The Atkins Diet 2
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If you need a strict regimen to get started on adhering to the Atkins Nutritional Approach™, try this step-by-step approach to Induction for two weeks.
Certain people succeed much better if given a strict regimen to follow. It's likely that if you eat exactly what's presented to you in a One-Week Induction Menu that spells out precisely what to eat, you will achieve weight loss. A reminder: Two weeks on Induction won't get the job done - only a lifetime of health-oriented behavior will. Once you see how easy it is to do Atkins and how impressive your results are, you'll surely want to learn more about making Atkins a permanent way of living. People who are already familiar with the Atkins approach may find this article a helpful review of Induction.
First of all, Dr. Atkins doesn't advise losing more than one pound a day. (People with a lot of excess weight may lose more than a pound a day in the beginning. And you may very well lose water weight this fast in the beginning, and that is also OK.) That's about as fast as a normal human body can dump pounds safely and comfortably. Go faster, and your metabolism won't have had time to adjust. You'll be losing an excessive amount of water and minerals and you may feel fairly awful. Back off and listen to your body.
An important health warning: None of the weight-loss phases of Atkins is appropriate for pregnant women or nursing mothers, and people with severe kidney disease should not do Atkins at all.
Before you begin, you should understand the Atkins Nutritional Principles for weight loss:
- During the Induction phase of Atkins your body switches from primarily burning carbohydrates to burning fat as its main energy source.
- Controlling carbohydrate intake stabilizes blood-sugar levels, producing diverse and favorable physical effects. You will achieve these benefits by switching to the slower-burning fuel found in proteins and fats.
- Typical results of these changes are a decrease in appetite, reduced sugar cravings and dramatic increases in energy.
To jump-start your weight loss, your carbohydrate intake during Induction should be no more than 20 grams a day in the form of vegetables and other acceptable food choices. In this phase you will be eating no breads, sugars, grains, potatoes, rice, pastas or fruits. Once your carbohydrate intake goes below a certain threshold, you will primarily burn your body fat for fuel. Since your body stores enough carbohydrate reserve to fuel it for approximately 48 hours, it will take that long for the process to start. You may feel hungry and out of sorts for the first two to three days. Be patient and persist.
You will follow these basic rules:
- Eat three meals a day. Stabilizing the blood sugar is the basic tool of controlled carbohydrate weight loss, and to achieve this you should not go longer than six waking hours without eating acceptable food. You can, however, eat four or five smaller meals a day, as long as you don't exceed 20 grams of carbohydrates.
- You are permitted to eat liberal amounts of eggs, meat and fish, including beef, pork, chicken, turkey, duck, wild game, shellfish, veal and lamb. Eat until you feel pleasantly full, but do not gorge.
- Liberal amounts of fats and oils are permitted. This includes butter, olive oil, mayonnaise and any oil that is liquid at room temperature. (Consume no hydrogenated oils or other trans fats - including margarine.)
- Herbs and spices are permitted as long as they do not contain sugar.
- Cheese (aged, full-fat, firm, soft, semisoft) is limited to three to four ounces daily. Fresh cheese, such as cottage cheese and farmer's cheese, is too high in carbohydrates for Induction.
- You may have up to three cups of loosely packed (measured raw) salad vegetables each day. This includes all leafy green vegetables, mushrooms, celery, radishes, green peppers and cucumbers. Click here for other permissible salad vegetables.
- Other vegetables low in carbohydrates (see Acceptable Foods) are limited to one cup daily. (If you have a cup of these veggies, consume only two cups of salad vegetables.)
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