You’ve probably heard plenty concerning the Atkins Diet over time. You know, that incredibly popular and controversial diet which involves cutting right down on the carbohydrate intake. You may have also heard about “ketogenic diets” – it’s a more scientific term so you may not recognise it. Did you realise that the Atkins Diet is a form of ketogenic diet? In the following paragraphs we will have a brief look at what the term means and my experience of this kind of diet.
The Atkins Diet
The first Atkins Diet book, Dr. Atkins’ Diet Revolution, was introduced in 1972. Dr Robert Atkins was interested, amongst other things, to get his own weight under control. Primarily using self-experimentation techniques he found that eating an eating plan really low in carbohydrates tended to create him lose weight quickly. His experimentation was dependant on other research papers and, because of his own studies, he became certain that the science behind the diet was sound. The resulting book was a resounding success and, over the next 3 decades up to his death in 2003, Robert Atkins continued to produce popular diet books based on the low-carbohydrate principle.
Some would debate that only the first “phase” in the Atkins Eating habits are “ketogenic” but it’s very clear that this element is central for the whole diet. There are lots of other diets of this type with various names and claims but, when they speak about severely restricting the consumption of carbohydrates, then they’re probably kinds of ketogenic diet. The process of “ketosis” is quite complicated and would take the time to illustrate but, basically, it works because cutting down on carbs restricts the quantity of blood glucose levels accessible to trigger the “insulin response”. Without a triggering in the glucose-insulin response some hormonal changes happen which cause the body to begin burning its stores of fat as energy. This also has got the interesting effect of causing your brain to be fuelled with what are known as “ketone bodies” (hence “ketogenic”) rather than the usual glucose. The complete process is actually quite fascinating and I recommend that you read on it.
All types of ketogenic diet are controversial. A lot of the debate surrounds the problem of cholesterol and whether ketogenic diets increase or reduce the levels HDL “good” cholesterol or increase or decrease LDL “bad” cholesterol. The amount of research studies is increasing year on year which is certainly possible to point to strong cases on sides from the argument. My conclusion (and also this is just my opinion) is the fact one could equally have the case which a carbohydrate-laden diet has adverse reactions on cholesterol and i believe that, on balance, a ketogenic-type weight loss program is healthier than a carbohydrate-heavy one. Interestingly, there isn’t so much controversy about whether ketogenic diets work or not (it’s widely accepted they do); it’s mostly regarding how they work and whether which is good/bad/indifferent from the health perspective.
I too am a bit of a self-experimenter. I know this approach isn’t for everyone and it also does carry an component of risk. I’ve experimented having a ketogenic diet for approximately eight years now. I sometimes lapse, mostly during holidays, however i always come back to the diet as part of my day-to-day routine. I discover that I can easily lose the several extra pounds which i placed on through the holidays within around fourteen days of establishing the keto diet again. I suppose it can help i absolutely love the type of food I become to consume by using this regimen. Many of the foods I like are usually high in protein and fat. I really do miss carbohydrate-rich foods like pizza and pasta however i think eyzknn loss is outweighed (sic) by the main benefit of having the ability to each rich food and still keep my weight in check. It goes without proclaiming that We have to prevent sugary foods however i don’t have a great deal of sweet tooth and that i can still enjoy things like good dark chocolate, in moderation.
It’s difficult, should you be just getting started trying to find a diet which works for you, to know in which the truth lies within this debate; when the scientists can’t sort it out then how would you like to? The plain facts are that you’ll need to become knowledgeable, weigh up the arguments, then follow your own best judgement. My experience has been largely positive however, you will, without doubt, have often heard of friends having troubles on low carbohydrate diets for starters reason or another. There is no such thing as a miracle diet and most of them are just variations over a theme but all ketogenic-type diets are based on an extremely specific principle which principle has been demonstrated to induce weight reduction in numerous people. Perhaps try to base your opinion on the available evidence and never on anecdotes. It’s your system as well as your health, after all.