The Atkins diet has become one of the most popular diets around the country. Many people claim to have lost tremendous amounts of weight while on the diet as well as many other great health benefits. So, what exactly is it and is it for you? Read on for more information about the diet to help you decide if the Atkins diet is the right option for you.
First, it is important to understand that the Atkins diet is based on a low-car, high protein diet principle. This means that you’ll need to cut out all of those pre-packaged foods such as chips, sodas, cookies and convenience meals that make life so tasty and convenient. Instead, most people on the Atkins diet load up on lots of meat.
The principle behind the Atkins diet teaches that when you reduce your carbohydrate intake your body begins to burn fat as fuel. As a benefit, this effects your body’s production of insulin which will then allow you to lower your blood sugar and prevent your body from creating more fat.
There are actually four phases of the Atkins diet. These phases are known as induction, ongoing weight loss, pre-maintenance and maintenance. The induction phase lasts for two weeks, during which period you may lose up to 15 pounds, while keeping your daily intake of carbs to 20 grams or less per day. Dieters in this phase of the diet are limited to low-carb vegetables such as tomatoes, broccoli and lettuce. Foods that contain high amounts of starch and carbs are strictly taboo, such as potatoes and even fruit. Coffee, and sodas are out as well. After this period, you enter the ongoing weight loss phase. Daily carb intake can be increased by five grams for this phase. Once you have hit a plateau, it may be necessary to cut back once again until you begin losing weight again.
After this phase dieters enter the pre-maintenance phase, where weight loss is achieved more slowly. The goal of this phase is to allow dieters to give certain foods a test run to find out whether they can safely reintroduce them into their diet without gaining back weight. It is important to keep in mind that only healthy carbs are encouraged and not bad carbs.
This diet plan is often described as a lifetime diet and weight loss maintenance plan because of the fact that even after you have hit your weight loss goal, you simply can’t go back to eating carbs like you once did. To do so will virtually guarantee you will gain all the weight back.
Avoiding Problems at the Movies
We all know the movie theater can be one of the most dangerous places to be while on a diet. Just the smell of that buttery popcorn can find you half a mile away; how can you resist it when sitting in the aisle seat of your favorite movie and it’s beckoning you?
Fortunately, there are actually several tactics you can utilize in order to avoid blowing your diet at the movies and they don’t involve steering clear of your favorite Cineplex.
Preparation is the best technique you can utilize to avoid having problems the next time you decide to catch a movie. First, understand exactly what kind of dangers you’re facing. Not only is there a staggering array of food and snack options but most of them are in the King size variety; which means that most of them are the equivalent to two regular size products. Just a tub of popcorn alone can have more than 1,000 calories; about the same daily caloric limit recommended by many leading diets.
One way to handle temptation is to have a snack before you head to the movies. No, that isn’t an invitation to indulge in forbidden foods but a healthy snack will certainly help to ward off the munchies when you’re sitting in the dim lights with the smell of butter and sugar all around you. Consider options such as fresh, raw veggies and a low-fat dip, low fat cheese and crackers, yogurt or fresh fruit slices. All of these options are not only healthy but will prevent your blood sugar from plummeting at a critical time and leaving you susceptible to the munchies.
Another option is to bring your own diet friendly snack with you. Yes, yes; you’re not supposed to do that. The movie theatres don’t allow it, etc, etc. If you have a real ethical objection to it, just have a snack at home ahead of it. Remember; however, that if you bring an oversized purse with you (ladies, of course) the theater attendant won’t ever know the difference. You can enjoy your popcorn and movie in the knowledge that you’re not blowing your diet. The theater isn’t going to go broke over losing out on your six bucks; there will be plenty of other non-diet conscious people to stand in line and shell it out.
Diet friendly snacks you can bring along include snacks approved by your own diet system, pork rinds for those on low-carb diets or any other variety of low-cal, low-fat snack you can stow in your pocket or purse.