a tiny piece of 86% dark chocolate. No food for 4 to 6 hours…if not more. Then only cooled potatoes the rest of the evening. Usually split up into two “meals”.

      Energy levels seem higher and there is a noticeable difference in bowel movements. We’ll see how this 2nd 5-day hack goes this week…

  21. Rob on April 11, 2016 at 13:48

    I think there is a “golden shot” with the potato hack. The first time I did it I lost weight, about 15 lbs., but later gained that back. I’ve tried again three times since then and I haven’t lost a pound. I like ‘taters too.

    • cremes on April 12, 2016 at 05:17

      Rob, how long are you doing the hack? Are you doing boiled or baked or “fried” potatoes or are you making something a little more elaborate to eat?

      How many pounds per day are you eating approximately?

    • Rob on April 12, 2016 at 12:23

      I would do it for 4-5 days; nuked yellow potatoes, cooled. I would often mash them up and add some soup stock or a bullion cube. About 3-5 lbs. per day.

  22. Dan on June 8, 2016 at 07:27

    Richard, what’s the update on weight loss. Are you still on potatoes?

    • Richard Nikoley on June 8, 2016 at 07:56

      I don’t really do “the hack,” per se. Just eat a good amount of them. Just cooked up a pot of navy beans with a smoked ham shank, with a quart of chicken stock and water as needed, yesterday.

      Total cost? About 8 bucks. So I’m more on a Peasant and Peat deal, as a significant amount of my intake comes from orange juice and whole milk, trying to get in some liver and oysters/clams/mussels once per week.

      Three higher end meals per week. I post pics of those often on my FB and Twitter channels.

      My pants fit fine. Haven’t stepped on a scale since I did do the hack.

  23. Penny on September 14, 2016 at 19:19

    Can sweet potatoes or purple potatoes be used? Or is it only white potatoes?

    • cremes on September 15, 2016 at 06:55

      You may use any color potato (red, yellow, purple, etc). Sweet potatoes aren’t actually potatoes, so if you swap them in the potato hack doesn’t work the same. Check out for the details. In a recent post he discussed using sweet potatoes as an add-on to a long term hack to keep things interesting and less dull. However, they do not replace potatoes in the hack.

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