High Protein Low Carb Diet


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High Protein Low Carb Diet

Think high protein and low carbohydrates and generally the first thing that comes to mind is the Atkins diet. Though Atkins had the right idea, it is a highly restrictive diet and some people are just unable to sustain it. There are other options out there that fall into this category.

How High Protein, Low Carbohydrate Diets Work

This type of diet severely limits the intake of carbohydrates. Since carbohydrates are the primary source of energy for the body, the body must then find its fuel from another source. When the body enters a state called ketosis, the ultimate goal of the induction phase of Atkins, it begins to burn its own fat stores for energy. Another benefit of ketosis is that it quells hunger. Between the two effects of this diet, weight loss occurs. When eating this way it is essential to know what good carbohydrates are versus bad carbohydrates.

Good Carbohydrates versus Bad Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates, as a whole, have gotten a bum rap over the last several years, and much of it has to do with the perception of them through the high protein/low carbohydrate diets. It is important to pay attention to the carbohydrates eaten. Not all are bad, and some are particularly beneficial and can aid in weight loss. Bad carbohydrates consist of anything that is refined. This includes sugar powdered and granulated, flour, white rice, white pasta and artificial syrups. Good carbohydrates are more complex in nature, and often they are called complex carbohydrates. Many are naturally sweetened and, in most cases, contain fiber that helps slow digestion making the body feel fuller longer. Good carbohydrates include fruits and vegetables, whole grains, legumes and nuts.

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What about Protein?

Protein should always be a staple of any diet and, like carbohydrates, there are good proteins and bad ones. Most people are pretty well versed on lean meat and their benefit over fattier meat. Lean meats include chicken, turkey and fish. Serving sizes also make a difference. 12 oz cuts of meat, no matter how lean, just are not very healthy. If the serving size is roughly the same size as the palm of your hand, then chances are it is the correct serving size.

What High Protein/Low Carbohydrate Diets are Out There?

The Schwarzbein Principle: This diet is a two stage diet and very similar in nature to the Atkins diet. This diet focuses on the relationship between carbohydrates and insulin levels in the body, and Schwarzbein bases some of her strategies on the glycemic index.

The Zone Diet: Sometimes called the 40:30:30 diet. Some consider this the perfect ratio of carbohydrates, fats and protein. The criticism surrounding this diet is that it is too difficult to follow.

The South Beach Diet: This is extremely similar to the Atkins diet, but it is considered to be more nutritionally complete and easier to follow. There are three stages as in Atkins, but they are not as restrictive as Atkins. Emphasis is on nutritional foods.

Overall, these diets bring a lot of success, but some are healthier than others. These diets need to become a way of life in order for the dieter to succeed in long term weight control.

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