Laura Prepon did a lot of fad diets, like the HCG diet, before her current fad diet

Laura Prepon has co-authored a new diet book, The Stash Plan, which seems somewhat sensible as far as celebrity diets go but is still full of pseudoscientific nonsense. The book description on Amazon claims that the author, Elizabeth Troy, “unstuck Prepon’s malfunctioning organs and metabolism through targeted eating and stretching” and describes the diet as combining “Eastern holistic medicine and food science.” It’s a 21 day plan with two weekly cooking sessions combining “proteins, carbs, and vegetables—and nutritional bone broths.” Commenters on Amazon note that all the food you’re supposed to buy is organic and that you’re not allowed to use the microwave to heat anything up.

Prepon is a Scientologist, I’m just throwing that out there, and like fellow Scientologist Kirstie Alley she’s tried a lot of other different diets, with various results. (Although it’s not like she’s yo-yoed like Alley, no one seems to have achieved that level of yo-yoing, not even Oprah.) Radar online has details from her book including some of the other diets she’s tried and I could definitely relate to some of them.

After gaining weight and lacking energy while filming That ’70s Show in her 20′s, Prepon began her descent into dangerous dieting. “I’ve done just about every diet there is, from Atkins and South Beach to cabbage soup cleanses,” she writes. “Caveman diet? Been there, done that. Alkaline diet? Bulletproof coffee? Vegas? Atkins? Yup! I’ve done it all.”

On another diet, she could only eat six crackers her day in addition to tiny portions of weighed food. The 36-year-old ate her “dinner” in the bathroom of the Beverly Hilton during a black-tie event.

Going to extreme: Prepon received HCG hormone injections in order to burn body fat. “It’s just as crazy as it sounds, but I was willing to try anything,” she recalls. “When I stopped it, not only did I gain all the weight back, but my hormones were completely out of whack.”

Before shooting her first scene on Orange Is The New Black— a shower scene— Prepon says she starved herself for 40 hours: “My poor body was so confused it didn’t know what I was going to do to it next.”

Black magic: Practicing Scientologist Prepon also sought help from a “shaman-type” nutritionist who “shook maracas” and “cast some kind of spell” over her. But it didn’t help her lose weight.

Prepon admits she worked out “like a maniac.” “I used to do triple workout sessions in one day; first, a kickboxing class, then a run, and then I’d lift weights at night,” she writes.

The fitness extremes left her exhausted. “My body was so numb that it was literally giving up on me,” she confesses. “Every day became a struggle.”

In July 2012, Prepon found solace through New York nutritionist and healer Elizabeth Troy, who taught her to take care of two important organs in digestion: the gallbladder and liver. Now, she cooks twice a week and eats “healthy, simple meals” throughout the day. “The Stash Plan is going to do for you what it did for me,” she promises in the book.

[From Radar Online]

If she felt numb and tired it sounds like she was nutrient deficient and needed to track her macros and take a multivitamin. She may have been low on iron too, which would explain why this meat-heavy diet made her feel better.

My cousin’s wife did the HCG diet. She explained to me that you get the hormone shots so your body thinks it’s pregnant and you don’t feel hungry while eating 600 calories a day. (Just FYI, starvation mode as applied to dieting is a myth. Hunger is another thing.) The theory is that the hormone triggers your body to use fat reserves for fuel, but there are no studies showing that the HCG diet is more effective than calorie restriction alone and of course you lose weight when you’re eating less than half of what you need. I actually almost paid for this diet, but then I discovered MyFitnessPal.

If this diet works for Prepon, good for her, I just see so many people trying all these different diets which are radically different from what they normally eat. One lady on the Amazon reviews for this book said she had to go to three different stores to get the ingredients. Some reviewers are complaining that the food is hard to prepare and there’s too much meat. Compared to all those other diets she tried this one seems like “the one” to Prepon though. What about eating mostly good food and having treats and junk in moderation? I guess you can’t really package and sell that as some kind of cure all.

