Atkins Diet is one of the low carbohydrate popular diets, which were proposed by Dr. Robert C. Atkins. Moreover, the diet was named so after him. It is a lifelong plan for eating. It restricts the amount of carbohydrate in the diet and puts more emphasis on fats and protein. It has various phases of weight loss and its maintenance by consuming very low carbohydrates. It has been included in many books and has launched a trend.
The objective of the Atkins diet is to help you lose your weight and maintain your body weight as well. It provides a healthy approach for eating which is beneficial for lifetime. It boosts the energy and improves health problems like metabolic syndrome and high blood pressure.
Atkins diet is recommended because:
- You can enjoy variety in amounts and types of food of this diet.
- It restricts carbs for weight loss
- It will change one’s eating habits overall
- Will help to improve health concerns
- Lifetime eating plan
- Provision for associated Atkins diet product like bars, shakes, cookbooks etc
You can also take advice from your physician before starting Atkins diet plan so that they can check for any unfavorable health condition.
Details about Atkins diet
It focuses mainly on eating a right balance of food comprising of protein, natural fats, and carbohydrates. Due to typical high carbohydrate and low fat some health problems arises like heart diseases and diabetes. It also controls carbs or having natural fats. Eating more carbohydrates such as white flour, sugar, and refined carbs result in imbalance in blood sugar, cardio vascular problems, and weight gain. It does not recommend eating very high protein but high fiber fruits and vegetables.
Atkins diet does not require any portion control or calorie counting. This uses a net carb system in which carbohydrate content is taken out from the fiber content. Its approach is to burn off the fat stores of the body and regulating the blood sugar level to achieve standard health without leaving you deprived of food or the feel of hunger. This also helps you to know and identify your carbohydrate tolerance.
According to Atkins diet, exercise is not at all required in weight loss, though it is vital to maintain and achieve other various health benefits. You can wait for two weeks for adjusting your body to dietary changes.
It follows four phases depending on the goals of your weight loss.
- Phase 1: Initially, you can take out all the carbohydrates from the diet. As most of the nutritious guidelines recommends, you just need to focus on having protein food like from poultry, eggs, meat, fish, shellfish, cheese, cucumber, peppers, celery, broccoli, asparagus, green beans etc.
- Phase 2: The second phase is ongoing loss of weight. It is a lengthy phase in which you slowly have to add nutrients rich carbohydrates like more vegetables, nuts, berries, and seeds.
- Phase 3: It is the pre-maintenance stage in which you gradually start increasing the amount of food you intake. It includes starchy vegetable, whole grain, and fruits. You can add on small amount of carbs each week in your diet. You have to maintain this stage for a month after you reach the desired weight.
- Phase 4: It is the life time maintenance stage in which you finally reach the desired weight. You can continue with this diet for your lifetime.
Menu of the Atkins Diet
- Breakfast- Steamed spinach, sausages, scrambled eggs, tea, coffee, herbal tea, water, diet soda.
- Lunch- Roasted beef with bean sprouts, green salad, onions, olives and some allowable beverages.
- Dinner- Asparagus, salmon steak, arugula salad, cucumber, cherry tomatoes, and allowable beverages.
- Snacks- Two kinds of snacks per day including Atkins diet products, chocolate shake, string cheese, olives, avocados, and granola bar.
In the very first week of phase 1, you will be able to lose around 7 kg though these are not the typical results. You will have to continue phase 2 for further loss of weight. In phase 3, you should not eat more carbs, which your body cannot tolerate.
Generally, weight loss can be gained through any dieting plan, which restricts calories. But for long-term results, one must know how low carbs have more effect in weight loss as compared to the standard diets of high carbohydrate as in most of the cases people start regaining weight they have lost during the diet plan. In Atkins diet, the choice of food is limited.
Down the line, you have to reduce calories to lose weight. By reducing fats and calories, you can emphasize on complex carbohydrates. During weight loss, you should be careful enough not to lose lean tissue or water weight. In some cases, losing weight too rapidly can only be safe if it is being done in healthy way. Exercise and physical activity can help you in burning calories and aiding the loss of weight. Physical activity should be regular to avoid regaining weight that you have lost during the process. It also provides numerous and various health benefits. It recommends to do average aerobic activity for better results.
Atkins diet can improve or prevent serious health issues like diabetes, metabolic syndrome, high blood pressure, cardio vascular diseases. Any other diet can also shed extra weight or reverse the risk factors for such diseases like diabetics and cardio vascular diseases. The diet for weight loss can improve levels of blood sugar or blood cholesterol on a temporary basis.
By eating heavy amount of protein and fat from the animal sources may increase the risk of cancer and heart disease. However, no risks from long-term use of Atkins diet have been reported so far, since researches on it have not lasted more than one year.
Rapid loss in weight can also result in side effects such as
Restricting carbohydrates too strictly may lead to insufficient fiber or nutritional deficiencies, diarrhea, constipation, and nausea. To improve your health profile, you can eat carbs, which are high in fiber, nutrient dense, and whole grain will help.