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A GUIDE TO UNDERSTANDING THE ATKINS DIET
WHAT'S OLD IS NEW AGAIN
The Atkins diet has been around since the 1960s, but despite its longevity, a lot of people still don't understand what it entails. It's not just about getting rid of carbs and it does not qualify as a fad any longer. It does however; involve changing your lifestyle for the good of your health.
The Atkins Diet Isn't about Limitations
One of the signature details of the Atkins diet is that it's anti-carb, which leads people to believe the diet plan is about limiting your food choices. The Atkins diet is about balance more than anything else. The plan includes an introductory phase where carbohydrates are restricted. Most people stop reading there and assume that you can never touch a carb again. That's not true. Once the introductory phase is completed, carbohydrates are gradually reintroduced to your diet, but the focus is on health. Refined sugars and empty carbs are out for the count.
The Focus Is on Fats and Proteins
Dr. Atkins came to realise that the body stores carbohydrates. They ultimately turn into fat, all while sapping your energy and making you feel lethargic. Consider how you feel after consuming a big piece of cake or a bag of potato chips. The doctor also realised that the body does not store fat and protein, but instead burns them for energy. The thing to remember is that you can't inhale your favourite fatty foods and proteins without researching their nutritional values. Stick to healthy fats and lean proteins for the most success.
You May Experience Some Side Effects
Drastically removing carbs from your diet can cause some unwanted side effects. Those participating in the Atkins diet might experience weakness, fatigue, dizziness, headaches, and constipation. Constipation is particularly probable, given that you are consuming more protein and less fiber. To counter act these side effects, you can add high fiber carbs and whole grains into the diet. Additionally, you can talk to your physician about taking nutritional supplements to offset some of these uncomfortable feelings. However, it’s important to be note that supplements will not fully counteract a nutrient deficiency and you should ultimately try to include more fruits and vegetables into the diet.
It's Different from the Ketogenic Diet
It's not uncommon for people to equate the Atkins diet and the Ketogenic diet, which is a diet that was originally designed to help treat epilepsy. It still does that, but it also results in impressive weight loss, much like Atkins. Unlike the Atkins plan, the keto diet limits carbohydrates for the duration. In fact, it's more of a lifestyle change than a diet, and consists of 60 percent high fats, 35 percent adequate protein, and 5 percent carbs. Both eating plans revolve around forcing the body to withdraw from carbs, which causes the liver to convert high fats into both fatty acids and ketones. Ketones turn into ATP, which powers the cells. The main aim of each plan is to place your body into the state of nutritional ketosis. Because they both depend on strict percentages, you may want to monitor what you eat with a food tracking app like Lifesum. Neither plan works if you cheat or fudge the numbers.
You Don't Count Calories
Counting calories is tedious and time-consuming. It's not necessarily something you want to get caught doing, either. On the Atkins plan, it's not a requirement. You just don't have to track your calories. The nature of the diet and its reliance on healthy fats and lean proteins will leave you satiated at every meal. The Atkins diet changes your eating habits while making you healthier; would you try it?
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