The Atkins Diet
What is ?
The Atkins diet, also known as the Atkins nutritional approach, is a low-carbohydrate diet promoted by Robert Atkins and inspired by a research paper he read in The Journal of the American Medical Association. The paper, entitled “Weight Reduction”, was published by Alfred W. Pennington in 1958. [source Wiki ]
The Atkins diet is classified as a fad diet.There is only weak evidence supporting its effectiveness in helping achieve sustainable weight loss [source Wiki ]
The Atkins diet is a kind of low-carbohydrate fad diet.
The diet involves limited consumption of carbohydrates to switch the body’s metabolism from metabolizing glucose as energy over to converting stored body fat to energy. This process, called ketosis, begins when insulin levels are low; in normal humans, insulin is lowest when blood glucose levels are low (mostly before eating). Reduced insulin levels induce lipolysis, which consumes fat to produce ketone bodies. On the other hand, caloric carbohydrates (for example, glucose or starch, the latter made of chains of glucose) affect the body by increasing blood sugar after consumption.
The Atkins diet is split into 4 different phases:
- Phase 1 (Induction): Under 20 grams of carbs per day for 2 weeks. Eat high-fat, high-protein, with low-carb vegetables like leafy greens. This kick-starts the weight loss.
- Phase 2 (Balancing): Slowly add more nuts, low-carb vegetables and small amounts of fruit back to your diet.
- Phase 3 (Fine-Tuning): When you are very close to your goal weight, add more carbs to your diet until weight loss slows down.
- Phase 4 (Maintenance): Here you can eat as many healthy carbs as your body can tolerate without regaining weight.
However, these phases are a bit complicated and may not be necessary. You should be able to lose weight and keep it off as long as you stick to the meal plan below. Some people choose to skip the induction phase altogether and include plenty of vegetables and fruit from the start. This approach can be very effective as well. Others prefer to just stay in the induction phase indefinitely. This is also known as a very low-carb ketogenic diet (keto).
Foods to Avoid
You should avoid these foods on the Atkins diet:
- Sugar: Soft drinks, fruit juices, cakes, candy, ice cream, etc.
- Grains: Wheat, spelt, rye, barley, rice.
- Vegetable Oils: Soybean oil, corn oil, cottonseed oil, canola oil and a few others.
- Trans Fats: Usually found in processed foods with the word “hydrogenated” on the ingredients list.
- “Diet” and “Low-Fat” Foods: These are usually very high in sugar.
- High-Carb Vegetables: Carrots, turnips, etc (induction only).
- High-Carb Fruits: Bananas, apples, oranges, pears, grapes (induction only).
- Starches: Potatoes, sweet potatoes (induction only).
- Legumes: Lentils, beans, chickpeas, etc (induction only).
Foods to Eat
You should base your diet around these healthy foods.
- Meats: Beef, pork, lamb, chicken, bacon and others.
- Fatty Fish and Seafood: Salmon, trout, sardines, etc.
- Eggs: The healthiest eggs are Omega-3 enriched or pastured.
- Low-Carb Vegetables: Kale, spinach, broccoli, asparagus and others.
- Full-Fat Dairy: Ghee, Butter, cheese, cream, full-fat yoghurt.
- Nuts and Seeds: Almonds, macadamia nuts, walnuts, sunflower seeds, etc.
- Healthy Fats: Extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, avocados and avocado oil.
Disclaimer : The content on this website is intended for informational and educational purposes only. Consult a doctor for medical advice, treatment or diagnosis.