The Atkins diet initially took the States by storm before becoming all the rage in Europe.
How Atkins Diet Work
According to Dr Atkins, who popularised it in the 1970s, excess weight isn’t caused by overeating but by an unbalanced metabolism and, more specifically, poor absorption of sugar.
As our body draws its energy from sugar and fat, theAtkins diet dictates that if you reduce your carb intake so that your body is forced to draw from and burn itsfat reserves (instead of burning glucose), you will lose weight. As a result, calories aren’t relevant to Atkins. All carbohydrates are cut out: both complex, slow-release starchy carbs and pulses, and simple sugars like fruit, sugar and alcohol.
On the other hand, you can eat as much protein and fat as you like (meat, fish, seafood, eggs, unsweetened dairy produce, mayonnaise, butter, oil and cheese). Typical meals eaten on the Atkins diet are made up of meat, fish, eggs and cheese, and you can add low-carbohydrate vegetables, a small amount of green or fibre-rich vegetables, salad and herbs.
A typical day Atkins Diet
- Breakfast: Scrambled eggs, cheddar cheese, unsweetened tea or coffee.
- Lunch: Salad with chicken, celery, lettuce, cheese, olive oil.
- Dinner: Trout, green salad, avocado, olive oil, unsweetened low-fat yoghurt.
Results of Atkins Diet
Initial weight loss is fast (2 to 4 kilos in the first week) and then stabilises at around 6 kilos per month.Plus points of Atkins Diet
The Atkins diet allows you to lose weight fast, without getting hungry; it allows you to eat more than with a classic diet.
Because it’s so low in carbs, the Atkins diet limits snacking and suppresses your appetite.
The rules are quite easy to follow because you don’t have to count calories.Downsides of Atkins Diet
This diet has caused a lot of debate because in the long term it turns out it’s dangerous to health. The heavy fat intake increases cholesterol levels, which have harmful effects on the heart and arteries.
Your body is deprived of carbohydrates and draws its energy from fat and also from muscle, which can cause nausea plus physical and mental fatigue.
As with any diet that cuts out whole food groups, there is an increased risk of vitamin, mineral and fibre deficiencies.
The lack of fibre can cause constipation.
Finally, be aware that the weight you lose could pile back on as soon as you return to normal eating habits.