You’ve probably heard plenty about the Atkins Diet over the years. You know, that incredibly well-liked and controversial diet which involves cutting right down on your carbohydrate intake. You may have also heard of “ketogenic diets” – it’s a more scientific term so you may not recognise it. Did you realise that the Atkins Diet is a kind of ketogenic diet? In this post we will have a brief take a look at what the term means and my experience of this kind of diet.
The Atkins Diet
The initial Atkins Diet book, Dr. Atkins’ Diet Revolution, was introduced in 1972. Dr Robert Atkins was interested, among other things, to get his own weight in check. Primarily using self-experimentation techniques he found that eating a diet plan very low in carbohydrates tended to help make him lose weight fast. His experimentation was based on other research papers and, as a result of his very own studies, he became confident that the science behind the diet program was sound. The resulting book had been a resounding success and, within the next 3 decades up to his death in 2003, Robert Atkins continued to produce popular diet books based upon the low-carbohydrate principle.
Some would argue that only the first “phase” in the Atkins Diet is “ketogenic” but it’s very clear this element is central to the whole diet. There are many other diets of this type with assorted names and claims but, when they talk about severely restricting the consumption of carbohydrates, then they’re probably forms of ketogenic diet. The process of “ketosis” is very complicated and would take the time to explain but, essentially, it really works because cutting down on carbs restricts the amount of blood sugar accessible to trigger the “insulin response”. Without a triggering from the glucose-insulin response some hormonal changes happen which make the body to begin burning its stores of fat as energy. This provides the interesting effect of causing your mind to be fuelled with what are referred to as “ketone bodies” (hence “ketogenic”) rather than the usual glucose. The whole process is really quite fascinating and i also suggest that you read up on it.
All forms of ketogenic diet are controversial. A lot of the debate surrounds the issue of cholesterol and whether ketogenic diets increase or decrease the levels HDL “good” cholesterol and/or increase or decrease LDL “bad” cholesterol. The amount of research studies is increasing year on year in fact it is certainly possible to point to strong cases on both sides of the argument. My conclusion (and this is simply my personal opinion) is the fact that one could equally create the case that the carbohydrate-laden diet has unwanted effects on cholesterol and I think that, on balance, a ketogenic-type weight loss program is healthier compared to a carbohydrate-heavy one. Interestingly, there isn’t a great deal controversy about whether ketogenic diets work or not (it’s widely accepted which they do); it’s mostly regarding how they work and whether which is good/bad/indifferent from a health perspective.
I too am a bit of a self-experimenter. I know this method isn’t for everybody and it does carry an part of risk. I’ve experimented having a ketogenic diet for around eight years. I sometimes lapse, mostly during holidays, however i always return to the diet plan as an element of my day-to-day routine. I find that I can easily lose the several extra few pounds that I put on throughout the holidays within around two weeks of establishing the keto diet again. I suppose it can help i love the type of food I become to enjoy by using this regimen. Lots of the foods I like are very high in protein and fat. I actually do miss carbohydrate-rich foods including pizza and pasta but I think eyzknn loss is outweighed (sic) by the main benefit of being able to each rich food and still keep my weight manageable. It is going without stating that We have to avoid sugary foods however i don’t have much of a sweet tooth and i also can still enjoy things like good dark chocolate, sparingly.
It’s difficult, if you are just beginning trying to find a diet which works for you, to know where the truth lies within this debate; if the scientists can’t sort it all out then how are you going to? The plain truth is that you’ll have to educate yourself, weigh the arguments, then follow your personal best judgement. My experience continues to be largely positive however you will, without doubt, have heard of friends having problems on low carbohydrate diets for starters reason or any other. There is absolutely no such thing as being a miracle diet and most of them are just variations over a theme but all ketogenic-type diets are based upon a really specific principle and that principle has been demonstrated to induce weight loss in many people. Perhaps you should try to base your opinion on the available evidence and never on anecdotes. It’s your system along with your health, all things considered.