When it comes to weigh-loss diets, you’ve probably heard about them all. And you’ve maybe even tried quite a few in your quest to lose weight. Low-carb, high-protein, low-fat, low-sodium, low-calorie, fasts, cleanses, juices, cookies, points and more. The list goes on. Of course, I will be quick to point out that a low-carb diet like Atkins has over 80 studies showing it to be quite effective in helping you lose weight and cut or eliminate your risk of a variety of health issues, including insulin resistance, pre-diabetes, diabetes and heart disease. While some experts agree that there is not a “one-size-fits-all” diet, but that it depends on the person and their age, activity level, health issues and more, as well as whether this is a way of eating someone can stick with for the long haul, there are some things that most effective weight-loss diets do have in common:
Limit added sugar. If you’re familiar with Atkins, you know that added sugars can be found in some surprising places: sauces, juices and salad dressings just to name a few.
Avoid refined grains. White bread, white rice and packaged and processed foods all contain sugar and many unnecessary and sometimes unnatural ingredients. You might as well consider these empty calories that do nothing for your blood sugar levels, waistline or health. As you learned in my last blog, our bodies are built to only circulate the equivalent of only two teaspoons of sugar but eating a bagel has the same effect on your blood sugar as eating seven teaspoons of sugar and a cup of white rice has the same effect on your blood sugar as eating more than eleven teaspoons of sugar.
Fill up with vegetables. On Atkins, vegetables are a part of every meal. They are excellent sources of nutrients and fiber.
Focus on food, not calories. Yes, in order to lose weight, you should reduce the calories you are eating, but if you are eating foods that naturally satisfy your appetite and control your hunger, you’re more likely to eat fewer calories without even realizing it.
No matter what diet you choose, what is most important is developing sustainable and healthy eating habits. If you’re following Atkins, you’re naturally embracing these four very important weigh-loss principles.