24.Sep.2012 Atkins Diet Overview

Atkins Diet


History of the Atkins Diet

Dr. Robert Atkins introduced his low carbohydrate diet program in the 1970′s. It’s based on the science that carbohydrates are stored as fat if they aren’t used for energy. To lose weight, the diet drastically reduces your carbohydrate intake to a fraction of what is recommended by health organizations.

Dr. Atkins witnessed numerous success stories involving those who tried out his diet. Years later, he updated and re-introduced his previous diet in the book known as The New Diet Revolution. In the past decade, this program has became widely popular.

How The Diet Works:

The diet claims you can loose 15 pounds in the first two weeks. The first two weeks is called the induction phase. During the induction phase, dieters reduce their carbohydrate intake to 20 net carbs per day by eating lean protein such as eggs, lean beef, chicken, and fish. Participants also eat fresh vegetables and leafy greens with natural fats such as olive oil, safflower oil, butter and advocado.

During these two weeks, dieters are encouraged to avoid milk, fruits, nuts, breads, pastas, sugars, trans fats and starchy vegetables.

After the first two weeks, participants start incorporating more carbs back into their diet by eating fruit, nuts, seeds and a wider variety of vegetables.

For the maintenance phase, the program recommends an intake of no more than 90 net carbs per day to stay within 5 pounds of your goal weight.

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This diet has been very popular and has worked for so many, but health experts and health organizations have criticized that the carbohydrate allowance is too low. They recommend that children and adults get at least 130 grams of carbohydrates per day for proper brain function, not the fractional 40-90 per day that the Atkins diet recommends.

In addition to being criticized for a an extremely low carbohydrate allowance, the Atkins Diet has met disapproval based on it’s fat intake allowance. The Heart Foundation published a statement expressing that their major concern with very low carb diets is not the restriction of carbohydrates or the increase in protein, but the diet’s high and unrestricted saturated fat content which may contribute to cardiovascular risk.

The Heart and Stroke Foundation shared the concern stating that low carbohydrate diets cause an increased risk of heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, bone mineral loss, gout and arthritis.

If you are interested in trying out a low carb diet like this one, consult with your doctor first to see if it’s right for you.

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