CHICAGO (CBS) — Sticking to a diet is easier said than done. But what if you could diet just one day and then eat whatever you want the next–even higher fat foods?

CBS’s Mary Kay Kleist explains why that might just work.

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“I’ve always been on a diet,” said Ashleigh Le. “If it’s not one then the other.”

There are multiple diet plans out there, and people have tried them all–Master Cleanser, Isogenics, Atkins and more.

But what if there was a plan under which you diet only every other day?

Peter Bormes laughed and said, “Sure I’ll try it. I’ll try anything.”

Jose Garcia tried it and lost 20 pounds on the “every other day” diet.

He was part of the first round of a study at the University of Illinois-Chicago.

“I don’t think I’ve ever dropped this much amount of weight trying,” Garcia said.

Here’s the plan.

There’s a ‘fast’ day and a ‘feed’ day. On the ‘fast’ day you only eat a large lunch, about 500 to 700 calories. Then for the ‘feed’ day, you can eat pretty much anything.

But on the days with only lunch, Jose says it was difficult to be around others.

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“At work was the hardest for me, everybody’s got lunch,” he said. “You’re looking at them and you’re like oh man, I want some more.”

UIC researcher Krista Varady, Ph.D. has studied this before, using only low-fat foods.

People lost 10 to 30 pounds.

But this time researchers split the people into two groups, one eating a high-fat diet, the other eating a low-fat diet. The results were pretty surprising.

“We’re actually finding that the ones on the high-fat diet group are for some reason losing a bit more weight than the ones in the low-fat diet group,” she said.

Jose was in the high-fat diet group. So on the lunch only day, Jose would have a small frozen dinner, fruit or vegetable and a snack, such as nuts.

“But it wasn’t much, it was really little,” he said.

Jose says the first week was the hardest. But as pounds melted off, the compliments on his appearance poured in. His face is slimmer and his body mass index dropped from 34 to 28.

But more importantly, his attitude toward food changed.

“It helped me with portion control,” he said. “It showed me I don’t need to keep eating to be satisfied. I would eat to eat and now I just eat and I know where to stop.”

Although people on the high-fat diet are losing more weight, researchers have yet to determine how that diet will impact their cholesterol and blood pressure levels.

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In a couple of months, a larger and longer study will start. This one plans to follow people to see if they can keep the weight off for six months after they officially stop dieting.