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Atkin's Diet

They call themselves the Low Carb Leader

How this diet works: 

Atkins calls it the Great Fat Meltdown. He shows how we can change our metabolism and lose weight easily by eating foods high in protein and fat and limiting foods high in carbohydrate. Consuming a high level of carbohydrates causes overproduction of insulin, Dr. Atkins says, leading to increased hunger, weight gain and ill health. Carbohydrates are limited to 20 to 90 grams per day.  Instead of getting energy by supplying the body with glucose (from carbohydrates and sugars) to burn, the body burns fat.

Good points: 

For people who have tried a low-fat, high-carbohydrate weight loss plan without success, increasing protein in their diet often results in decreased food cravings and more rapid weight loss.   Atkins also sights other health benefits.  He makes a good case for why the modern fast food diet, high carbohydrate and low-fat meals are detrimental to your health. 

The diet is relatively easy to follow; there are no complicated meal plans. 

You also figure out for yourself what your limit of carbohydrates a day is by testing.   Thus, you know if you are burning fat, or will shortly be gaining it back.

Bad points:

Those opposed to Atkin's diet claim that a diet that limits carbohydrate causes the body to rely on fat or muscle for energy. When our body breaks down stored fat to supply energy, a byproduct called ketones are formed. Ketones suppress appetite, It is claimed that it is dangerous to anyone with diabetes, heart, or kidney problems and that they should NOT follow a diet that promotes the formation of ketones, without first seeing their doctor. (This argument is countered in Atkin's book as the ketones is not the same as the ketones found in diabetics)   Atkins does tell his patients to see a doctor before going on this diet.   

There are many claims about how bad the diet it, but they are each countered in Atkin's book so that you get a good understanding of what he is trying to get across.

 I would add here: Eating unlimited amounts of fat, especially saturated fat found in meat products, can lead to increased ill health without also getting the Omega 3 fatty acids. So, supplement with Omega 3 fatty acids. (See Essential Fatty Acids)

Duration: There is an induction diet, OWL (ongoing weight loss) diet a pre-maintenance and a maintenance diet.  If it works for you, you work out a lifetime plan for thinness and good health.

More information about this diet:

Taking Aloe Vera juice helps to digest the protein.

You can eat at restaurants, but you have to leave a lot behind - potatoes, etc.  Some restaurants will accommodate your order and substitute cottage cheese for potatoes, etc.   You can not drink alcohol and no caffeine is allowed.    It is difficult, but not impossible to follow if you are a vegetarian.

Purchasing the Atkins weight management books is necessary to follow his plan. The books also include recipes and sample menus that simplify meal planning.  For a copy of the book,  Dr. Atkins' New Diet Revolution, Revised Edition

More Information:

Dr. Atkins' New Carbohydrate Gram Counter

The All-New Atkins Advantage: The 12-Week Low-Carb Program to Lose Weight, Achieve Peak Fitness and Health, and Maximize Your Willpower to Reach Life Goals

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