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How the Cooking Light Diet Inspired One Woman to Grow in New Ways

Aussie-born Gai Doran rarely ate out growing up. Processed food was hard to come by, and her meals were filled with ingredients she could count on. Her family almost unintentionally had a clean-eating lifestyle, so that’s a philosophy she has always been comfortable with—one she recognized in the Cooking Light Diet.

When she stumbled upon the Cooking Light Diet, she jumped at the chance to cook meals that were good for her family and on the table quickly. As Gai put it, “I loved that it has limited ingredients and the kind of stuff that you may have in your refrigerator or at your local grocery store, without having to go to a specialty store. And they’re quick, so at the end of the day I can find something that I can make in 30 minutes.”

Along with working in a university's research department, Gai is an avid hiker.

For someone who loves to cook, the Diet was her dream meal planner. What she didn’t expect was a new fascination with gardening. After asking Gai what her favorite part of the Cooking Light Diet is, I got a peek into her New Haven, Connecticut, garden.

A beautiful garden nestled in Gai's backyard

M: So what is your favorite part about the diet? G: A lot of the recipes take advantage of what’s in season, or I can make those choices myself. Also, actually this is the funny part of it—so many of the recipes use fresh herbs it has inspired me to start my own garden! I’m having a lot of fun watching these tomato plants growing, but I’m also growing thyme and oregano and basil and parsley and cilantro. I’ve never had a garden before. I’ve never grown vegetables before. So this is very cool.

We think it’s pretty cool too, Gai.


If you’d like to know more about the Cooking Light Diet, visit, or email us at We’d love to hear from you! Have a great week.

*Members following the Cooking Light Diet, on average, lose more than half a pound per week.