What is the Atkins Diet?
Eating habit is a key component to improve when trying to lose weight. While many weight loss programs recommend different diet plans, a unique low-carb diet has gained huge popularity over the last decade. This certain weight loss plan is called the Atkins Diet, named after Dr. Robert C. Atkins (1930-2003). The Atkins Diet focuses on reducing carbohydrate consumption, while increasing protein and “healthy” fat in four unique phases
Is It Effective?
Initially, when the Atkins Diet was proposed, there was mixed reaction from the health community. The main reason was due to the high levels of saturated fat content in the diet.
However, in recent studies, it has been revealed that saturated fat is not as harmful as once thought. In fact, it was by limiting the amount of sugar and carbohydrates intake, not fat, that led to ultimate weight loss by many of his patients, and they successfully kept that excess weight off by following the Atkins Diet.
In addition, the effectiveness of low-carb diet is attributed to reduced appetite, as lower calorie intake and high protein diet keeps you full for a longer time.
The 4 Phases:
Phase 1 – Induction:
In this phase, the main goal is to break the habit of eating more than required. Eat until satisfied, but do not overeat. Take a break in between and have a glass of water if need be. The following guide will help get through the first phase:
- Cut down on carb consumption to only about 20g per day. This restriction is achieved through eating carbs that are only in salad and other non-starchy veggies.
- It is recommended to eat 3 regular sized meals or 4-5 smaller meals. Each meal should contain at least 115g to 175g of protein-rich food.
- Do not skip meals or go over 6 hours during the day without eating. Drink about eight glasses of water everyday.
Phase 2 – On-going weight loss:
After starting out with a carb deficit diet, this phase will help add carbs slowly back to your diet while maintaining weight loss.
- Add an extra 5g of carbs back to your diet each week (up to 40g) to find a tolerance level.
- Foods such as nuts, seeds, berries and certain cheese can now also be added to the diet.
- Eat plenty of food containing natural fats. Continue drinking lots of water.
Phase 3 – Pre-maintenance:
This phase is about fine-tuning to meet the initial weight loss goal. Once the goal is in sight, you will better understand your body’s carb tolerance.
- Add an extra 10g of carbs per week (up to 100g) until you achieve your goal.
- More fruits, grains and starchy vegetables can be added.
- Monitor your daily carb intake. Continue drinking plenty of water.
Phase 4 – Maintenance:
It’s amazing once you reach your target weight and keep it that way.
- Continue with the variety of foods from phase 3 and monitor your carb intake.
- Maintain a healthy lifestyle by exercising and adding 30 minutes of physical activities into your daily routine.
Atkins versus Keto Diet
Keto and Atkins diet are both categorized as low-carb diets.
Phase 1 – Induction of the Atkins diet represents what keto diet supports, that is restricting refined carbs such as sugary drinks, processed food and other high calorie snacks.
However, with Atkins diet one can gradually increase the calorie intake over a period. It allows to choose from greater variety of fruits and vegetables hence, making it more appealing to follow.
Overall, the famous Atkins Diet is a low carb diet recommended for effective weight loss through a series of phases. It is a healthy way to shed those extra pounds by controlling your diet. It certainly does the trick and gets you feeling more positive towards your own self. Try it out, and enjoy.