The Atkins Diet 3
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There are a number of dos and dont's you must adhere to for successful weight loss.
- Drink at least eight 8-ounce glasses of pure water daily. This can be filtered, mineral or spring water (not seltzer). You may also have unlimited amounts of herbal tea (without sugar), but these do not count toward your total of eight glasses.
- Drink only decaffeinated coffee and tea and use only acceptable sweeteners (see below).
- Treat aspartame (NutraSweet® or Equal®) with caution. Avoid whenever possible. This includes products sweetened with these ingredients, such as diet sodas and diet Jell-O. Instead use sucralose, (Splenda®) or saccharin (Sweet'n Low®).
- Check labels on other products that purport to be low- or controlled carb.
- When eating out, be careful you're not consuming "hidden" carbohydrates in sauces or breaded products. Tell your waiter that you would like your food prepared free of sugar, flour and cornstarch.
- At a minimum, take a good daily multivitamin with minerals, including potassium, magnesium and calcium, but without iron.
- Unless you are physically unable to do so, exercise every day, even if it's just a walk around the block. This is an important part of the program in all phases and will certainly increase the rate at which you lose weight. That's because exercise not only causes you to burn calories, it also accelerates your metabolism.
- Have a snack of a permissible food an hour or two after a meal if you wish.
You must not:
- Overeat. You may have heard that you can eat as much as you desire of the acceptable foods. Not so. Stuff yourself with steaks and cheeseburgers, and some of that protein will convert to glucose in your body. Instead, simply eat the amount that allows you to feel satisfied.
- Drink alcohol in any form.
- Use more than three packets of sucralose (Splenda) daily. (More and more products are being made with Splenda so if you use any, don't forget to include those grams in your tally.)
- Cheat. It takes two to three days for the body to switch from burning carbohydrates (in the form of glucose) to fat burning. One cheat and you're back to a glucose-burning metabolism, and you can lose the effects of two or three days of fat burning.
You must not eat any of the following:
- Sugar (in any form, including corn syrup, honey and maple syrup)
- Milk or yogurt (cream is allowed in limited amounts)
- Fruit and fruit juice
- Flour products (breads, pasta, crackers, etc.)
- Grains or cereals
- Beans and legumes
- Starchy or high-sugar vegetables (potatoes, yams, corn, peas, parsnips, beets, carrots)
- Sweet condiments (such as most ketchups, barbeque sauce and balsamic vinegar)
- French dressing, Thousand Island dressing (check labels for carb count)
- Cottage cheese, farmer's cheese and other fresh cheeses
- Nuts and seeds
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