Sidenote: I like Prepon’s style! I’m going to steal this look and wear a jacket with jeans and boots today.

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60 Responses to “Laura Prepon did a lot of fad diets, like the HCG diet, before her current fad diet”

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  1. NotSoSocialButterfly says:

    Wait, so a practicing CO$-er cannot take antidepressants to save his or her life, but can shoot exogenous hormones to SHED FAT??????????????????????????????

    • Anne tommy says:

      Seems so. Makes as much sense as anything else does in that bizarre cult, i.e. very little. And she was so pretty in That 70s Show but the harsh eye make up and hair colour are not flattering.

      • Bobo says:

        I agree… I have black hair, pale skin & eyes and I love a heavy eye… as I am getting older, it just looks harsh. I am trying to ‘lighten’ up.

    • MC2 says:

      Or have their autistic son take meds…….

  2. paolanqar says:

    I used to like her then i found out she is a scientologist.

    • minx says:

      Me too.

    • doofus says:


    • Jh says:

      Yes, a hardcore one at that.

    • Bridget says:

      Reading between the lines of what she’s saying here, she sounds like she has a lot of issues and I can see how that made her vulnerable to CO$, especially when exposed through a longtime boyfriend. The starvation, the crazy exercising, all of that points to someone with issues with food and control, and it sounds like she’d benefit way more from a trip to a counselor than yet another crazy diet. And yet she’s a $ci, so while she can do any ridiculous method to lose weight, she can’t actually see a mental health professional.

      • Wiffie says:

        She seems to be either ignorant or in complete denial that she obviously is eating disordered. It’s veiled as “I tried everything!” Looking for control in specific guidelines of a diet instead of general logic, extreme measures. Excessive exercise. Almost like she has some kind of body dysmorphia to where she thinks she is SO far from ideal and can’t get further because her body won’t let her. It won’t let her because she’s a perfectly healthy size.

    • Anguishedcorn says:

      This makes me so sad, for some reason. I liked her.

    • stella alpina says:

      Yup. Hard to like celebs (or civilians) who are die-hard Scientologists because it means they, like Laura, have allowed others to do the thinking for them.

      Bridget and Wiffie are spot on. Laura is in a vulnerable place mentally and emotionally, which makes her more susceptible to brainwashing by a cult or following any fad diet shilled by a so-called “expert”.

      How long before she decides The Stash Plan doesn’t work and she jumps on the next diet trend? She admits she was willing to try anything.

  3. Pandy says:

    Not a meat eater so will never buy her book … but she looks happy and healthy. Getting people to cook their own food is a good start at least.

  4. Emma says:

    Isn’t it hCG? As in human choriogonadotropin, the “pregnancy hormone”? Just so we can Google the correct idiotic diet scan, I mean.

    • Size Does Matter says:

      Yes, that’s it. Anybody out there who wasn’t hungry while actually pregnant and naturally producing this hormone, raise your hands? As for me, I was ravenous. Still am while breastfeeding.

      • paleokifaru says:

        I dropped 10 lbs in my first trimester because I always felt queasy. So even when I would have to eat because I got that ravenous feeling, it couldn’t be much. That said I think it’s a terrible idea to take it to lose weight and it’s even nuttier for men to do so because their bodies were NEVER intended to process that hormone.

      • fruitloops says:

        I was wondering the same thing,as I am currently pregnant and don’t remember not being hungry ever during these 7 months. I had less appetite in the first 5 months or so,but just because I didn’t like certain foods,I was normally hungry and certainly didn’t eat 600 calories a day. And I can’t recall any pregnant woman who ate less than normal (people with morning sickness excluded) so I’d really like to see some real science behind this hormone theory.

      • KiddVicious says:

        HCG isn’t an appetite suppressant, it releases stored fat so your baby won’t starve if you can’t eat. That’s why women in third world countries without the ability of 3 meals a day, 2000 calories, still have babies. And also why babies continue to grow if the mother has severe morning sickness and can’t keep food down. It’s also why pregnant women gain weight so quickly, it’s still releasing stored fat even if it doesn’t need to.

