There are 4 phases to the Atkins diet, including the approved Atkins diet daily menu. It is important to understand the diet before a person begins it. It is a plan that is very strict, meaning a lot of patience, self-control and discipline. Before any diet plan is begun, it is important to consult a physician and research the diet thoroughly. Knowledge is power, and the likelihood of success on any diet can change when it is understood beforehand.
The Four Phases
1. Phase One: This phase, also known as the induction phase, is very restrictive. A person is not to eat more than 20 grams of carbohydrates in a day. With this phase is an approved vegetable and protein list.
Proteins: Several different types of fish, flounder, and shellfish. Additionally veal, pork, venison, ham, lamb, beef and bacon. Anything processed should be avoided such as cold-cuts, hotdogs and sugar cured meats.
Eggs are considered staple in this diet and can be used as a source of protein, and are popular among Atkins breakfast ideas. Cheese may be added in, but no more than 3-4 oz. daily.
The following have one carb or less:
Alfalfa sprouts, bok choy, celery, iceberg lettuce, artichoke hearts, romaine lettuce, raw broccoli, chives, parsley, endive, chicory greens, radishes, arugula, cauliflower, escarole, radicchio, raw spinach, cucumber, black olives, hearts of palm, and daikon radish.
The following have 1-2 carbs:
Mushrooms, Leeks, swiss chard, sauerkraut, bamboo shoots, zucchini, cooked broccoli, cabbage, rhubarb, eggplant, broccoli rabe, broccoflower, summer squash, and spaghetti squash.
The following have 2-5 carbs:
Avocadoes, fennel, peas, onion, turnips, artichoke, peppers, kale, okra, pumpkin, water chestnuts, asparagus, tomato, green olives, brussel sprouts, jicama, collard greens, and kohlrabi.
2. Phase 2: In this phase, also known as ongoing weight loss (OWL), some variety can be added into the Atkins diet daily menu, and included is small amounts of berries, seeds, yogurt, cottage cheese, selected fruit such as blueberries, and an occasional glass of low carb alcoholic beverage or wine. A person can slowly add in an additional 5-10 net carbs in their daily diet. The same proteins and vegetables approved in phase one are the same for this one.
3. Phase 3: This phase is also known as Pre-Maintenance and should be taken when a person is only about 10-15 pounds off from their desired weight loss goal. In this phase a person can eat all the approved foods from the first 2 phases, and additionally carrots, yams, white potatoes and acorn squash. When adding these back in the diet it should be done slowly and over a period of time to ensure the body adjusts and does not start to gain from it.
4. Phase 4: This phase is the final one, also known as lifetime maintenance. This is where one begins their life on a continued healthy diet with their weight under control. It is a lifetime commitment that will lead one to living happier and healthier. A person will maintain the same diet of all approved foods in phases 1 through 3.
Other available products: Atkins sells a wide variety of nutritional bars and shakes that a person can incorporate into their daily diet. The package includes what phase the bars are alright to eat in, and includes all the nutritional information needed for the planning success when eating these products.
This diet has been reported to have a high success rate when followed properly, and completely. Further detailed information regarding this diet can be found online at the Atkins website.
Though the Atkins diet daily menu is restrictive in the beginning, it allows for a person to gain control of their weight well. It is always recommended that before starting any diet that one should talk to their physician. Additionally, it is recommended to take a daily multivitamin while on this diet to ensure the body gets the proper vitamins needed.