12/21/2009 - Questions and Answers

Atkins diet

By: Mark Castleden

Atkins diet


I have heard a lot about the Atkins diet lately, and wondered what you thought about it. I used it to lose weight and I feel really great. My cholesterol did go up a bit, but I'm 72 years old and don't have a history of heart problems.


The Atkins diet is very popular in the USA. We would not wish to criticise it, except to say that there are differences in opinion amongst dieticians about the best way of losing weight long term. The Atkins diet is high in protein, high in fat and low in carbohydrate as we understand it. Now most people have sufficient protein anyway in the Western world, and therefore do not need the protein for the protein's sake. Also, a diet high in animal proteins will have a high lipid content. It is possible that this could give rise to problems in the long term and you do mention that your cholesterol went up a bit, which may or may not have been due to the diet.

An alternative way of losing weight is to have a diet which is calorie deficient, and therefore a diet based on carbohydrate, which is exactly the opposite way to the Atkins diet. In such a diet, one would restrict the fat and sucrose and try to minimise animal protein, which has a large fat content.

Overall, we feel sure that no diet is going to give you any problem in the short term and you have lost a large amount of weight on the Atkins diet, which must indicate a successful outcome. But if you intend to continue any diet long term, you need to discuss your nutritional requirements with a dietician.


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Created on: 04/26/2000
Reviewed on: 12/21/2009

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Anonymous wrote 2 years 5 weeks ago

My dad and brother both tried the atkins diet it worked for my dad but not for my brother.