Advertisement

| |

Home > Diets > Lifestyle Based Diet Navigation    
User Rating

79%

of people who tried this diet like it

Tried it? Rate it!
out of 100
based on 67 reviews

South Beach Diet

Dr. Agaston teaches you how you can get a South Beach body.

QUICK FACTS Start the Diet Now Advertisement
  • Established: 1995
  • Founder: Dr. Arthur Agatston
  • Headquarters: Miami Beach, Florida
  • Accessibility: Online, Books
  • Diet Type: High protein, Low carb
  • Gender: Male and Female
BACKGROUND

If you're looking for a diet plan that has grown wildly popular over the past few years, gives your eating habits a dramatic makeover, and shares the name of one of the world's favorite beaches, then the South Beach Diet is for you. Dr. Arthur Agatston, a cardiologist, created this friendly contrast to other prohibitive weight-loss plans and offers a chance to achieve success where you might have previously failed.

The South Beach Diet differs from its low-carb competitor Atkins, in that it restricts saturated fats, which are linked with health problems like heart disease and high cholesterol. It promises that cravings for sugars, sweets and other carbohydrates will disappear as you go along because the diet is supposed to keep blood sugar levels maintained.

The South Beach Diet has three separate phases in which you'll wean yourself away from certain foods and incorporate other South Beach Diet "friendly" foods. The diet promises that you'll lose 8-12 pounds in the first two weeks as long as you adhere to the guidelines.

PRO
  • The South Beach Diet supports a clean way of eating that is void of refined sugars and trans fats
  • Its emphasis on fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and heart-healthy fats is an eating plan that is full of vitamins, minerals and essential fatty acids
  • Support from the medical science community
  • Thousands of satisfied clients
  • Updated its research in the 2008 release"South Beach Diet: Supercharged"
  • Has a maintenance plan
  • Named #5 in the Best Commercial Diets by US News, 2011
CON
  • Research shows that unless you're diabetic, sugar levels actually remain stable even if you eat a sugary candy bar
  • Many South Beach Diet food products contain sugar-alcohols, which may hard to tolerate
  • Not very vegetarian friendly
  • Its elimination of sugars, certain fruits like bananas and other carbohydrates make it difficult to maintain
  • Science behind Dr. Agatston's assertions about certain foods and their ability to raise blood sugar levels or put on weight is inaccurate
  • Original plan doesn't offer much for exercise guidelines
USER REVIEWS

A sampling of feedback and experiences shared by our community.

I am eating really satisfying food, which is a real treat, and consistently losing weight. Most importantly, Phase 1 has largely eliminated my sugars cravings, and that is a great relief! It's an amazing, healthy food plan. - Arlayna 5/28/11

Unless you are severe obese you are not going to loose as much weigh as the diet promises. I lost 2 pounds in the first week. It is really hard with no carbs at all. The cravings DO NOT go away. It just gets worse. I didn't cheat at all. I have to loose 20 pounds. My cholesterol is high and the dctor suggested the diet. I literally dream with carbs and I think that I would have lost the same with a different diet not soooo restrictive. - Tiredofdiets 2/1/11

A real quick success story. A coworker and I started the plan in February, he 2 weeks before I. As of today I am down 120lbs. He has reached his goal and is down 135lbs. I did not introduce an exercise plan untill I reached my first 100. The first 2 weeks suck, but once you break the cravings, everything becomes routine. - William 10/21/10

This is the healthiest eating plan I've ever seen. Tons of vegetables even in Phase 1, many of which provide vitamin C. There is meat, veggies and fudgesicles from the beginning and the short 2 week elimination of grains and fruit is a challenge the first few days, BUT any change of habit is. - Bree 8/22/09

Leave your own review and rating.

SOUTH BEACH DIET VIDEOS

Other videos

South Beach YouTube Channel

South Beach Diet Meal Plan

South Beach Diet Workout

DIET and NUTRITION

The first phase lasts for two weeks and has you remove starches like bread, pasta and rice, potatoes, fruits, milk, yogurt, honey and baked goods. Sugars are completely eliminated. During the first phase of South Beach, you'll enjoy three balanced meals and some snacks that should include lean meats and fish, eggs, low-fat cheese, fresh vegetables, beans and nuts.

Phase two of the South Beach Diet will allow you to slowly re-introduce fruits, whole-grain breads and pastas. You'll choose just one carbohydrate and include that in one meal each day for one week. You are encouraged to wait a few days and if there are no noticeable effects, introduce one more healthy carbohydrate. Continue this until you're able to successfully have two or three healthy carbohydrates each day. Phase two will continue until you meet your goal weight.

You'll begin the maintenance, or third, phase of South Beach once you've met your goal weight. It's here that you'll put to practice all that you learned in phases one and two.

