YONKERS, NY — The Volumetrics Eating Plan was the top-rated clinically tested diet plan, and “The Best Life Diet” was the top-rated diet book, according to Consumer Reports.

The magazine rated eight popular diet plans based on the diet's adherence to the 2005 U.S. Dietary Guidelines for Americans and the results of published randomized clinical studies that reported short-term (three to six months) and long-term (12 months) results of at least 40 subjects per diet.

The top-rated Volumetrics diet employs a strategy of consuming low-density foods and encourages dieters to first take the edge off of hunger by consuming a low calorie soup or salad.

Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, and Slim-Fast also rated highly. Weight Watchers scored average on weight loss but first in long-term adherence. Jenny Craig revealed high dropout rates, though those who stuck with the plan lost considerable weight. Slim-Fast's clinical studies showed above-average long-term weight loss but a high long-term dropout rate.

The magazine also rated seven diet books. Based on an expert-panel questionnaire and Consumer Reports' own analysis of nutritional quality, “The Best Life Diet” was the top-rated, followed by three closely ranked books, “Eat, Drink & Weigh Less,” “You On a Diet” and “The Abs Diet.” All the books offered fairly healthful menus, but when the panelists evaluated the nutrition advice, they found noticeable differences in the restrictiveness of various books, the magazine reported. The books also had variations in the quality of the exercise information, and the explanations of the science and nutrition behind the plans.

The complete report is featured in Consumer Reports' June issue.