ABC News' Juju Chang and Taylor Behrendt report:
Low-carb diets have been popular for years, but a new low-carb diet caters specifically to carb lovers by allowing them to eat cake and cookies and other carb favorites as long as they restrict the sugar.
Jorge Cruise, who wrote the new diet book "The 100," which outlines how to restrict sugar, claims hundreds of people who've tried his diet lost an average of 18 pounds in two weeks.
Cruise met with ABC News' Juju Chang at the Trump SoHo in Manhattan to explain the science behind the approach.
"It's all about the insulin," he said. "Everyone thinks weight loss is all about eat less, exercise more … a calorie is a calorie and as much as I love equality, I'm not abiding equality when it comes to calories. Not all calories are the same."
So on Cruise's regimen, dieters can't eat more than 100 sugar calories a day.
"There are new ways to have your cake and eat it too, literally …" he said.
But it's not that simple. Common foods that may seem healthy are loaded with hidden sugar, and reading nutrition labels can be tricky.
"So here's the total formula, bottom line: total carbs times four," he said. "Total carbs times four will tell you how many sugar calories. … Say it's 20 total carbs in an apple. Times it by four, you're looking at 80 sugar calories."
For example, Cruise said, one serving of brown rice - about one-fourth of a cup - has 35 grams of carbs. Multiply that by four, and you're already over your daily limit of sugar calories.
Some surprising foods - such as whipped cream, half and half and red wine, which has only 14 sugar calories per glass - don't pose a problem on this diet.
For people who love carbs, Cruise says they can swap out high-carb wheat flour for almond flour.
"The 100?Diet Recipes
¼ cup ground flax
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 teaspoon cinnamon powder
1 teaspoon coconut oil
1 packet Stevia/Truvia
Optional: 2 tbsp. walnuts added to the mixture
Mix all ingredients in a coffee mug. Microwave for 50 seconds. Serve with butter. Complete the breakfast with coffee with some half and half. Contains no sugar calories.
2 chicken breasts
2 cups coconut flour
Preheat the coconut oil in a skillet. Slice the chicken breasts in half. In a bowl, beat the egg, then dip the chicken in egg, then in coconut flour. Fry until golden brown on each side.
Fried chicken serves four, and has no sugar calories.
Chocolate Lace Cookies
2 stick butter, softened
2/3 cup Truvia baking blend
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 cup almond flour
¼ cup unsweetened whey protein powder
¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
4 ounces dark chocolate (chopped)
1 cup chopped walnuts
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Mix all ingredients, then spoon heaping teaspoons 2 inches apart on the baking sheet. Bake for 9 to 10 minutes.
Makes as many as 24 cookies, depending on how large the portions are on the cookie sheet. Contains no sugar calories.
- Skinny Muffin recipe from "The 100? by Jorge Cruise. Reprinted with permission by William Morrow, an imprint of HarperCollins. Other recipes Courtesy of Jorge Cruise, JorgeCruise.com.
- Food & Cooking