The Atkins diet was created in the early 1970s. It’s an extremely controversial diet, containing principles. Its assumption is simple – we avoid carbohydrates and simple sugars. The daily menu is based on protein and fats as well as healthy vegetables and fruits. This is a very popular style of nutrition, especially in the US and UK.
Products consumed during the Atkins diet
It’s amazing that by using this way of eating, we can eat fatty foods without any restrictions, such as bacon, sausage, loin, pork neck. In addition, we also eat fish and use vegetable oils in the kitchen, which should be combined in small quantities with vegetables (especially with lettuce) and fruit.
Other products allowed are vegetables, mainly spinach, turnip, peas, kohlrabi, beetroot, parsley, green beans, onion, pumpkin, zucchini, tomatoes, cucumbers.
Atkins diet is based on 3 stages
STAGE 1 – eliminates the majority of carbohydrates that we can eat only 20 g per day of. Prohibited products are: bread, starch, sweets, dairy products – including yoghurts, because they contain lactose – milk, and sugar. You can drink weak and unsweetened tea and regularly drink water, minimum 2 liters a day.
During this stage, coffee, caffeinated beverages and cigarettes should be discontinued. You can replace milk with soy milk. Avoid frying, bake meat, and steamed vegetables. They retain more nutrients then.
STAGE 2 – During the second stage (proper diet) you can increase the number of carbohydrates consumed to 30-50 g per day. The menu becomes more varied. It’s allowed to eat fruit (those with a low glycemic index and having a small amount of carbohydrates, i.e. raspberries, blueberries, strawberries) and more vegetables.
STAGE 3 – diet for the rest of your life. It’s still based on fats and proteins, but it’s possible to increase the amount of sugars, remembering that they can not be combined with animal fats and eggs. The daily menu consists of 3 larger meals and 2 snacks.
Atkins diet – disadvantages
This way of weight loss can only be used by healthy people. Give it up if you suffer from hypertension, diabetes, atherosclerosis or have high cholesterol levels. Atkins diet is low in vitamins, so during its lifetime you should take vitamin supplements and minerals (mainly beta-carotene, l-carnitine, vitamin C, potassium and coenzyme Q10). Its long-term use may affect our health. The consequences are a lack of magnesium and sodium, excessive acidification of the body, gout, caries, and even atherosclerosis and strokes. Some people may get constipation, fatigue and headaches during the first few days. If they do not pass within 4-5 days, return to the normal diet and consult a doctor.