The book and website offer many South Beach-friendly recipes. There is also a complete line of South Beach Diet foods that can be purchased in your grocery store from cereals to frozen meals. But many of the nutrition bars and snack items contain artificial sweeteners, which have been known to induce gastrointestinal problems.

If you become a member of the South Beach Diet web site, you will have access to specific meal plans for each phase of the program. You will also have access to a daily menu that you can customize to meet your specific tastes. The meals are only suggestions, but help give you some ideas to keep things fresh. Due to the first phase of the program being only two weeks, many of the recipes you will find for the South Beach Diet are for phase two of the program, which you stay on until you reach your goal weight. Below is a sample day of eating on the South Beach Diet during the second phase of the program:

  • Breakfast – Greet the Sun Breakfast Pizza; coffee or tea with low-fat or nonfat milk and a sugar substitute; Vegetable juice cocktail
  • Snack – Spicy Nut Mix
  • Lunch – Crisp Green Salad; Whole-Wheat Pizza Margherita
  • Snack – Veggies with Cilantro Pesto Dip
  • Dinner – Grilled Salmon; Edamame Salad; Baked Tomatoes with Basil and Parmesan; Mixed Field Greens Salad
  • Dessert – Peanut Butter and Jelly Cookies
EXERCISE

The South Beach Diet encourages you to incorporate a regular exercise routine as part of leading a healthy lifestyle. Exercise not only helps you lose weight faster, but it can also make you feel healthier, stronger and more energized.

Working out not only helps you get past weight-loss plateaus and lose weight faster; it can also make your heart stronger. Dr. Agatston recommends that that you do at least 20 minutes of interval walking every other day of the week.

The South Beach Diet website features numerous articles and tips on how to fit in fitness into your daily routine regardless of how busy you are.

The updated version of the South Beach Diet called South Beach Diet Supercharged offers a fairly detailed exercise plan. The fitness plan works on areas of the core, cardio and strength and flexibility. All of these areas are important to shape a fit and healthy body. Online members will automatically have access to the Fitness Club which includes:

  • A daily walking routine
  • Hundreds of Pilates-based core movements including pictures and step-by-step videos
  • Exercises for every level from beginner to advanced

Simply incorporating the fitness program along with the South Beach Diet will allow you to tone your abs, boost your energy and help you break through plateaus.

See the South Beach Diet Supercharged review

SOUTH BEACH DIET FAQ

Common questions asked about the South Beach Diet by our community. Click each to see the full answer

What is the cost of the South Beach Diet program? - Mary 7/5/11

What kinds of food can you eat on the South Beach Diet? - Yoga Jim 2/21/11

CONCLUSION

You must wonder if the South Beach Diet is just another marketing attempt to motivate folks who are desperate to lose weight? With its strong assertions and its complete line of food products hitting grocery store shelves everywhere, makes you question how much of its appeal is fact or fiction? The truth is that any diet that cuts calories will help you lose weight. The South Beach Diet is no different.

It's encouragement of eating vegetables, lean proteins, and healthy fats is admirable. Its elimination of white sugar and refined carbohydrates is equally laudable albeit challenging to follow. And many people have had a lot luck losing weigh following the South Beach Diet. But the South Beach Diet itself has some scientific flaws and many nutritionists would argue that its promise of losing 8-12 pounds in 14 days is a bit aggressive and may not be able to stand up against the test of time.

But if you've got a lot of willpower and don't mind knowing that you might be buying into another fad diet, then this might be just the diet for you.

See the Official South Beach Diet Website

SOUTH BEACH DIET SLIDESHOWS

View About South Beach Diet Slideshow

7 Weight Loss Plans Fit for Fall

The Cost of Losing 20 Pounds

SOUTH BEACH DIET RESOURCES

About the South Beach Diet at WebMD

South Beach Diet Recipes

South Beach Diet at Wikipedi

South Beach Diet Review at Mayo Clinic

South Beach Diet Contact Information
Common Misspellings

south beech diet, Southbeach diet, Sobe, SBD, South Beach, South Beech Diet, South Beach Deit, southbeach diet, southbeachdiet.com


Related Diets: Atkins Advantage, Atkins Diet, South Beach Diet Supercharged, Low-Carb Diet, Sugar Busters!


