The weight loss with the Atkins diet occurs predominately through a process called ketosis. Ketosis is the presence in the blood of substances called ketones. Ketones are produced when there isn’t enough glucose in the bloodstream, and fats have to be used. When fats are used excessively as fuels, they are eventually converted to ketones.
Certainly in the early stage of the Atkins Diet, this is the case. Slowly as more and more carbohydrates are added, Ketosis may stop but carbohydrates are still quite low during this stage of the Atkins Diet.
Here is a summary of the of the Akins Diet:
Phase 1: Induction phase of Atkins Diet
Restrict consumption to 20 grams each day, obtaining carbohydrate primarily from salad and other non-starchy vegetables.
Phase 2: Ongoing Weight Loss (OWL) of Atkins Diet
Add carbohydrate, in the form of nutrient-dense and antioxidant rich foods, by increasing to 25 grams daily the first week, 30 grams daily the next week and so on until weight loss stops. Then subtract 5 grams of carbohydrate from your daily intake so that you continue sustained, moderate weight loss.
Phase 3: Pre-Maintenance stage of Atkins Diet
Make the transition from weight loss to weight maintenance by increasing the daily carbohydrate intake in 10-gram increments each week so long as very gradual weight loss is maintained.
Phase 4: Lifetime Maintenance of Atkins Diet
Select from a wide variety of foods while controlling carbohydrate intake to ensure weight maintenance and a sense of well being. The Atkins diet maintains this lifestyle is the foundation for a lifetime of better health.
Originally, I was quite against the Atkins Diet; however, a naturopath and I were discussing it and she mentioned that the Atkins Diet may be good for some people who need to really lose weight. Once the weight is off they could move to a healthier diet. This suggestion made sense to me and I did want to lose weight, so I did some reading and decided to give it a try. I did in fact lose weight and found that a lot of meals were quite satisfying as I could eat generous portions of meats.
After a while, I was tiring of all the meat, and eating this much meat was counterintuitive to me. While vegetables are allowed on the diet, I don’t feel the Atkins Diet emphasizes them enough. I feel that vegetables should form a large portion of one’s diet. So, while I did lose weight and was eating pretty good portions, I just didn’t feel the Atkins diet was balanced enough, not enough carbs and vegetables.