Diets in Review - Find the Right Diet for You

low carb diet



10 Surprising Sources of Vegetarian Protein and How Much You Need

Protein may have gotten a bad rap in more recent years due to low-carb, high-protein diets. Some of those diets boasted that you could eat all the bacon, sausage, or steak you wanted and still lose weight. We now look at that behavior as wildly unhealthy. In fact, earlier this summer research published suggesting that low-carb diets are linked to heart disease. Protein is actually a very valuable nutrient, you should just be sure to recognize the difference between a healthy lean protein and a processed or fatty animal source.

Protein is an essential nutrient and many of us are not getting enough healthy protein in our diets. As well, our sources of protein aren’t nearly as diversified in our diets as they could be.

Why is protein so important? Madelyn Fernstrom is a TODAY contributor and the director of the Weight Management Center at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. She has explained that protein is one of the big three macronutrients; carbohydrates and fats are the other two. Protein is essential for maintaining the body’s muscle mass and its normal growth. Furthermore, protein is vital in maintaining a healthy immune system, cardiovascular system, and respiratory system.
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The Re-Feed Diet: I’ll Have a Stack of Pancakes with Extra Syrup Please

In today’s world there are thousands of different diets available, each having its own purpose. Everywhere you look you’ll see magazines and books boasting the new “it diet” and how to get a six pack in six weeks. So how do you know which diet’s right for you? Find one that identifies with your needs and goals. That’s what I’ve been doing for the past five weeks.

Several weeks ago I started hearing about this new diet bodybuilders are using to prepare for their next competition. It’s called the Re-Feed Diet. Its goal: to build muscle while maintaining and improving leanness at the same time. Sounds like an oxymoron right? Keep reading and things might start making sense.

The concept is similar to that of a “cheat day” only the re-feed has more construction. When you’re on a low-calorie diet your metabolism will eventually begin to drop. When this happens there are multiple negative consequences. Weight loss slows, your body feels weak and fatigued and you begin feeling lethargic. No wonder so many people give up after reaching this stage in a diet. In order to avoid these disasters, you might consider incorporating a re-feed into your diet. To be straight to the point, you get to eat A LOT of food one day a week.


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Low-Carb Diets Were too Good to be True; New Link to Heart Disease

When it seemed too good to be true, we should have really done our research. Now that the and the low-carb fad have more or less passed, the effects of those diets are being seen and the results are not pretty.

One research study recently published in the British Medical Journal is linking women’s heart disease risks to the trendy low-carb and high-protein diets that were so popular in the late 90s and early 2000s.

Unfortunately, while the trend and the products that were marketed during that time have more or less passed away, the notion that carbs are bad have lingered. Many people, and especially women, are still found to be eating a high protein and low-carb diet and completely confused by carbs.

Researchers in Greece focused in on a group of these women and followed them for the last 15 years. The end result was not pretty. Among the women who consumed the least amount of carbs and the most protein, incidence of cardiovascular disease was 62% higher than the women who weren’t regularly eating a low-carb, high-protein diet.
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Mediterranean Diet More Likely to Keep Weight Off Than Other Diets

Researchers at Boston Children’s Hospital have dubbed the low-glycemic index, similar to the Mediterranean Diet, as the best diet to keep off weight without causing harmful side effects. The study was lead by Cara Ebbeling who tested three different diets. The low-fat, low-carb, and low-glycemic index diet were test by 21 participants who are overweight or obese.

Overview of Calories per Diet

Low Fat: 60% of calories are carbohydrates, 20% of calories are protein, and 20% of calories are fat. The foods included in the diet are whole grains, fruits, and vegetables. The low-fat diet reduces the amount of fatty meats, oils, nuts, and other fat products.

Low Carb (Atkins Diet): 10% of calories are carbs, 30% of calories are protein, and 60% of calories are from protein. Types foods included in the diet are little to no carbohydrates, high amounts of beef, chicken, eggs, cheese, and there are some fruits and vegetables in the diet plan.

Low-Glycemic Index Diet (Mediterranean Diet): 40% of calories are carbs, 40% of calories are fat, 20% of calories are from protein. The foods in the diet are whole grains, low fat meats, fruits, vegetables, beans, and healthy fats from olive oil and nuts.
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South Beach Diet vs. South Beach Diet Supercharged

Together, The South Beach Diet and South Beach Diet Supercharged boast of helping millions lose weight and live happier, healthier lives. The South Beach Diet swept the nation in 2003 when the book of the same name was first published by the diet’s creator, Dr. Arthur Agatston. In 2008, the South Beach Diet Supercharged came on the scene. The titles do not work independently; rather, Supercharged is the revised version of the original.

They both have as their core a high-protein, low-carb diet that also restricts saturated fats. The diet works in phases, with each phase geared toward a different goal.

  • Phase 1 is fairly restrictive, but its aim is to eliminate cravings and promote rapid weight loss. Sugars and starches (like bread, pasta, and fruit) are eliminated.
  • Phase 2 reintroduces certain foods while still aiming for patients to lose weight.
  • Phase 3 is the maintenance phase, in which patients are encouraged to keep practicing healthy eating principles for life but may eat most foods in moderation.
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