from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The usual food and drink of a person or animal.
  • n. A regulated selection of foods, as for medical reasons or cosmetic weight loss.
  • n. Something used, enjoyed, or provided regularly: subsisted on a diet of detective novels during his vacation.
  • adj. Of or relating to a food regimen designed to promote weight loss in a person or an animal: the diet industry.
  • adj. Having fewer calories.
  • adj. Sweetened with a noncaloric sugar substitute.
  • adj. Designed to reduce or suppress the appetite: diet pills; diet drugs.
  • intransitive v. To eat and drink according to a regulated system, especially so as to lose weight or control a medical condition.
  • transitive v. To regulate or prescribe food and drink for.
  • n. A national or local legislative assembly in certain countries, such as Japan.
  • n. A formal general assembly of the princes or estates of the Holy Roman Empire.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The food and beverage a person or animal consumes.
  • n. A controlled regimen of food and drink, as to gain or lose weight or otherwise influence health.
  • n. By extension, any habitual intake or consumption.
  • n. A council or assembly of leaders; a formal deliberative assembly.
  • v. To regulate the food of (someone); to put on a diet.
  • v. To modify one's food and beverage intake so as to decrease or increase body weight or influence health.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Course of living or nourishment; what is eaten and drunk habitually; food; victuals; fare.
  • n. A course of food selected with reference to a particular state of health; prescribed allowance of food; regimen prescribed.
  • n. Occasionally, the Reichstag of the German Empire, Reichsrath of the Austrian Empire, the federal legislature of Switzerland, etc.
  • n. The legislature of Denmark, Sweden, Japan, or Hungary.
  • n. The state assembly or any of various local assemblies in the states of the German Empire, as the legislature (Landtag) of the kingdom of Prussia, and the Diet of the Circle (Kreistag) in its local government.
  • n. The local legislature (Landtag) of an Austrian province.
  • n. The federative assembly of the old Germanic Confederation (1815 -- 66).
  • n. In the old German or Holy Roman Empire, the great formal assembly of counselors (the Imperial Diet or Reichstag) or a small, local, or informal assembly of a similar kind (the Court Diet, or Hoftag).
  • intransitive v. To eat; to take one's meals.
  • intransitive v. To eat according to prescribed rules; to ear sparingly.
  • transitive v. To cause to take food; to feed.
  • transitive v. To cause to eat and drink sparingly, or by prescribed rules; to regulate medicinally the food of.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To provide diet or food for; feed; nourish.
  • To prescribe food for; regulate the food or regimen of.
  • To eat; feed.
  • To eat according to rules prescribed: as, to diet in an attack of dyspepsia.
  • n. Food and drink; specifically, food considered in relation to its quality and effects: as, milk is a wholesome article of diet.
  • n. A course of food regulated by a physician or by medical rules; food prescribed for the prevention or cure of disease, and limited in kind and quantity; dietetic regimen; dietary.
  • n. Allowance of provision; supply of food.
  • n. Allowance for expenses of living.
  • n. Synonyms Subsistence, fare, provision.
  • n. Regimen.
  • n. A meeting, as of dignitaries or delegates, held from day to day for legislative, political, ecclesiastical, or municipal purposes; meeting; session: specifically applied by English and French writers to the legislative assemblies in the German empire, Austria, etc.
  • n. The discharge of some part of ministerial duty at a fixed time: as, a diet of examination; a diet of visitation.
  • n. An excursion; a journey.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. follow a regimen or a diet, as for health reasons
  • n. a prescribed selection of foods
  • n. the usual food and drink consumed by an organism (person or animal)
  • v. eat sparingly, for health reasons or to lose weight
  • n. a legislative assembly in certain countries (e.g., Japan)
  • n. the act of restricting your food intake (or your intake of particular foods)


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

Middle English diete, from Old French, from Latin diaeta, way of living, diet, from Greek diaita, back-formation from diaitāsthai, to live one's life, middle voice of diaitān, to treat.
Middle English diete, day's journey, day for meeting, assembly, from Medieval Latin diēta, alteration (influenced by Latin diēs, day) of Latin diaeta, daily routine; see diet1.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Old French diete, from Medieval Latin dieta, from Ancient Greek δίαιτα (diaita).


  • If adults take away one thing from this program, it could be that the word diet is a dirty word.

    Vivien Hoexter: From Generation to Generation: How Not To Visit Our Body Image Sins On Our Children

  • From now on, the word diet will merely refer to the enjoyable four or five times a day we eat, and stay whole, strong, and handsome as a result.


  • And anyway, the first three letters in the word diet should tell you what I want it to do.

    hush, hush

  • She joked with friends that the first three letters of the word diet were “die” and that she often felt she was slowly “killing” herself with diets.

    Clarity Quest

  • Consumers shun 'diet' foods in favor of 'zero' and 'smart' The term 'diet' on food labels has become increasingly unpopular over the years Tuesday, November 15 2011, 11:15 AM

    NYDN Rss

  • The term 'diet' on food labels has become increasingly unpopular over the years, with consumers drawn more towards products for the ingredients they contain, rather than what they don't contain, heard attendees of a virtual weight management conference.

    NYDN Rss

  • I regret that people associated the word 'diet' as me trying to push dieting on 4-year-olds and 6-year-olds.

    Outrage explodes over 'diet' book for girls

  • Kramer, who went on "Good Morning America" to defend the book, already has regrets, though using the word "diet" isn't one of them.

    Outrage explodes over 'diet' book for girls

  • Well, Arbon, my diet is adjusted but my eyes keep discerning dust devils where there should be Tim Horton coffee servers in little aprons going, "Whatchawanthoneypie?" with the absolute certainty that whatever Dawg orders would not please a goat in heat.

    The Lake Chapala Society

  • Diet Mr. Gorta doesn't like to use the word "diet," which he considers a temporary change in food choices.

    A Tailor-Made Plan to Lose Weight


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