My New Food Experiment: The 80/10/10 Fruitarian Diet


Last week in the NMA newsletter, I promised to start publishing more frequent podcast episodes — and for the first time ever (I think), here’s our second episode within a week!

We’re shooting for 1-2 episodes per week now, and I may decide not to post all of them to the blog like this. So if you want to make sure you’re notified whenever there’s a new episode of NMA Radio, subscribe in iTunes. (And if you’d like to leave a nice review while you’re there, I’d really appreciate it.)

In this new episode, we talk a lot about fruit.

First, the Woodstock Fruit Festival, where last month my family spent a week camping and eating nothing but raw fruit and vegetables, and having a blast doing all the typical summer camp stuff surrounded by such amazing food. It’s put on each year by elite ultrarunner and fruitarian Michael Arnstein, and being able to hang out with him in person left me really inspired.

So much so that we took the diet home with us. Not quite 100 percent, but close — we’re eating fruitarian (also called 80/10/10, as in 80 percent carbs, 10 percent protein, 10 percent fat) until dinnertime each day, then a cooked meal for dinner most nights. (Our kids are still eating their normal diets all day, with just a little more fruit.)

We’re treating it as an experiment, and we’re not quite sure which way we’ll go: toward eating this way all day long (even dinner), or gradually back to our more typical (cooked) plant-based diet with slightly more focus on raw than before.

Whichever way it ends up, we’re having a lot of fun right now. Once we got over the “it’s weird to eat 3 mangoes for lunch, or make a smoothie out of 7 bananas and some water” thing, my wife and I started really looking forward to these simple “mono meals” (eating just one food until you’re full). And after three weeks of eating this way, we really feel great.

It’s way too early to say whether this diet works for us or not, but you’ll get a sense for my excitement in this new episode of the podcast.

Here’s what we talk about in this episode:

  • The Woodstock Fruit Festival
  • Transitioning from cooked to raw fruitarian
  • Typical meals on the 80/10/10 diet
  • “Mono” meals — why eating just one food at a time might make sense
  • Why you often feel great a few weeks after changing your diet (no matter which type of diet)
  • Concerns about eating this way
  • Fruitarian before 4: the struggles and the rewards

Click the button below to listen now:


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  1. Will there be a written round-up of these topics on the blog, too? This episode sounds really interesting, but I just don’t like listening to podcasts at all…

  2. I just started researching the 80/10/10 – super interested to listen to this podcast and follow your experiment!

  3. I am interested in your triglyceride levels before and after.

    Mine have gone up since I started eating more fruit several years ago. They’re still not very high, but they are higher than they were previously.

    Beware, the fruitarians who refuse to admit that there is any downside to their diet, will blame this on something else, like eating nuts with ones fruit.

    • Eliot W. Collins says:

      I’m still interested in learning if there was any change in your triglyceride levels now that you’re eating more fruit.

  4. Really liked this! Glad I took the time to listen – lookin forward hearing more about the fruitarian progress and how you feel on it! 😀

  5. I’m eager to learn more about the festival you attended in Woodstock. I was just there for the first time this weekend, exploring and appreciating all that Woodstock has to offer! I would also love to see a written description of your fruitarian experience and see sample meals posted on the blog (rather than the podcast).

  6. I’ve been trying this out ever since I listened to your podcast! I hope you will keep updating on how your expedient is going!? I’m finding there is not as much online support for me as I had hoped. For example although I have read the book I’m still struggling a bit to get enough protein while eating this diet. (my 10%). Any tips? Thanks for trying out this diet it gave me a level of comfort to try it too. I wish there was more research being conducted on the long term effects of 80-10-10. there is lots of scary stuff out there and no peer reviewed research that shows the facts either way. I do del great after 4 days!

  7. Marianne Morrill says:

    Just listened to the podcast. Very interesting. Like you, I have come to being vegan over time. I am interested in seeing how it goes for you over the next few weeks. I might just give it a go myself. Thanks for all of the great information!

  8. Really looking forward to hearing more about your adventures in fruitarianism!

  9. I am wondering if there is an advantage to the multi-banana smoothie rather than eating say 4-5 bananas for breakfast. I can not use the vitamix in the morning because it is too loud – even in the garage I would still wake the kids. And I suspect that making it the night before would result in a very brown yucky smoothie.

    • Eliot W. Collins says:

      I make banana puree all the time. I add cinnamon, ginger and unsweetened cocoa. It keeps well in the refrigerator or freezer. It is very brown, but it’s yummy, not yucky.

  10. Thanks, Eliot. I will try making it the night before and see if it still is yummy as you say. I appreciate the input.

    • Eliot W. Collins says:

      Debra – Brown bananas are sweeter. Yummy is relative. Let me know how it goes. I often pour banana puree over dry cereal. I don’t drink it after it’s refrigerated; it’s too thick.

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