The Atkins Diet is legendary. It is one of the few diets that caused a kind of mass hysteria. Food manufacturers lined up to bring new lines of low-carb food, and everyone was talking about Atkins.
Dr Robert Atkins passed away in 2003, and since then the super-fad of Atkins has slowly ebbed away. This hasn’t stopped numerous versions of the Atkins diet appearing on the shelves.
In between these dates a myriad of variations on the low-carb theme have appeared.
New Atkins for a New You
Finally, we have The New Atkins for A New You by Dr Eric Westman.
While it seems odd to keep calling the same diet “new” — it demonstrates that nutrition is a field that is constantly changing as new research comes to hand.
What’s so “New” About It”
One of the biggest criticisms of the original was the allowance of large amounts of saturated fats.
People were losing weight, but many had out of control blood lipid levels in the process.
The new atkins diet still promotes eating a high percentage of fats in the diet to promote ketosis, but it now stresses the importance of eating healthy fats.
Saturated fat isn’t cut out completely, but “Atkinites” are instructed to consume fats like olive oil, omega 3 rich oils, while to avoid trans fat.
Exercise guidelines have also changed a bit. In the past many dieters complained about being weak and light headed during exercise while on Atkins.
Now dieters are instructed to increase their daily net carb intake as their exercise levels increase to avoid potential undesired symptoms.
The latest Atkins revision includes information from over 80 references that make up the body of research undertaken in the field of low-carbohydrate diets.
While the new Atkins diet seems like a healthier approach to low carb dieting it still has some drawbacks.
I think the biggest is the addition and promotion of their huge line of processed food products with everything from frozen meals and snack bars to desserts.
Notice that their pyramid doesn’t show a single processed product, but their website and retails stores are full of Atkins Advantage products.
I understand that they are trying to make money, but there seems to be a bit of a double standard.
Low carb diets will always have their place, and there is ample evidence to show that a restricted carbohydrate approach leads to weight loss.
However, it seems that (like many restrictive diets) the fall-off rate is high. It’s hard to stick to, and long-term results are varied.