        Men who take steroids will take HCG to get their bodies to start producing testosterone again. There was a pro baseball player with it caught in his system, that’s how they caught his steroid use. I can’t remember his name but I want to say he played for the Dodgers.

        The science is there for HCG weight loss, you just have to know what you’re doing.

      • Size Does Matter says:

        Thank you, @KV. I guess I get it now. But if pregnancy makes you hungry it seems it would be impossible to do this diet.

      • KiddVicious says:

        The lower the calories you eat, the more fat released, or at least that’s the theory. Eating 500 calories is prompting the body to release a lot of stored fat, maybe up to 5000 calories a day, that could be why people aren’t hungry. You do get hungry when it’s time to eat, but feel full quickly.

      • NotSoSocialButterfly says:

        Can a peri- or post- menopausal woman use it? How might it affect someone for whom other female hormones are medically contraindicated? Curious, thanks.

      • KiddVicious says:


        Yes. My mom and aunt did it. They’re in their 70′s, my mom had a few hot flashes her first week, my aunt who had continued to have hot flashes into her 70′s said hers completely stopped, hasn’t had one since and it’s been a few years. It supposedly resets your hypothalamus which controls almost all aspects of your body, from hormones to body temp. I’m not a doctor nor scientist, I just did a lot of research and have seen how the diet works on a lot people I know, all different ages.

      • isabelle says:

        @NotSoSocialButterfly some cancers/tumors actually secrete HCG. If you develop cancer and it secreted HCG, think it would be very dangerous to use it as weight loss supplement. As a nurse would worry this would help cancers spread rapidly because this hormone protects fetuses during pregnancy. If you had a tumor, especially in the reproductive areas it would protect the tumor possibly. Think this is a very dangerous hormone to use for something as silly as weight loss.

      • fruitloops says:

        Thank you KiddVicious for a good explanation!

      • Alarmjaguar says:

        that was my thought! Give me all the food, especially the pasta was my mantra

  5. Lex says:

    I have her body type (tall and big boned) and have to come to terms that I’ll never be a size 2. Her body looks amazing, I wish I had enough self discipline for that.

    • Ariel says:

      The way she talks about her diet and exercise cycles it reads less like “self discipline” and more like “crazy”. She looks amazing, let’s all be thankful we’re not that crazy.
      Sigh. CO$ preys on them.

    • MC2 says:

      I agree with Ariel. This sounds like absolute insanity & very painful. Injections, eating in the bathroom, exhausted, starving for days- I’d rather be “curvy”.

  6. Kellyrae says:

    Before my wedding I did the hcg diet. It worked amazingly well. I’ve never felt better in my whole life. I wouldn’t do it again though, the injection part is too much.

  7. nicole says:

    It seems like people just try a lot of stuff until they find that lifestyle/diet/whatever that clicks for them and doesn’t seem like work. I was a frustrated dieter, wanting the 10lb weight loss and I started using MyFitnessPal and never looked back. It has been a drastic change in outlook and thinking that came about so easily and takes no effort. But it seems like so many people have to go through that searching to figure out what works, no one size solution.

  8. Suzanne says:

    Loved her red hair- I miss it!

  9. senna says:

    Starvation mode is a myth, but metabolic slowdown as a result of weight loss is a documented phenomenon. For women especially, weight loss as a number that registers on the scale is driven by hormone cycles. During ovulation it’s really common to retain water, and during menstruation water can also be retained. Sometimes before fat is shed, the fat cells temporarily are filled with water. When it’s shed, it seems like you lost a large amount of weight overnight when you’re finally seeing the weight loss debt you are owed.

    I’m really skeptical of any weight loss plan that is packaged as a 21-day fix. That’s not even long enough to get through one menstrual cycle. How does doing anything for 21 days prepare you for a lifetime of sustainable healthy habits? Sure, you can avoid less healthy foods for 21 days, and you might see a slight drop on the scale thanks to a caloric deficit, but what happens when you go back to your regular habits after the quick fix?

    • MC2 says:

      My weight fluctuates quit a bit. I’ve always wondered about the stars that use specific numbers for their weight and scratched my head. Like the “I weigh 117 pounds” rather then saying 115 or 120. What day?! I even heard a star (Leann I think) use a half pound for their weight and I thought that a burger or a period could change that number.

  10. Alexis says:

    If it works for her, great. She looks healthy and happy in those photos. Different plans work for different people. What people need to realize is that you need to find the healthy living plan that works best for you, there isn’t a uniform silver bullet.

    It must be so difficult for Prepon in Hollywood. She has a naturally tall and athletic body type, and so is hardly the petite waif that seems to be the Hollywood standard. (All these weight loss plans! I’ve never for a moment thought she looked heavy or out of shape, and between 70′s and OITNB, I’ve seen her over a long period of time.) She does great work but she must constantly be told she’s “too big.” Like, she probably gets that literally daily. I couldn’t do it.

  11. Bridget says:

    These sound like some serious issues with food and exercise – Laura can try all the diets she wants, starve herself, inject herself, exercise like a maniac, but until she works on her relationship with food and her body, she’s going to hit this wall time and time again. Too bad she’s a Scientologist, because it sounds like she needs to speak with a counselor way more than a nutritionist.

    • Size Does Matter says:

      I know that wall. Trying to focus now on what my body can do as opposed to how it looks. I’m not being very successful.

    • LAK says:

      Bridget: I am horrified at what she’s been doing to her body. I’m shocked her health isn’t affected or worse.

      Being a CO$, she wouldn’t have had access to proper nutritional/human biology education even at basic level. Which is why she’s taking her friend/chef/nutritionist (?)’s quackery advise about stretching her organs when all she’s done is shown her how to cook and eat properly as opposed to the previous insane situation.

      • Bridget says:

        @LAK she might have some basic education as she wasn’t born into the church (the Masterson family are the ones who brought her in). But yes,this stuff is ridiculous.

  12. Coco says:

    I ordered her book after trying a couple of the recipes online. It was a turmeric ground turkey, side of roasted sweet potatoes and then I added roasted broccoli and quinoa. It was delicious! I like the idea of the “stash” part of this diet of meal prepping healthy food twice a week. I’m also pregnant and only simple foods are appealing to me right now. The meal from her book was the first dinner that actually tasted good to me in weeks, and was super quick to make. I’m not doing the bone broth, it stinks up my house too much and the smell will probably make me gag in my condition. I’m over fad diets but am always on the lookout for healthy, whole food, easy recipes. So I’m excited to check out the rest of book when it comes in tomorrow. I like her too…just wish she wasn’t a scientologist! At first I was a little worried this was a CO$ pushed book!

    • Wren says:

      I make bone broth with lots of veggies and it makes my house smells amazing. I use a chicken carcass, beef bones, or whatever I have leftover from other meals. I hoard bones in my freezer for broth. Then they get boiled for 24-48 hours (depending on how lazy I am) with onions, carrots, celery and zucchini. The zucchini really makes it good, adds a nice sweetness and depth of flavor. Then I strain it and put it in mason jars in the fridge. I use it for pretty much everything, soup, rice, hot pot, whatever calls for broth or stock.

      • Coco says:

        Yeah, I make it with veggies too and while it smells good at first, I hate how it permeates my entire house by hour 24 and I can smell it in my clothes. To each their own! Thinking about getting a pressure cooker and going that route.

  13. Lambda says:

    I cringe and squirm when I read about these diets. Maybe I’m an alarmist, but some of them seem dangerous. I think it’s better to carry extra poundage than to fiddle with your hormones, especially because that ‘solution’ doesn’t imply any behavior modification. You lose weight but don’t lean to eat better.

