The Atkin's Diet
Summary: Atkin's allows unlimited protein and
oils but no starches or sugars. Many prefer The Zone
Diet instead, with its moderate levels of protein, fats,
The Atkin's Diet allows few carbs to be consumed but unlimited proteins, fats, and oils (including cheese,
butter, and eggs) can be eaten. Atkin's is a faster way to lose weight and improve serum cholesterol
levels than the Zone. I have seen
someone do Atkin's diet strictly and drop one hundred points in bad serum
cholesterol in one month, while dropping serum triglycerides and increasing good
cholesterol levels a great deal. But, one should only do Atkin's if committed
to eating a lot of non-starchy vegetables to provide fiber, drinking
plenty of water (see The
Water Cure), and taking digestive enzymes if needed, to prevent possible ill effects
on the digestive tract. This is not usually a factor since the diet, like
any carb limited one, greatly improves the function of the liver which improves
digestion., but may be necessary for some.
Another factor to consider is one's blood type before starting an Atkin's diet. Blood type A's should probably not follow this diet since they tend to be healthier when tending more towards a vegetarian diet. Blood type O's can do well on this diet, though, if committed to eating plenty of vegetables. As a side note, blood type O's do not usually do well on a vegetarian diet. See Eat Right 4 Your Type for more information.
The main problem with following an Atkin's diet as outlined in the official Atkin's Diet website is their recommendations of the processed foods they manufacture under their Advantage line. It appears they have no regard to health issues such as avoiding artificial sweeteners (including aspartame), hydrogenated oils, soy products, petrochemicals, and other ingredients that most complementary health proponents recommend against. There are safe complementarys to these ingredients - stevia, vegetable glycerin, fractionated vegetable oils, whey and other non-soy proteins, etc, but like most manufacturers of these types of "health" foods, they appear to have no regard for health.