> Leave Feedback

User Feedback

(Page 6 of 7, 133 total comments)

Sydney

The SBD, first time around (phase 1), was a hard because I was surrounded by people eating junk, junk, and more junk. It was VERY difficult, I had to constantly distract myself. So my number ONE recommendation: have a small support group. Also, the first time around-while I was doing phase 1- I didn't exactly do the diet by the book... I mean I never anything on the 'bad' list..(no fruit, bread, rice, candy, cookie, cake, non-lowfat dairy, etc.) I ate a TON of veggies, lean meats, low-fat cheese, LOTS of celery, LOTS of eggs, and oh my goodness LOTS of salad & almonds. But, let me get to my point. When I did NOT cook the meals i ate by the book I was very 'out-of-it'. I took a nap every chance I could and had a lot of headaches (the reason being: before I was very addicted to sugar.. before SBD if I had a headache I would just pop a reeses cup in my mouth and be done with it.) Now I'm back to doing phase 1 again, a couple months later, and I'm doing everything by the book and oh my goodness I practically JUMP out of bed in the morning I have so much more energy. So... number TWO recommendation: Do SBD by the book. Also first time around I lost only 6 pounds in the full 14 days, this time it's been only three days since I started again and I've already lost 5 pounds!! DO it by the book!!!

posted Jul 3rd, 2008 12:57 pm


John F.

READ THE BOOK!! Too many people judge the South Beach Diet based on hearing there are no carbs and no fruit. This is simply NOT true! READ THE BOOK! Understand the program before you decide that it is not for you. The South Beach Diet teaches you eat properly and healthily. The first two weeks (Phase 1) restricts carbs and fruits in order to recalibrate your body and jump start your metabolism into a proper diet regimen. During Phase 1 you will eat plenty of vegetables (which do have small amounts of carbs) , meats, and dairy (low-fat). Make sure that you are eating proper portion sizes. Eating too much healthy food is still unhealthy. During Phase 2 you will start to introduce whole grain carbs and fruits. During Phase 3 you will begin the rest of your life of healthy eating habits and smart food choices. READ THE BOOK, implement proper portion sizes, and you won't even have to follow the meal plan exactly, you will know what foods and recipes you can substitute without hamperring the diet itself. Buy the recipe book for tons of delicious easy to make meals. Even without exercising, which I reccommend, your body will become healthy, you will feel better and have more energy and sleep more soundly. READ THE BOOK! That can't be emphasized enough. You have to understand why you are eating the foods prescribed so that you will understand that Phases 1 & 2 are temporary and merely a stepping stone to your future.

posted Jun 29th, 2008 5:47 pm


TG

I used the south beach diet last year and did only Phase 1, I felt great I wasn't tired all the time and I had more energy. I lost around 3lbs at first. I do suggest the book. I left the program due to my working two jobs and never finding the time to be disiplined on my food habits. I am looking to do the program again.

posted Jun 26th, 2008 8:29 am


Jaime

I love the South Beach Diet......i went on it a few years back and lost 62 Lbs in just 9 months. ive gained most of it back now but only because of my own lack of disipline. once u cheat a little bit u wanna just keep cheating. i am starting it again 2morrow n getting the supercharged book today. i refuse to buy the products in the store i rather just know everything i am putting on my plate. even the people that come to me for advice to lose weight i tell them south beach or if they only have to lose a couple pounds and think its to harsh i tell them to go right to phase 2 which is just pretty much substituing anyways.

posted Jun 15th, 2008 2:33 pm


Anonymous

Phase I nearly did me in. I was weak and starved most of the time and left work early a few times because I was feeling so bad. Plus it was EXPENSIVE to purchase all the fresh veggies. I started it in the winter, however, when fresh produce is more expensive. I did lose weight - 8 pounds in the two weeks of Phase 1. Phase 2, where I could gradually re-introduce fruits and grains, was too hard to maintain. Plus I hated cooking for myself as I live alone. Most of the recipes in the book serve 4. I would recommend it but please read the book carefully. Realize that Phase 1 will be hard and you may be constantly weak.

posted May 5th, 2008 8:38 am


marie

Hello there, does anyone know if you use some real sugar in the dishes such as the dessert will you not lose the weight; I ask this because my son who is 13 is going on the diet and I know he wont do some of the first phase. Like he hated tomato juice and will want sugar in his dessert. Any advice how you can substitute in the first phase?

posted Apr 10th, 2008 11:00 am


Kimberley

On Jan 2006 I went on the South Beach Diet. THe first two weeks I lost 12 pounds. Over the next 6 months I lost another 25 pounds. For almost 2 years I maintained my weight . Sept 2007 I quit smoking Yeppers I have gained all my weight back .....Replacing food for a smoke . YIKES I! So it looks like I am headed Back to the Beach.

posted Apr 7th, 2008 9:39 am


Dev

I love South Beach! It really is just a healthier way of eating. I have to agree with the posters before me that if you didn't succeed at this diet, you didn't give it a chance. It's so easy to follow. As for the pre-packaged foods, I avoid them like the plague. They go against the very fundamentals thatSouth Beach was based on.

posted Apr 5th, 2008 3:58 pm


Diya

This is my 5th day on this diet.. and i ve been cheating a bit.. cudnt let go of the fruits... i m still a lot lighter.. (5 lb in 5 days) not at all bad for starters.. and i m almost never hungry.. thats the best part..

