Top 10 highlight on Atkins Diet
The Atkins diet,
is a low carbohydrate diet devised by Dr Robert C Atkins in the 1960ís. The
science behind the plan is that increasing
protein intake and reducing
carbohydrate induces changes in metabolism, that enables you to lose weight. The
Atkins diet plan leads to fewer food cravings and faster weight loss.
According to Dr
Atkins- a low-carbohydrate diet provides
metabolic advantages that allow one to eat as
many calories as one ate before starting the carbohydrate-restricted diet and
lose weight at the same time. Some, indeed, he says, can eat even more calories
and still lose weight. He states further that it's not that "calories don't
count" (somewhat confusing us since he maintains that, in fact, they don't
count), it's that you can just sneak the calories out of your body, unused or
dissipated as heat. Atkins, then, rejects the fact that the human body is held
accountable to the Laws of
The 'target' candidates for
high-protein/low-carbohydrate diets fit into the following profile:
Body Type -
- Meat, poultry, dairy products, eggs, seafood, smoked meats and fish.
- Anaerobic /reshaping:
weight training, spot-reducing, body toning, callanetics.
- which need spot-reducing Face and neck; abdomen and back.
Body's Metabolic Rate :
The Atkins diet
aims to boost body's metabolic rate and once the metabolic rate has changed
the body adjusts to a new way of burning fat. This is how it works- The body
uses insulin to control the use, distribution and storage of energy, it
processing of blood sugar. After the consumption of carbohydrate,
your blood sugar rises and this provokes your pancreas to secrete insulin.
Insulin converts some of the glucose from the carbohydrates to
glycogen. However, if your
glycogen levels are already full insulin converts the glucose to triglyceride
- excess fatty tissue. After years of over consuming carbohydrates, your
bodyís insulin response can start to work less effectively. As a result you
produce excess insulin, which diminishes blood-sugar levels and leaves you
feeling shaky, headachy and hungry.
Many people believe that carbohydrates
are your bodyís sole source of energy. However, when we reduce carbohydrates,
our bodies begin to burn
fat for fuel. This "fat metabolism," or lipolysis/ketosis
- this is not like the metabolic state of starvation, when the body begins to
cannibalize both lean body mass and fat (this does not happen on the Atkins
diet as you consume sufficient amounts of fat and protein). Despite this, The
Atkins diet and other low-carb diets have come under much criticism by
skeptics who claim that the diet's fat burning state is unhealthy and the
restriction of carbohydrates is too severe. The ketones (a by-product of burning fat) your body produces are evidence
that you are burning fat for energy. When you are in lipolysis/ketosis your
body will not store fat, so you are able to eat a substantial amount of fat
when following the Atkins lifestyle, without the risk of
Acceptable foods Banned (or restricted) foods
Steaks, roasts, breads, grains, pastas
Chicken, quail, sugary food, honey
Pheasant, turkey Beans, lentils, legumes
Cheeses-all varieties Vegetables
Eggs, omelettes Fruit
Pork, veal Sweets
Seafood, fish Alcohol
Salad (two small green salads a day)
Water, club soda, coffee (upto 6 cups per day)
Atkins is the easiest
way to maintain
weight loss. The trouble with losing weight on a
low-calorie/low-fat diet or on a liquid-protein diet is, that the
maintenance program is so very different from the weight loss program.
So when you go back to your former way of eating, the pounds return
with astonishing speed because you are unprepared for maintenance.
Stabilized Blood Sugar :
When we eat a diet based on cereals, fruits and
vegetables, the fluctuations in the body's blood sugar level may aggravate.
According to Dr Atkins, a lower carbohydrate intake enables body to maintain
an even blood sugar level throughout the day. Also, with low carb diet, there
are no hunger pangs. People, when following diet plans have to fight against
the hunger pangs between meals and constant obsession with food.
Lower Insulin Levels :
By following an individualized controlled carbohydrate
nutritional approach that results in lower insulin (A naturally occurring
hormone secreted by the Pancreas that
Glucose into muscle cells and other tissue, where it is stored for energy
use. Insulin is also known as the Fat-producing hormone.)
production, people at high risk for chronic illnesses such as cardiovascular
and diabetes will
see a marked improvement in their clinical parameters. Itís as simple as that. An essential hormone, insulin governs the basic
mechanism by which the body lays on fat. When found in excessively high levels
- we medical folk call that state hyperinsulinemia -insulin
vigorously promotes the development of diabetes, atherosclerosis and
hypertension. More recently, it has also been linked to increased risk of
breast cancer and polycystic ovarian syndrome.
lipid profile :
Lowered blood pressure :
high blood pressure have a close relation. After six
months on the Atkins diet, subjects experienced an average weight loss of 37.5
pounds. There were also considerable drops in blood pressure, glucose levels
and insulin levels. Of the 17 patients who had high blood pressure before the
start of the diet, none remained so afterward.
With Atkins, you meet
your nutritional needs by eating healthy, wholesome foods and omitting
junk food. As a result, fatigue level drops. This occurs not merely
because the pounds drop off, but because the physical consequences of
a truly dysfunctional blood-sugar and insulin metabolism are reversed.
People who do Atkins start feeling good long before they reach their
The plan's high protein
component preserves muscles so you don't just get skinnier, you get
Loss of water :
On a practical level, such
high-protein, high-fat, low-carbohydrate diets tend
to promote the loss of water weight. However much this diuretic effect may
engender a false sense of accomplishment in the dieter, this weight can and
does return quickly.
Imbalanced Diet :
Last but not
the least, an imbalanced diet (like Atkins), can revert the body to a fasting
state called ketosis, in which the body begins to metabolize muscle
tissue instead of fat. Authors of these diets actually advocate "taking
advantage" of ketosis to hasten weight loss. Deliberately inducing ketosis can
lead to muscle breakdown, nausea, dehydration, headaches, light-headedness,
irritability, bad breath, and kidney problems. In pregnancy, ketosis may cause
fetal abnormality or death. It can be fatal in individuals with diabetes.
beginning any diet or exercise program, CONSULT YOUR DOCTOR.
committee of the American Heart Association has issued a science advisory
warning on high-protein diets. The committee has stated:
Such diets may produce short-term weight loss through dehydration.
Weight loss may also occur through caloric restriction resulting from
the fact that the diets are relatively unpalatable.
The high fat content may be harmful to the cardiovascular system in the
long run. Atkins' diet can lead to the kind of rapid weight fluctuations
that adversely effect the heart. Moreover, the breakdown of fatty acids that
occurs during ketosis may also increase the risk of heart disease.
Any improvement in blood cholesterol levels and insulin management would
be due to weight loss, not the change in composition.
A very high-protein diet is especially risky for patients with diabetes
because it can speed the progression of diabetic kidney disease .