Low carbohydrate diet

Synonyms

Atkins, Atkins nutritional approach, carbohydrates, fad diet, food pyramid, high protein diet, low carbohydrate diet, low carb diet, Robert Atkins, South Beach diet®.

Background

A low carbohydrate diet is one in which daily consumption of carbohydrates is limited or reduced, and fats and protein are increased. There are several types of low carbohydrate diets, but the most widely used low carbohydrate diet is the one advocated by Dr. Robert Atkins. The Atkins diet proposes that, in order to lose weight, one should adopt an eating style that radically departs from the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) food pyramid. It proposes the elimination of most carbohydrates as a source of energy; in the place of carbohydrates, the diet advocates the significantly increased consumption of fats, including trans fats and hydrogenated oils.

Carbohydrates are the most common source of energy in the American diet, and they occupy the bottom of the FDA food pyramid. Bran, cereal, bread, potatoes, and pasta all contain high amounts of carbohydrates. Eating carbohydrates result in the body's secretion of insulin. Insulin is a substance produced in the body to regulate the metabolism of carbohydrates.

In the 1960s, Atkins created what is known today as the "Atkins diet" after reading an article in a scientific journal. The cardiologist claimed to have treated thousands of obese patients, as well as his own obesity, after following the new diet plan. In 1972, Atkins published Dr. Atkins' Diet Revolution. In 2001, Atkins published an updated version of this book. In 2003 and 2004, the so-called "Atkins Nutritional Approach" became popular nationwide as Americans flocked to the idea of unlimited meat consumption.

The Atkins diet does not require dieters to count calories, weigh in, or record foods eaten. Despite the apparent simplicity of this diet, experts have recently found long-term health risks, including type 2 diabetes, kidney impairment and other serious medical problems. Some of the recent popularity in the Atkins diet was based on the continuing misconception of the fad diets that one could loose weight and achieve physical fitness without exercising or controlling food portions.

The Atkins diet can be easily confused with South Beach diet. They both have the initial two weeks of restricting carbohydrates. However, after this initial phase, they differ in two significant ways. Under the South Beach diet, "good" carbohydrates are not discouraged, and "bad" fats are. The Atkins diet does not recommend any carbohydrate consumption. The safety and long-term efficacy of Atkins is a subject of debate in the medical community.

The role that the Atkins diet may or not play in alleviating long-term trends of obesity and other metabolism related conditions requires further investigation.

A low carbohydrate diet is one in which daily consumption of carbohydrates is limited or reduced, and fats and protein are increased. There are several types of low carbohydrate diets, but the most widely used low carbohydrate diet is the one advocated by Dr. Robert Atkins. The Atkins diet proposes that, in order to lose weight, one should adopt an eating style that radically departs from the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) food pyramid. It proposes the elimination of most carbohydrates as a source of energy; in the place of carbohydrates, the diet advocates the significantly increased consumption of fats, including trans fats and hydrogenated oils.

Carbohydrates are the most common source of energy in the American diet, and they occupy the bottom of the FDA food pyramid. Bran, cereal, bread, potatoes, and pasta all contain high amounts of carbohydrates. Eating carbohydrates result in the body's secretion of insulin. Insulin is a substance produced in the body to regulate the metabolism of carbohydrates.

In the 1960s, Atkins created what is known today as the "Atkins diet" after reading an article in a scientific journal. The cardiologist claimed to have treated thousands of obese patients, as well as his own obesity, after following the new diet plan. In 1972, Atkins published Dr. Atkins' Diet Revolution. In 2001, Atkins published an updated version of this book. In 2003 and 2004, the so-called "Atkins Nutritional Approach" became popular nationwide as Americans flocked to the idea of unlimited meat consumption.

The Atkins diet does not require dieters to count calories, weigh in, or record foods eaten. Despite the apparent simplicity of this diet, experts have recently found long-term health risks, including type 2 diabetes, kidney impairment and other serious medical problems. Some of the recent popularity in the Atkins diet was based on the continuing misconception of the fad diets that one could loose weight and achieve physical fitness without exercising or controlling food portions.

The Atkins diet can be easily confused with South Beach diet. They both have the initial two weeks of restricting carbohydrates. However, after this initial phase, they differ in two significant ways. Under the South Beach diet, "good" carbohydrates are not discouraged, and "bad" fats are. The Atkins diet does not recommend any carbohydrate consumption. The safety and long-term efficacy of Atkins is a subject of debate in the medical community.

The role that the Atkins diet may or not play in alleviating long-term trends of obesity and other metabolism related conditions requires further investigation.

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