The South Beach Diet, the Atkins Revolution, Sugar Busters, The Zone. Low carbohydrate diets are all the rage right now.In the seventies Dr. Robert Atkins publicized a new kind of diet solution and his ideas have remained popular for 30 years.
Those who want to shed pounds don’t have to rely on the Atkins Diet anymore either. Within the past few years there has been a spike in low-carb diet fads. Most recently, The South Beach Diet hit the market and has made a huge bang in the world of low-carb dieting.
The South Beach Diet is a low-carb diet, but claims to be far less restrictive than the popular Atkins Diet.
There are also options like The Zone and the women’s fitness center Curves which has added its own spin with the Curves Diet.
With so many options available it seems like low-carb is the way to go for those who want to lose serious amounts of weight. One may think, if there are so many options available then it must be a safe and healthy way to lose weight. People are adopting low-carb eating habits and keeping them for life, not just until they reach their goal weights. This can, however, have potentially dangerous results.
Low-carb diets all have one major aspect in common. ADA representative Dr. Chris Rosenbloom explains the diets as working through short-term weight loss that uses the process ketosis.
When the body has an insufficient level of carbohydrates, metabolisms are forced to turn to other sources. To supply the energy the body needs each day, metabolisms use ketones from stored fat or protein. Consequently, muscle mass is also broken down as a substitute for carbohydrates.
With the restrictiveness of low-carb diets, dieters are abandoning their low-carb lifestyles and gaining back the weight, plus interest. Dieters mistakenly believe that they can easily, quickly and permanently lose weight using only the tool of a low-carb diet.
For those whom the diets work for, the results are so encouraging that they are adopting low-carb eating habits for life. This is extremely dangerous and most of the diet books inform readers that the diet should only be used as a tool to help control weight, and that healthy lifestyles including not smoking and getting enough exercise are also essential to maintaining a low weight.
Rosenbloom says that such diets are missing some very important things vital to nutrition. The diets cut out fruits, some vegetables and whole grains, all which have proven health benefits. The diet is also high in cholesterol and fat and very low in fiber. The absence of adequate fiber can cause liver problems for dieters.
There is constant debate on the low-carb craze. Many other studies have found that such diets are in fact, safe and effective ways to permanently cut the weight and are helpful in raising total health. In a recent study by Reuters Health, researchers found that ketosis does not deplete muscle mass as long as there is an adequate fat and protein intake to supply metabolism an alternate breakdown source.
The truth is that carbohydrates are an important part of our diets. In their natural forms, carbohydrates provide many aspects of healthy living. They are rich in protein, minerals, fiber, vitamins and water.
In a diet consisting of 1,200 calories per day, it is suggested that 120 grams of carbohydrates should be included in that diet. Ideally, each meal should contain approximately 30 grams of carbohydrates.
In low-carb diets such as the Curves Diet, during the first two weeks dieters are restricted to 20 grams of carbohydrates a day. Following these initial two weeks, a diet of 40-60 grams a day is recommended. While these numbers are considerably lower than the suggested norm for health, Curves reinforces that these numbers are only to help in controlling the weight but that they should be abandoned once weight control is achieved.
There are numerous diet fads on the market today. People are always trying to find a way to lose lots of weight in short amounts of time with very little change of lifestyle. This is a dream. The important thing to remember when taking on any kind of diet, low-carb included, is that exercise is an extremely important aspect in healthy living. When using a low-carb diet strength training is vital to ensure muscle stability from ketosis. The most important part of safely and effectively losing weight is to include activity in your life.
For more information on the debate of low-carb diets visit www.lowcarb.ca which includes some pros and cons of low-carb living. Most importantly, before starting any kind of diet, talk to your doctor or a nutritionist before doing anything that could end up being detrimental to your health in the long run. If you choose to use a diet make sure you understand what the diet is so that you can lose weight safely, effectively and slowly to ensure that you remain healthy. When trying to lose weight remember to combine a regular work-out with healthy eating.