Atkins Diet redux – part 1

Without a doubt, the Atkins Diet is the most controversial weight loss plan of all time.

Whether you loved it or hated it, anybody with a few extra pounds on their body knew about Atkins.

They knew that Atkins was low carb. They knew that Atkins got rid of body fat faster than any other diet. They knew that doctors hated it and that it would probably kill them by clogging their arteries with cholesterol.

Another obvious aspect of the Atkins phenomena is that Robert Atkins got very rich selling low carb books and food. Very rich.

It was this financial success that caused other doctors to jump on the low carb diet bandwagon.

Some of these “new and improved” low carb diets included:

Protein Power (1995) By Natrushka PP and PPL were written by Michael and Mary Eades, two medical doctors practicing in Colorado. In 1995, they wrote Protein Power as a guide to better health and weight loss through diet, nutrition, supplementation, and exercise. In 2000, they followed up Protein Power with Protein Power Lifeplan, which was similar but…

Schwarzbein Principle (1999) By Joanna, Lisa and Gypsy After a few year of watching these patients get worse on the standard low-calorie, high-carbohydrate, low-fat, low-protein diet, she began to experiment with a lower carb way of eating. She discovered to her surprise that a diet that included red meat, butter, eggs, real cream, lots of low-carb vegetables and moderate amounts of …

Life Without Bread (2000) By Stephen Byrnes, PhD, RNCP The book begins with a definition of just what low-carb nutrition really is, followed by an historical survey of the approach by various doctors and nutritionists including such luminaries as William Banting, Weston Price, Vilhjamur Stefansson, John Yudkin, and Carlton Fredericks. In Lutz and Allan’s definition, the low-carb diet should include no more than 72 grams of carbohydrates a day. The rest of the diet should be made up of ….

Eat Fat, Get Thin, by Dr. Barry Groves (1999) By Rosebud educe your intake of refined carbs.
You can eat as much as you want of any meat, fish, poultry, cheese, cream, butter and eggs. You can eat as much as you like of green leafy vegetables: cabbage, brussels sprouts, cauliflower, broccoli, lettuce, and so on. He does say that it is advisable to cut out some foods such as sugar and cereals completely, but does include small amounts in his menus. He cautions that you may need to be wary of such foods. Fruit and vegetables are permitted, just cut down on the sweeter, starchier ones…..

The Diet Cure – Dr. Julia Ross (1999) By Alto She stresses that fats are not the enemy, carbohydrates are. There are other eating regimens — to combat yeast problems, etc. — as well as very specific guidance on supplements for a variety of ills (including cravings,….

Fat Flush Plan (2002) By Bloom Emphasis is not given solely to controlling insulin production but to “Five Hidden Weight Gain Factors” being: Liver toxicity, Waterlogged tissues,Fear of eating fat, Excess insulin, Stress fat ,….

Neanderthin (1999) By Karen In Ray Audette’s world, there are two theories that take you down the path to health. The first is the thermodynamic view that strives to create fitness by balancing caloric intake with output, limiting dietary fats and cholesterol and incorporating synthetic foods and supplements. This system is good for…

South Beach Diet (2003) By Monika The diet has evolved since the writing of the book, especially regarding dairy and some common vegetables such as carrots. Even before the diet changes, the major part of the book and the recipes contradicted each other at times – the recipes seem …

The Stone Age Diet (Eat Fat, Grow Thin) – Dr Richard Mackarness (1958) By Andy Davies The Author, Richard Mackarness, was the doctor who ran Britain’s first obesity and food allergy clinic. The book merges anecdotal observations from this clinic with a comprehensive review of all medical evidence throughout the world up to the mid-1970s. In the 1975 edition, this includes a ….

The Carbohydrate Addict’s Diet (1991) By Sandy According to the Heller’s research, many carbohydrate addicts produce too much insulin. This excess insulin creates hunger and causes the body to store fat. This program is designed to reduce hunger and carbohydrate cravings – thus achieving weight loss – by controlling ……

The Zone (1996) By Deanna The only change you make is to add more fat when you are in maintenance to prevent you from continual loss. Otherwise, you eat the same from the beginning….i.e. there is….

The Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) (1994) By Doreen The Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) is a strict grain-free, lactose-free, and sucrose-free dietary regimen intended for those suffering from Crohn’s Disease, Ulcerative Colitis, Celiac Disease, Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) and Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). The diet goes beyond…

Your Fat Can Make You Thin Dr. Calvin Ezrin (1999) By Eebee Serotonin is the most important neurotransmitter in the regulation of appetite and sleep. Carbohydrate, by stimulating insulin production, can boost serotonin levels, but only temporarily. Deficiency of serotonin causes …

The Insulin Resistance Diet (2001) By Scarlet According to the authors, it is not carbohydrates that cause weight gain, but lack of protein and an excess of carbohydrates consumed in one sitting. Therefore, the authors recommend that carbs and protein be consumed in the ratio …

The Go-Diet (1999) By Eebee The authors tell us that they are clinicians who became frustrated that the advice they were offering their patients on weight loss was not working. They undertook an in depth review of the scientific literature on weight loss as well as looking at all the popular diets. The aim was…

Sugar Busters (1995) By Rosebud “cut sugar to trim fat.” Modulating insulin is the key to the SUGAR BUSTERS! diet. The authors explain that by controlling the intake of sugar, insulin secretion can be controlled. They state that carbohydrates in an unrefined form, such as fruits, green vegetables, dried beans and whole grains require further digestive alteration before absorption, thus modulating insulin secretion. The end result is lower average insulin levels and less fat synthesis, storage and weight gain.

Thanks to for the info.

None of these diets has been as popular as Atkins.


Because it worked.


For just one minute, let’s just forget about all of the Atkins stereotypes. Let’s forget about the pork rinds and the cholesterol and the bacon and the threats of cardio-vascular disease and the cheddar cheese and sausages and the grease and the…

What was Atkins really saying. Let’s take a look at Phase 1 or the Induction Phase of Atkins’ plan.

For 14 days, you could eat only 20 grams or 80 calories of carbohydrates.

You could have as much protein and fat as you desired, but only 20 grams of carbs.

So what could you eat? What would your meals look like?

Specifically, what kind of carbs could you eat?

OK, I see lots of vegetable choices here. But wait you say, I can only eat 20 grams of carbs for the whole day.

Well, check this out.

This is just a partial list of my own “favorite” low density carbs.

So how much food can you get for 20 grams of carbs.

  • 8 avocados, or
  • 64 spears of asparagus, or
  • 6 cups of cucumber, or
  • 44 cups of iceberg lettuce, or
  • 52 cups of spinach, or
  • 400 radishes, or…well you get the point.

44 cups of lettuce…44 cups…that is a lot of salad.

So what happens after the 14 days of low carb hell?

After the induction phase, Atkins dieters were allowed to gradually increase the amount of carbohydrates eaten each day. While Atkins suggested that the average person should attempt to bring their carbs up only to 40-60 grams per day; in practice every Atkins dieter had their own metabolic tolerance for carbs.

I may need to stay at 40 grams to maintain my weight loss, while you may be able to push it up to 80 or 100 grams.

However, even at 100 grams of carbs, people grew tired of Atkins.

They were sick and tired of eating nothing but lettuce.

The diet worked, but it was HARD.

Too hard.

People quit and like the sugar junkies they were, they went back to their cookies and bread and pizza and cake with a vengeance. And the body-fat came back.


Not so fast. I think we can do better.

In Atkins Diet redux – part 2, I will outline a modified form of low carb dieting that will burn away the body-fat and then gradually shift you back to a higher carb way of eating.

Stay tuned.


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2 thoughts on “Atkins Diet redux – part 1

  1. I lost a lot of weight on Atkins’. In fact it’s the only diet that’s ever worked for me and I’ve even tried vegetarianism…

    I not only lost weight on Atkins but my overall health improved dramatically! – I used to suffer from headaches almost daily and through Atkins GONE and it’s been years now.

    My blood pressure came back to normal after being way too high, my cholesterol is also better!

    And last but not least – I gained muscle.. Nice abs, biceps nice Y shaped back.. etc

    Atkins makes perfect sense – All of these carb rich foods are NOT what our ancestors would have eaten they would have eaten mostly meat and some vegetables since in nature (without stores etc) meat is much easier to come by than cultivating veggies or fruits.

    Atkins is perhaps the best thing that i’ve ever done health wise.

    I’ve learned that anything that gets pushed in the media as good – reverse it.

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