Have we officially missed our chance to slim down before the holidays? “It's absolutely not past too far!” insist a large number of fans of the special kick-start plan from EatLikeABear.com. One Washington state great-grandmother even tried on the extender to get rid of 17 pounds in 72 hours!

The gist of this buzzed-about mini diet: For 3 days, you repeat exactly the same pattern, feasting on natural food throughout a short daily window, then adding doses of apple cider vinegar to kill hunger between feasts. There you have it!

“When you go for a longer time without eating, your body not just fuels itself with stored fat, it triggers amazing changes which make weight loss and everything else easier,” explains 140-pounds-leaner Amanda Rose, Ph.D., who created the approach. Rose hopes anybody who tries her three-day challenge will be hooked for good. “I've discovered a very practical way to get eliminate unwanted pounds and achieve superior health – and I want to share it!”

Both Rose's three-day and long-term strategies are versions of her unique spin on time-restricted eating, a technique that cuts down on the hours we spend eating each day. The California mom, with a doctorate in social sciences, created it based on both published research and her lifetime of dieting experiences. “I was creating a last push to ascertain if weight-loss surgery was my only option,” recalls Rose, who began stuffing herself at brunch with a lot of veggies, protein, natural low-carb toppings and dressing produced from apple cider vinegar; she then sipped only water, black coffee or tea until brunch the next day. “I expected intense hunger, however it didn't happen.

Getting Lean, Bear-Style

As Rose lost 50, 75, 100 pounds, she had people suggest she was starving. “I reside in bear country, and I just started explaining that I was eating like a bear. I'd periodically load up on natural foods – greens, salmon, nuts, berries – and then 'hibernate' between meals and let my body system live off its own fat,” she shares. A Facebook post to that particular effect went viral; before she knew it, she was helping countless folks get results like hers. “I developed the three-day idea for anyone who felt curious but hesitant,” she says.

“You can do anything for 3 days – and it's also of sufficient length to see if you're one of the numerous people who find this way of eating suits them perfectly!” Nutrition experts aren't surprised by all the “bear successes.” Here's why: After Ten to twelve hours without consuming calories, we exhaust blood sugar levels. At that point, “the body begins burning stored fat as its primary fuel,” per Johns Hopkins intermittent fasting authority Mark Mattson, Ph.D. If you don't eat for, say, 20 hours, as much as 10 of them are pure fat burn!

There's more: Giving our bodies breaks from food allows our insides to heal – something we quite often actually need as we grow older. “It leads to better blood-sugar control, better hormone regulation, reduced inflammation and more,” notes Amy Shah, M.D., a wellness expert with training from Harvard. Each one is factors that can drive short-term results, longterm success and soaring health.

The Vinegar Difference

“I've always used apple cider vinegar within my salad dressing because I enjoy it,” shares Rose. “Later, I read it helps with weight reduction. I did a go diluted in water and was surprised at how noticeable the decrease in appetite was.” Research shows potent acid in the vinegar 'turns off' hunger and blocks blood sugar levels spikes. Sip it before meals, and also you make less insulin, a hormone that triggers cravings and slows fat burn. Rose says it's especially ideal for those using her three-day challenge.

The 3-Day Challenge

To do this three-day challenge, decide on an eating window (one to 8 hours long) during which you'll relish unlimited veggies, 8 oz. of protein, and some areas of natural low-carb extras (nuts, berries, avocado, cheese, oil). Sip apple cider vinegar treatment inside a pre-meal drink. We're sharing sample meals; the official challenge (with shopping lists and recipes) is free at EatLikeABear.com. Always obtain a doctor's okay to test any plan.

Big Baked Omelet: Cook 4 -5 beaten eggs with sautéed veggies in oven-safe skillet until almost set; season and bake 6 minutes at 400oF.

Anti-Hunger Cocktail: Mix 1 -2 Tbs. apple cider vinegar (such as Braggs or any brand with “the mother”) in 4 oz. water with spices to taste.