The Rules of Induction
This phase of the Atkins Diet must be followed precisely to achieve success. If you do it at all incorrectly, you may prevent weight loss and end up saying, "Here is another diet that didn't work." Stick with the following tips and Atkins will be a low-carb weight loss plan that does work.
1)Eat either three regular-size meals a day or four or five smaller meals. Do not skip meals or go more than six waking hours without eating.
2)Eat liberally a combination of fat and protein in the form of poultry, fish, shellfish, eggs and red meat, as well as pure, natural fat in the form of butter, mayonnaise, olive oil, safflower, sunflower and other vegetable oils (preferably expeller-pressed or cold-pressed)
3)Eat no more than 20 grams a day of carbohydrates, at least 12 – 15 grams of which must come in the form of salad greens and other vegetables. (See Acceptable Foods)
4)Do not eat fruit, bread, pasta, grains, starchy vegetables or dairy products other than cheese, cream or butter. Do not eat nuts or seeds in the first two weeks. Foods that combine protein and carbohydrates, such as chickpeas, kidney beans and other legumes, are not permitted at this time. If you feel you must eat bread or some other grain product, only high fiber low-carb products with 3 grams of Net Carbs or less per serving are allowed, and you can eat only one serving a day. Be aware that even that amount may slow or stall your progress, and if that happens, drop the product immediately.
5)Eat nothing that isn't on the Acceptable Foods list. And that means absolutely nothing. Your "just this one taste won't hurt" rationalization is the kiss of failure during this phase of Atkins.
6)Adjust the quantity you eat to suit your appetite, especially as it decreases. When you're hungry, eat the amount that makes you feel satisfied, but not stuffed. When you're not hungry, eat a small controlled-carbohydrate snack to accompany your nutritional supplements.
7)Don't assume any food is low in carbohydrate—instead, read labels. Check the carb count (it's on every package) or use a carbohydrate gram counter. Be aware that the law allows manufacturers to round off if a product has fewer than 0.5 grams of any carbohydrate, so that will show up as zero. The only way to detect some fractional carbs is to look for them in the ingredients list, where they must be listed if they're added to a product, regardless of the amount.
8)Eat out as often as you wish but be on guard for hidden carbs in gravies, sauces and dressings. Gravy is often made with flour or cornstarch, and sugar is sometimes an ingredient in salad dressing.
9)Use sucralose or saccharin as a sweetener. Be sure to count each packet of any of these as 1 gram of carbs, because of the fillers and bulking agents that are added.
10)Avoid too much coffee, tea and soft drinks that contain caffeine. Excessive caffeine has been shown to cause low blood sugar, which can make you crave sugar.
11)Drink at least eight 8-ounce glasses of water each day in addition to anything else you may drink, to hydrate your body, avoid constipation and flush out the by-products of burning fat.
12)If you are constipated, mix a tablespoon or more of psyllium husks in a cup or more of water and drink daily. Or mix ground flaxseed into a shake or sprinkle wheat bran on a salad or vegetables.
13)At a minimum, take a good daily multivitamin with minerals, including potassium, magnesium and calcium, but without iron.