To say there has been a lot of discussion over the last few years over the Atkins Diet is an understatement. The diet has become so popular that it is changing the way we eat and shop. The Atkins diet is based around a large reduction in the amounts of carbohydrates that are consumed by and individual, matched by a huge increase in the protein and fat consumed. As a ‘novel’ diet it seems to have some interesting effects.
Scores of people are claiming that it has resulted in vast reductions in weight; all these people cannot be imagining that the weight is coming off, so on that front it must be working. In our short article here let’s see how this is working in regard to its benefits and its drawbacks.
The diet has been shown to have favourable affects on the blood cholesterol ratio (good and bad cholesterol) which is thought to lower the risk heart disease. It also has a positive effect on lowering the release of blood insulin after eating, which is the main effect of promoting fat (blood lipids) as its main energy source and a total reduction in calories consumed. These last two, in my view is the underpinning to the weight loss experienced by individuals who are on the programme.
The main drawback for the Adkins diet is that nutritonalists are unsure of the long term effects of such a radical change in food groups consumed. Some of the predicted negative effects on the body include, stress on the liver and kidneys. The liver works as the main converter for excess protein to be removed in from the body in the urine. This large amount of protein conversion may result in the liver becoming over worked and stressed. The kidneys work to remove the urea (produced by the liver) from the body and here kidney stones may be produced in greater regularity. Loss of vitamins and minerals in the diet are also as concern as the body also gets these from carbohydrate rich sources (fruit, vegetables, rice pasta, and potatoes).
As with any diet that changes your normal way of eating, what happens when individuals go back to their old way of eating? Yes, the weight has come off, but if the individual does not modify their old eating regime the weight (and a bit extra) may be put back on again.
Therefore, the only way to loose weight effectively is to modify the way of eating into a lifestyle which promotes a varied, healthy eating with exercise. Whether the Adkins diet will be proved as healthy is still to be ascertained.