posted Mar 28th, 2008 11:57 am


Meghan

I read the book and wet on the diet... for a day. I did everything that I was supposed to, but I constantly felt hungry. When I woke up the next morning I had absolutely NO STREGNTH; I could barely even lift my head. I think this diet was too much of a shock for my body. I run on carbs so I switched to a high fiber diet insted.

posted Mar 18th, 2008 2:53 pm


Kristin

The South beach Diet is what worked for me and I only have great things to say about it. First of all, I'm a cheater. I can't follow directions well and I eat alot! On the SB Diet, I ate relentlessly but only on the foods that met the low glycemic index. I cheated on mayo and BBQ sauce and plus I ate as much as I wanted of everything I decided I wanted. I rid the fridge of all unwanted (high on glycemic index) food, and filled it with all the goodies that are on the "good" list. I lost 12 pounds and 2 pant sizes initially during the first 2 weeks, and continued to lose an additional 17 pounds over a 3 month period, where I then went on maintenance. If I felt I was cheating too much after awhile I'd go back to Phase 1 for a week and so on and so forth. I introduced exercise immediately as that's the sensible thing to do, but you should alwasy consult with your physician before dieting and exercising. I still have my skinny pants and fat pants which thank God I haven't gotten back into the fat ones. lol

posted Mar 17th, 2008 10:08 pm


JoAnne

In response to Michele. You take the total amount of carbs and subtract the fiber and sugar alcohol and that gives you your net carb. I have done Atkins and I think you should be fine eating their bars. I ordered the SBD book and am going to try that. I did lose 28 lbs on Atkins but I found it hard to stay on. My hardest meal to deal with is breakfast because I can't eat eggs everyday and I don't like to put much effort into cooking before I go to work. I am hoping this diet gives me better morning options. Any suggestions? Good luck to all!

posted Feb 29th, 2008 2:07 pm


michele

what does impact carbs mean? When you read the back of some bars it will say 20 grams of carbs but on the front it will say 3grams of impact carbs. Is this ok to eat on the south beach diet?


michele

does anyone know if the atkins bars are ok to eat on phase 1 of the south beach diet?


Jackie

How much is the maximum daily intake of beans (or any legumes) during Phase 1 of the South Beach Diet, please?


Anonymous

It works! And if you don't have issues with sugar cravings, or not alot to lose, you can go straight to Phase 2. As far as the bars and other products go, they are for convenience purposes. And I would bet money those bars made Jamie sick because she doesn't tolerate sugar alcohols well (I don't either, and I can't eat the sugar free chocolates, etc either). I do think that saying if this isn't the diet for you "there is no hope for you" is extreme. Everyone reacts differently, some people may prefer weight watchers, for example.


justlil'oleme

A NEW SB BOOK? Fantastic! I have all of them. They are kinda like a diet BIBLE....lol ! Looking forward to the new book with the exercises and all. What I like about the South Beach Diet Books...everytime I read them..I found something new...I missed. Strange Huh ? Thanks Dr. Agatson for making me realize I needed to start eating Heathier. YOU are an inspiration to everyone! Thanks again!


Anonymous

I think this is is last book...which is available at Amazon. The South Beach Heart Program: The 4-Step Plan that Can Save Your Life (Hardcover) Is there another one??


Anonymous

I have been on SBD for 8 months and have lost 50 lbs., halfway to my goal weight. It's a great, healthy plan. You do not have to eat any of their products or join the online service. Get the book from the library and find one of the free online support groups, if you want. SB actually advises against eating prepared, "convenience" foods. You can have 2 - 3 servings of fruit/day after Phase I. The only things you can't have are refined sugars and carbs. I have never been able to lose weight before and I have had no problem sticking to this plan. No hunger, just great food. There is not a prescribed exercise plan, but it is advised to do the exercise of your choice. There is an updated book coming out in a couple of months and I hear exercise will be part of it.


kimbo

Why is this Even Called a diet? I agree the first Phase is a little restrictive but only for two weeks. The second Phase ..You start adding some of the restricted food back into your diet. When you lose the weight you want...then you start Phase III this is how you eat for the rest of your life. It really is NOT all that hard. With a little discilpine..you can accomplish your goals. I know I FEEL so much better eating this way. South Beach is just a Healthier way of Eating. I don't consider it a diet at all. When you hear the word diet..dosen't it make you want to run away? I give South Beach a thumbs up. Go ahead and try it...I dare ya!



 

Leave Feedback

Skip the moderation queue by becoming a MyDIR member.

Already a member?

Need to sign up?
It’s free and only it takes a minute.
There are two ways to join:


Or, proceed without an account