    • tmc says:

      I so agree! I cant imagine the injecting with hormones for this reason… and later effects seem really problematic. I dont know how heavy she got but it sounds a bit obsessive, although being in that industry, I can imagine how it would be if the * typical routes * did not work.

  14. outhousecat says:

    wtf has she done to her face? She was gorgeous back on the That 70′s Show when she was Hot Donna. Now she looks terrible. That hair color is way too dark for her. Her body looks great but she’s ruined her face. Sad.

  15. Wentworth Miller says:

    I like her as Alex Vaus on Orange Is the New Black.

  16. peanut says:

    Make-up GOALS.

    everything else, no comment

  17. Lisa says:

    From what I know , her current plan doesn’t sound faddish at all. Sounds like a pretty normal way to eat. I mean, I don’t know about the food itself “unsticking” stuck organs, but stretching and manual manipulation through an osteopath or physiatrist can improve your posture so you’re not hunched over and compressing your organs.

  18. Aziraphale says:

    Skimmed the article, came by the say that in pregnancy number #2, the idea that my body thinking I’m pregnant equating to less hunger seems a little whacky. I’m well into second breakfast and have only been awake for an hour. THAT’S pregnant eating for my body. LOL

  19. CoKatie says:

    Her dieting sounds a lot like mine, and I would be pretty confident that like me, the underlying issue is a mental negative body image rather than a physical issue. As has been mentioned, she’s never going to get to the bottom of that due to her, ahem, religious beliefs. That’s a shame.

    I have found only two reliable ways of successfully losing weight during my life long love affair with food and the aforementioned negative body image issues: (1) As someone mentioned up thread, a Fit Bit and a food journal – both faithfully monitored – will highlight your problem areas/time of day and keep you honest. (2) An endocrinologist I found in NYC years ago who specializes in weight loss, monitors your blood biweekly, has you on a specific diet (which, to me, was surprisingly livable with) and – medication.

    The starvation doesn’t work. I think we can ALL attest to that. I wish her good luck, but getting a few sessions with a therapist to deal with the underlying issue would do her the world of good and spare her body organs potential longterm issues. To each their own.

  20. Udon says:

    Being obsessed with fad diets comes from that sense that you just don’t have control over your body and maybe sometimes a little body hate. I think to be healthy we should focus on INCLUDING stuff rather than CUTTING out and never obsess over food. Simple rules: Follow a mostly vege diet with lots of fruit and vege and try to eat organic. Snack on superfoods or use some in your meals. Learn to cook and prep meals and experiment with salads and other healthy veg meals. Drink lots of filtered water. The end.

  21. Eden75 says:

    I did hcg almost 10 years ago. I had been dealing with issues for a decade that no one understood. Turns out to find out what was going on, I had to lose the weight I carry around my waist and hips. I produce pretty much no progesterone and an extremely abnormally high level of estrogen and extra weight where I carry it can mess with my hormones. This is balanced out now by a progesterone IUD. After countless brain scans, blood tests, CT Scans, trust me, 21 days of shots is no big deal. My weight still fluctuates around my period but otherwise I stay within 2 or 3 pounds of where I ended up after the 21 days cycle. I lost 32 pounds and was happy to see it go for a lot of reasons. Sometimes the side effects of something are not as bad as the problem they are fixing. Also, eating properly and exercising were not doing anything, The messed up hormones made it impossible for the weight to come off.

    That all said, I wouldn’t recommend it for anyone actually. It required my doctors, specialists, a dietitian and my dentist to get me through those 3 weeks. There are definitely better ways to do it. It’s hard on your gums and on your mental health.

  22. Greenieweenie says:

    She sounds like she has a completely bonkers relationship with food, so why would anyone take advice from her? Millions of people around the world just eat small portions of whatever they want and do just fine. Also–she looks like she’s done some hard living to me. Maybe it’s the eyebrows.

  23. Me Three says:

    Sounds like a modified version of the GAP diet to me.