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Atkins - is it for real?

47 replies

lisalisa · 19/08/2004 15:32

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ghengis · 19/08/2004 15:50

I tried this about 6 months ago and found it quite easy to stick to and felt much less bloated however I felt so ill after about 6 days that I gave it up. I am very tempted to give it a go again though. Will look forward to hearing many, many success stories first!

lisalisa · 19/08/2004 16:14

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allthegirls · 19/08/2004 16:42

I did the Atkins diet for 2 weeks and lost 12lb. I found it quite difficult to stick to as I love potatoe. I didn't feel ill at all actually I was the opposite. I got loads of energy!! I lost my appetite aswell which is amazing for me!! Not completley but it was much less. I am going to try again! I am going on holiday in October so want to lose some weight again.

I don't know whether I could stick to this as a main diet( i never got to the maintenance stage of the book) but it certainly is a quick fix for me!!

Furball · 19/08/2004 16:56

Tried it a few years ago. I only did the 2 week induction, before my MIL (a nurse) nearly had a heart attack over what I was eating and begged me to stop. I really don't see the problem with it medically for a short term thing. It just makes your body behave differently and you end up burning your fat as fuel rather than the carbs. I know you can eat more carbs after the two week induction. But yes you can eat cheese, cream, fry ups etc, but what about fruit? bread? potatoes? rice? pasta? could you really go a month or longer without eating them, in return for fried eggs and smoked salmon everyday? I know you say you've tried SW (and so have I, and failed ) but the SW does offer you more variety, you CAN have eggs and smoked salmon for breakfast everyday on a red day, but you can also have a bit of pasta with your bolognese or a sandwich for your lunch.

I suppose the only way to find out, is to give it a go, if you google ATKINS, you'll get loads of ideas for low carb cooking, if you get on with it fine, if you don't, well, you'll have to look for another one.


(says she, who is starting the 'Southbeach' diet, next week, after the Mumsnet summer party of course!)

lisalisa · 19/08/2004 17:19

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MrsDoolittle · 19/08/2004 17:30

The whole Atkins thing doesn't sit well with me atall I am afraid but I couldn't convince my parents. They started it last September. A huge cheese, cream and butter Atkins was the only way my Mum could convince Dad to diet, who also happens to be a type 2 diabetic. Between them they have lost LOADS of weight - two stone each and they both look great, they also seem to have alot more energy. They are still sticking to the almost no carbs thing, eating mainly meat and salad stuff and some vegetables and they it's not hard. Personally I don't like meat very much and would struggle to fill up on it. Recent research has shown that it is the protein that actually curbs the appetite not fat.
The real success of Atkins is for people with diabetes. My Dad has reduced his tablets and I recently met a type one diabetic who had halved her insulin intake as result, she was so much healthier.
Personally, I think there is no doubt you can lose weight on the Atkins diet but it's not balanced. I can't get my head around the fact all that saturated fat can be healthy. Why can't we eat reasonably and eat some carbs and some fat, instaed of too much of one or the other?

could convince my

MrsDoolittle · 19/08/2004 17:31

Don't know what happened there!!

hoxtonchick · 19/08/2004 20:02

MrsDoolittle, I have diabetes & need to lose weight but I wouldn't touch Atkins with a bargepole. It puts serious stress on your kidneys which are somewhat vulnerable in people with diabetes in the first place. As far as I understand, following the Atkins diet means that your body goes into ketosis, burning fat rather than carbohydrate. Ketosis is also a problem in diabetes, potentially very serious & is one of the main causes of admission to hospital for people with diabetes. So it really scares me that this is the aim of the diet. I'm pleased that your dad has lost weight, but I hope he's talked to his diabetes team about it.

Hope I haven't come on too strong, you said you didn't like the idea of the diet either.

Furball · 20/08/2004 14:36

Hoxtonchick - Thats the problem my MIL had with it, as a nurse all the info to her was completely alarming, as she often had patients in with ketosis and it was classed as serious.

hoxtonchick · 20/08/2004 15:45

Glad I'm not completely out on a limb Furball!

jasper · 21/08/2004 02:39

Atkins works a treat. I did it for about 4 months and lost 22 pounds.

I ate a TON of permitted foodstuffs. Don't let anyone try to tell you it works by indirectly restricting calories!
BUT I found it hard to have a social life and stick to the plan. Read the book from cover to cover before doing it if you think it will work for you.
My sister, a doctor (and a skeptic) monitored a bunch of her fat patients on Atkins . All the measureable markers for health (cholesterol etc)were improved in all patients.

I have personally found following weightwatchers to be more helpful for me in the long run but still believe Atkins is a great diet for some.

SoupDragon · 21/08/2004 11:50

The misconception about Atkins is that you drop all carbs for ever. This is only true of the initial period where carbs are strictly limited. After this period (2 weeks? Can't remember) you reintroduce them until you find a stable level. I think it's this initial period that people focus on and that get reported andt his does seem unbelievable unhealthy - it probably is but you're not meant to stay at this level for more than the 2 weeks. There are far worse diets out there!!

