BASICS OF THE ATKINS DIET
You may have already tried a lot of ways to trim that flab – exercise routines, workouts, diet pills, and even controlled meal plans – but to no avail. The Atkins Diet might be the alternative for you. You can cut down the carbs but still enjoy flavorful options that won’t deprive you of hunger.
The Atkins Diet, developed by a cardiologist named Robert C. Atkins in the 1960s, became a popular low-carb eating plan that mainly targets healthy fats, lean proteins, and high-fiber vegetables. The diet generally includes a combination of meat, poultry, seafood, dairy products like cheese, eggs, butter, and oils. The plan is to shift eating habits that would eventually help you lose pounds and keep it that way.
Four Phases of Atkins
The standard diet, or so-called Atkins 20, was designed with four phases.
- PHASE 1
Termed as the Induction Phase, nearly all carbohydrates from the diet are cut off to just 20-grams net carbs a day, with vegetables as the main source. This allows your body to undergo ketosis; when your body doesn’t have enough sugar, it breaks down fats, resulting in the build-up of ketones in the body.
At this point, you can eat greens like asparagus, celery, broccoli, cucumber, or green beans. Food rich in proteins like fish, shellfish, poultry, meat, and dairy food, should be included in every meal. You don’t have to restrict yourself from consuming oils and fats. Avoid sugar at this phase. Also, a daily intake of 8 glasses of water is vital, depending on how much weight you lose. Stay at this stage for about two weeks.
- PHASE 2
The Balancing Phase, where you measure the amount of carbs consumption while losing weight, as you add foods to your diet. In this phase, your diet continues with a 12-15 gram net carbs count. There is still no sugar intake. You can add nutrient-rich foods like berries, seeds, or nuts. Continue with this phase until you reach about 10 pounds from your desired weight goal.
- PHASE 3
In the Pre-Maintenance Phase, you can gradually add a range of foods to your meals, such as fruits, starchy vegetables, and whole grains. Slowly add 10 grams of carbs per week but have a close check when you lose weight. Stay at this phase until you reach your target weight or when you only have the last 10 pounds to go. At this time, you have already learned how to maintain weight loss.
- PHASE 4
Also called Lifetime Maintenance, you reach this phase when you’ve already achieved your weight goal. You continue to commit to this eating habit for life.
Advantages of Atkins Diet
Here are two primary benefits why you can choose Atkins Diet:
- Helps in Weight Loss
The Atkins Diet is an ideal diet plan for weight loss. Based on several kinds of research, you can lose about 15 pounds during the 1st phase. Water weight can be shed through Atkins Diet. The process by which this diet plan results in weight loss is the decreased overall calorie intake due to the decrease in carbs consumption since food choices are limited and the extra protein and fat intake make you feel fuller longer. Just like any other diet program, the key is consistency and commitment.
- Improves health conditions
Atkins Diet says its meal program can aid in preventing and improving critical health conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure, cardiovascular, and even metabolic ailments. Because the diet helps shed excess weight, it thus reduces and reverses risk factors for these conditions. Study shows that Atkins Diet highly improves blood, sugar and triglyceride levels. Because Atkins Diet requires only a medium effort to maintain, this might be the time to try out this eating plan. With all its benefits, you can be sure to live a better and healthier lifestyle.