veggies.jpg (6769 bytes)fruitbowl.jpg (6391 bytes)THE SKINNY ON ATKINS

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We began this archive as a means of assisting our visitors in answering many of their health and diet questions, and in encouraging them to take a pro-active part in their own health.  We believe the articles and information contained herein are true, but are not presenting them as advice.  We, personally, have found that a whole food vegan diet has helped our own health, and simply wish to share with others the things we have found.   Each of us must make our own decisions, for it's our own body.  If you have a health problem, see your own physician.

By Michael Greger, M.D.

The Answers are No and No

There seem to be two Atkins Diets: one that he describes in his books (particularly in later editions), and the one the public thinks he describes in his books. How many Atkins Dieters, for example, only eat free-range organic bacon? This may be one of the reasons why we havenít seen even higher rates of serious side effectsóso few people may be actually following the diet.

A recent study of 11,000 people found that only one in four of those claiming to be on a low carb diet were actually significantly cutting carbs at all.[443] Another survey, commissioned by former Surgeon General C. Everett Koopís organization Shape Up America!, found that most people claiming to be on Atkins, or another of the low carb fad diets, didnít seem to even know where carbs were found.[444] Most didnít know, for example, that tomatoes were high in carbs. Thankfully, about half of them didnít know apples had a lot of carbs, and 1 in 6 even thought steak was a carbohydrate.[445] Thankfully most people on Atkins are actually not on Atkins.

Despite the softening of his stance on whole grains and many vegetables, Atkins still made saturated fat-laden meat and dairy the centerpiece of his diet. The Atkins Diet therefore remains dangerous even when "used as directed."

Isnít it possible to do the Atkins Diet healthfully, though? Isnít there some way to modify it to make if safer? Those exact questions were asked of the editors at the Tufts University Health and Nutrition Letter by one of the Universityís Vice Presidents.

After trying their best, the editorial staff at the Tufts Letter couldnít help but conclude, "So, as to whether itís possible to follow the Atkins Diet healthfully or tweak it to make it safe and healthful, the answers are no and no" (emphasis in original).[446]

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