I lost 10lbs just by keeping to Atkins for my evening meal because DH was doing it. (I did lose quite a bit before starting it through being ill over Christmas but none of it has gone back on).

I'm not an Atkins fanatic but DH read the book from cover to cover and lost lots of weight. Now we tend to just stick to a carb-free evening meal and he'll avoid things like potatoes.

jac34 · 21/08/2004 12:07

I went on the Atkins diet in May and lost a stone before going on holiday in June.
I didn't do it while away but tried no to over do the carbs, and didn't put any back on.
I had lost another 1/2 a stone when the kids broke up from school for the summer, but have not been doing it since as I'm out with them all the time and eating out.
I was a size 18-20, but now am a 12-14, two weeks ago I bought my first size 12 jeans in about 6 years, and feel great.
I also joined a gym in May when I started and walk to work(2 miles), on the three days I work.
When the boys go back to school in September, I'll start on the diet again as I'd like to get down to a size 10, which is not too thin for me ,as I'm only 5f1.
I find it very easy and I love lots of cheeses and deli meats, the only boaring bit is breakfast, as I've gone off fry ups completely, and sometimes can't even look at an egg.

moomina · 21/08/2004 12:18

I agree with Soupy - the bad press about Atkins tends to come from the misconception that you completely cut out all carbs forever and just eat mountains of butter instead, which is rubbish. It makes for good Daily Mail double-page spreads, though...

It is strict for the first two weeks but then relaxes quite considerably and you are meant to find your own level of carb intake - i.e. eat as many carbs as you can without regaining the weight. And tbh I think the idea of cutting out refined carbs (i.e. white bread) and sugars is common sense anyway.

It could be harmful if taken to extremes, but the same could be said for any diet. There's nothing healthy about living on cabbage soup either... The only thing I don't like about Atkins is that it does tend to dismiss the importance of exercise. So be sensible with it, get some exercise as well and you will probably be very pleasantly surprised!

MrsDoolittle · 21/08/2004 21:21

Errr Hoxtonchick - Sorry I should have added my Dad is a GP!!!!! I kid you not. I also believe that Dr. Atkins himself was a diabetic. Honestly.

hoxtonchick · 21/08/2004 21:24

Well I'm happy for your Dad MrsDoolittle, but I'm still not going near it! Eating less & exercising more seems to be the way forward for me, very low tech.

MrsDoolittle · 21/08/2004 21:25

That's fine - I didn't ask you to do it

hoxtonchick · 21/08/2004 21:27

I wasn't being sarky, really. It's hard to put across tone of voice on here isn't it .

MrsDoolittle · 21/08/2004 21:43

Well as I said I don't approve of Atkins myself. Like you I believe that reducing calorific intake overall i.e carbs and fats plus exercise is the way forward. However, diabetes is a problem where that body is unable to produce any/enough insulin to metabolise carbohydrates properly. So by reducing the quantity of carbohydate (or ommitting initially) the amount of carbohydrate consumed does result in a reduction in the amount of insulin, metformin, glicazide which is no bad thing in itself. I should qualify this by saying "in people who find there blood sugars difficult to control". Anyway, I don't want to sound like a know it all and I am fully aware that many diabetics are the best at controlling their own blood sugar. Both diabetic I speak of had difficulty controlling their own blood sugars.
Please don't take this the wrong way, Hoxtinchick I am only trying to explain where my statements were coming form

hoxtonchick · 21/08/2004 21:47

I think that the controlling blood sugar is key. I have always been very careful about my control, my levels are generally in the normal range. Maybe that's why ketosis scares me so much. But I am glad it's working for your Dad. .

MrsDoolittle · 21/08/2004 21:54

That's great then. We're sorted!

binkie · 21/08/2004 22:05

Since December dh has lost coming up for 3 stone on a combination of an Atkins-type diet & exercise (I think the fact of the combination is crucial). He has a trainer/nutrionist who set out an eating plan for him at the beginning - basics: no alcohol whatsoever, no sugars in any form (so no fruit, & veg only of the cabbage/leek/avocado kind - no potatoes as is obvious, but beyond that no root veg generally, no peas, sweetcorn and so on), lots of protein, not allowed to get hungry - is under orders to eat celery and hazelnuts whenever peckish. It isn't Atkins out of a book though - it's Atkins-type theories as applied by a health professional to dh as an individual.

I'm a professional worrywart, so I've insisted he be checked by our gp at every turn - all of his health indicators are better than they've ever been. No bad breath at all (maybe that's the celery) and the snoring has completely gone!

Only real downsides: recounting of how many km run at how fast is so so boring; and boy is it difficult to think of new things for supper. Silver lining is that he's started doing much more of the cooking.


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lisalisa · 23/08/2004 16:09

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mum2anangel · 08/09/2004 13:58

Hi There

I am a new Mom and I help people lose weight with Herbalife. They are great nutritional products that help you lose around a stone per month AND give you more energy. I have been losing weight since my baby was born 7 weeks ago and I feel great. Even better, I'm not hungry!!

bundle · 08/09/2004 14:06

low fat diets just as effective as atkins

i'm with hoxtonchick on this. no one has looked at the long-term health impact of extended ketosis (as far as i know)

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