Skip To Main Content

How to Start the Atkins® Diet


Starting the Atkins Diet is a fantastic way to improve your eating habits, lose weight, and feel amazing. And if you’re reading this, you’re already one step closer to beginning your Atkins journey on the right track! But before you dive in, check out the following tips for how to start a diet in a healthy way that will be most conducive to accomplishing your weight loss goals.

8 Tips on How to Start a Low Carb Diet

1. Set goals. Setting achievable, healthy goals before you begin your diet is an important part of a successful Atkins program. Keeping your big-picture goals in mind while you lose weight will motivate you to stay on track and provide you with something to work toward. You can even write your goals down and keep them in a visible place in your home as a positive reminder.

2. Determine which Atkins Plan is right for you. Answer a few simple questions to customize your Atkins program to match your goals. If you decide Atkins 20® is the right plan for you, you will begin with Phase 1: Induction. The purpose of Induction is to kick start weight loss by shifting your body’s metabolism from primarily burning carbs to primarily burning fat. In this phase, your aim is to set your net carb intake to 20 grams per day, the average level at which people primarily burn fat.

If you determine that the Atkins 40® plan is the best fit for you, you will start out eating 40 grams of net carbs a day. With each of the Atkins programs, as you approach your weight loss goals, you will increase your daily net carb intake to maintain your momentum.

3. Familiarize yourself with approved foods Each phase of Atkins has its own list of approved foods. So before you start your diet, make sure to read through Atkins list of approved foods for Phase 1 or approved foods for Atkins 40. By familiarizing yourself with these lists, you will be more likely to stay on track with your daily net carb goals without a second thought. You can also keep track of your daily net carbs with the Atkins Carb Counter.

4. Plan your meals with Atkins-approved recipes Meal planning is a great way to save time throughout the week and ensure you are not exceeding your daily net carb goals. Check out over 1,600 recipes (organized by phase!) for meal ideas, then plan your grocery shopping accordingly. When you're excited about the meals you'll be cooking, it will be easier to stick to the approved foods without feeling like you’re missing out on anything.

5. Stay hydrated. Drink up! Staying properly hydrated is especially important to avoid dehydration or electrolyte imbalances that may accompany the initial loss of water weight during Phase 1. Aim to drink at least eight 8-ounce glasses of water each day, four of which can be replaced with coffee, tea, or beef, chicken, and vegetable broth.

6. Don’t avoid fats Consuming fat might sound counterproductive to weight loss, but healthy fat consumption is a crucial part of losing weight on Atkins. Plus, consuming enough fat in your diet allows your body to better absorb vitamins that keep you healthy, and even heightens the flavor of foods so you'll enjoy them more!

7. Snack frequently. Snacks aren't just allowed on the Atkins diet, they're encouraged! Eating two snacks a day in between breakfast, lunch, and dinner will help you stay full throughout the day and fight high-carb cravings. Keep Atkins bars on hand to satisfy hunger when it strikes.

8. Surround yourself with support and motivation Whether you're starting the Atkins Diet with friends, family, or posting in one of the Atkins community groups, it's important to find ways to hold yourself accountable and stay motivated. Reaching your weight loss goals is easier when you surround yourself with people who support you and your low carb lifestyle!

Ready to get started? Register with Atkins today for more tips and free resources to help you succeed in achieving your healthy weight.

Tips for Begginers