lengthen thy life, lessen thy meals"
With many scientists and researchers
unhappy with the food pyramid, a new wave of diets has emerged, promising
weight loss immediately. Diets like Sugar Busters!, Protein Power, The
Zone and the Dr. Atkins New Diet Revolution have swept Americans off
their feet and into the bookstore, where they can buy books guaranteeing
them a better body in no time. Here, I’ll share two of the most
popularized diets on TV and the internet: The Zone and The Atkins Diet.
What principles do these diets use, and what are some risks that dieters
face when they start?
Sears, founder of the Zone diet, says that the ideal ratio of carbohydrates
to proteins to fats is 40-30-30. And each time you eat a meal or snack,
that ratio should be incorporated. The four key parts of the Zone diet
are: the Zone diet, the use of monosaturated fats (nuts, olive oil),
supplementation of diet with Omega-3 fatty acids (found in fish like
tuna and salmon or in capsules), and exercise.
in the Zone diet is pretty easy once you learn the eyeball method. For
example, it’s dinnertime and you want to have some chicken with
pasta or broccoli. The portion of the protein (chicken) should be the
size of your palm. The portion of the carbohydrate you want depends
on if it is favorable or unfavorable. A portion of unfavorable carbs,
like pasta, should only be the size of a tight fist. A portion of favorable
carbs, like broccoli, can be the size of two closed fists.
fat is also important to include in your diet, and Dr. Sears recommends
adding either a few nuts, olives, or olive oil to your meals to get
in some good monosaturated fat.
the Zone Diet, you eat five times a day: three meals and two snacks.
And you shouldn’t eat more than five hours apart.
Like the Atkins Diet, the Zone
is another high-protein, low-carb diet. You will lose weight from the
restricted amount of calories you’ll be eating; not from eating
in the “zone,” says Dr. Michael McCoy. You also won’t
be able to exercise as much, because you won’t have much energy
being on a 1,300 calorie diet (for a woman). You won’t be able
to eat out at restaurants if you are adhering to the diet, and there
are health risks associated with consuming too much protein.
Atkins approach, like the Zone Diet, focuses on four principles as
well. However, the foundation of this diet is that carbs are bad for
you, protein is good for you.
first step is induction, where you limit your carbohydrate
intake to only 20 grams per day (these carbs come from salad and
second phase in Ongoing Weight Loss. You add carbs
to your diet increasing to 25 grams daily in the first week, 30
g daily next week, etc, until you stop losing weight. Then, subtract
5 g of carbs from your daily intake so that you continue moderate
The third phase is Pre-Maintenance, where you make
the transition from weight loss to weight maintenance by increasing
daily carb intake in 10gram increments each week, as long as gradual
weight loss in maintained.
fourth phase is Lifetime maintenance, where you basically
keep controlling your carb intake for the rest of your life.
like Dr. David E. Norwood writes in an article about the dangers of
the Atkins diet. Because of the severe restriction of carbohydrates,
a person will lack fiber, which can cause gastrointestinal problems
like constipation. Also, the high protein diet is high in cholesterol
and saturated fat. This can lead to heart disease, kidney damage and
possibly some cancers, Dr. Norwood warns. Because you are depleting
the body’s primary source of energy, carbohydrates, the person
will feel fatigued and incur a loss of energy. The Atkins diet also
does not promote learning about portion control or serving sizes, so
the person does not develop any healthy eating habits.
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The Family Health Administration's
If you don't follow your diet exactly as planned for a meal or two, don't
sweat it. Just get back on the train the next day.
Eat in moderation. You can enjoy most of the foods you want, if you keep
the portions under control. For example, have a dish of ice cream, not
the whole gallon.
Get outside, find a gym, take your pet for a walk. Even exercising
for only a half-hour is better than nothing.
You won't drop 10 pounds the first week, so don't get discouraged.
Set smaller, attainable goals for yourself, like "I want to be able
to jog two miles without stopping."
Low-fat doesn't necessarily mean disgusting. Experiment with different
foods. Don't like broccoli? Sprinkle some reduced-fat cheddar on top.
Sick of plain old fruit? Try a tasty smoothie.
Bookmark these sites as they will come in handy as you continue with
your weight-loss plan!
Facts & Tips