I remember doing the Atkins Diet many years ago at a time when the founder, Dr. Robert C Atkins, was still alive. I read his book over and over again and stuck to the rules. It is a low carb diet which did work.
It is stated that when you go low carb your body burns fat for energy rather than carbs and if any carbohydrates aren’t used up then the body stores them as fat.
Now don’t we just love carbohydrates! I know I do. So a diet rich in carbs without the required amount of exercise to burn off these carbs means that we are naturally going to store fat whereas if you reduce the amount of refined and sugary carbs in your diet then your body will turn to burning the fat instead.
From the health point of view apart from just losing weight it is said that a low carb lifestyle can help with regulating your blood sugar levels, reducing inflammation and helping with diabetes and heart disease. Along with this you gain more energy and it reduces your cholesterol level.
Now that sounds good!
I have to admit that I did enjoy the low carb lifestyle for quite a long time.
The Atkins Diet has four separate phases:
- Induction – to kick start your weight loss eating between 115-175 grams of protein-rich food every meal and 20g of carbs per day.
- Ongoing Weight Loss – the way to eat until you have reached your ideal weight. You gradually increase your carbs by an extra 5g of carbs per week until you find your carb tolerance.
- Pre-Maintenance – where you add extra carbs until you reach your personal level. Here you continue to build up your carb tolerance until you reach your maximum. During this phase you increase carbs by 10g per week. Stay at your level until you have reached your goal weight.
- Maintenance – establishing your forever way of eating and adjusting your fat intake as your carbs increase.
Oh and one final thing – don’t think that this is all animal protein and fats because you can stick to this plan even if you are a vegetarian as you are allowed extra carbs and start at phase 2.