Atkins Diet what´s that? Everyone has heard of the Atkins Diet. It sounds wonderful, being able to eat egg and bacon for breakfast and not feel guilty about it, enjoy a steak and other food, which is usually taboo in the diet world. We have always been lead to believe that a low fat diet is the way to go, so how does the Atkins Diet work and is it healthy?
As you have to eat so many high fat food, you have to give up most carbohydrate based food like potatoes, pasta and rice etc, but also fruit, vegetables, milk and even certain types of vegetables.
In 2003, it’s most popular year, over three million people in the Britain were estimated to have tried it and many Hollywood stars swore by it. But, many nutritionists and medical professionals were not convinced by it.
As most of you know, the diet was created by Dr Robert Atkins (deceased) and it’s a high protein, low carbohydrate diet. His' theory is simple: if you don’t eat any carbohydrates, then your body has to burn stored fat for energy. You burn more calories if your body burns fat, as opposed to carbohydrates and so you’ll lose weight more quickly. Also, your blood sugar levels remain are balanced without carbs, so no more cravings and therefore no binges or overeating.
There are four phases to the Atkins diet. The first phase is called Induction and you have to do it for at least two weeks or longer if possible. You have to eat as little as 20g of carbohydrates a day, as opposed to the normal, average daily intake of about 250g. But, you can eat unlimited amounts of red meat, chicken, fish, cheese, eggs, cream and butter and it’s then that your body switches from burning carbohydrates to fat and the body’s blood sugar levels stabilise.
Phase two is called the Ongoing Weight Loss phase, during which you can increase your carb intake by 5g a day for a week at a time, until you reach your Critical Carbohydrate Level for losing weight. This level is the maximum amount of carbohydrates you can eat each day to lose between 1 and 3lb a week. This varies from person to person, but is still much lower than the normal average daily intake.
Then there’s phase three, which is called the Pre-maintenance phase, which you enter if you only have a few pounds left to lose. Your carbohydrate intake is increased by 10g each day for a week at a time. This should slow down your weight loss to no more than 1lb a week and is preparation for the final phase called weight maintenance. At this point you can start to include small portions of starchy food such as bread and pasta.
Lifetime Maintenance is the final phase and is supposed to help you maintain your weight. You still need to limit your carbohydrate intake to less than 90g a day though, i.e. you’ll have to eat low carb food for the rest of your life to maintain your ideal weight.
There can be some negative side effects when you follow the Atkins diet. Burning fat results in the production of ketones and your body enters a state called ketosis. This can lead to bad breath, tiredness and nausea, amongst other problems. You may also become constipated as your diet will lack fibre.
Many medical professionals are afraid that there may be long term effects caused by the Atkins Diet, such as a possible increase in the risk of heart disease, vitamin and mineral deficiencies. The lack of calcium may increase the risk of osteoporosis, deficient amounts of antioxidants may increase the risk of heart disease, cancer, eye diseases and premature ageing, amongst others. It is also possible that the high protein intake may cause kidney problems or weaken bones.
It is very difficult to follow the diet if you are vegan, macrobiotic or vegetarian, it is a diet really aimed at mast eaters. Plus, you do not get to eat a balanced diet, which most health professionals recommend.
The press has been full of positive and negative articles over the years and the opinions of health professions varies. It was also said that Dr Atkins was obese and suffering from heart problems at the time of his death, even though these were refuted and his condition put down to other medical problems!
At AIQUM the nutrition and exercise plans are based on scientific research so that you can lose weight and keep it off, while staying healthy. Forget other diets, AIQUM Germany has already been tested and highly recommended by the German Consumer Association, the Organic Consumer Test, as well as German magazines like Fit For Fun, Shape, Menshealth and Tomorrow, amongst others.
Take a look at the before and after photos of some of our members and read their sensational success stories.
Atkins Diet Sample Menu
Phase 1 – Induction:
Bacon and eggs
Salad with grilled chicken
Mixed salad with dressing
A piece of cheese
Phase 2 – Ongoing Weight Loss
Tomato Omelette with ham
Chicken burger with cheese and relish
Stir Fried Chinese cabbage
Phase 3 – Premaintenance
Pancakes with sugar free syrup and blueberries
Ham and cheese omelette
Grilled salmon with an almond crust
Broccoli & onions
Phase 4 – Lifetime Maintenance
Two slices of bread
Prawn salad and mixed kale
Herb Roasted Chicken with Lemon
Brown rice with asparagus
A piece of melon
At AIQUM the nutrition and exercise plans are based on scientific research so that you can lose weight and keep it off, while staying healthy. You can get healthy low carb plans oder low fat – it´s your choice!
Forget other diets, AIQUM Germany has already been tested and highly recommended by the German Consumer Association, the Organic Consumer Test, as well as German magazines like Fit For Fun, Shape, Menshealth and Tomorrow, amongst others.
Take a look at the before and after photos of some of our members and read their sensational success stories: