Does a Low Carb Diet Work?

Before You Consider a Low Carb Diet

low carb diet ideas

Before you choose any weight loss program, you have to make it as clear as possible that the diet in question is efficient and safe.

Then you might want to ask:

There are dozens of programs on the market. Why should I choose a diet that is low in carbohydrates?

The weight loss market is indeed huge, but there actually are only three general categories to lose weight:

1. limiting calories
2.  limiting fat
3. limiting carbohydrates

1. Low-fat weight loss programs can be good as a long-term regimen for athletes, those with only a few extra pounds to lose, or those who need only to maintain their healthy weight. There used to be a trend of using low-fat programs to improve blood cholesterol and decrease the risk of cardiovascular diseases, but recent clinical data questioned this approach.

2. Low-calorie weight loss programs require self-discipline, support and guidance. Possibly the best known is the Weight Watchers program, which has attracted millions of dieters over decades. An interesting note: Before the low-fat boom, Weight Watchers offered carb-limiting and not fat-limiting programs.

3. Low-carb weight loss programs success, in part, can be explained by the fact that low-carb intake curbs the appetite, so it is easy to stay on the diet and even make it a lifestyle. Opponents often stress that focusing on consuming low carbs can not be considered balanced. Dieters are usually advised to take supplements to ensure an adequate nutrient intake.

Especially strict is the Ketogenic diet, which requires limiting not only carbs, but also protein and even water.

A True Low Carb Diet

low carb dietThis is a strategy that when followed conscientiously, produces a by-product called ketones. Most dieters can reach ketosis (a condition associated with increased amounts of ketones in the blood) by limiting their carb intake to less than 60 grams a day.
The state of ketosis is what makes a ketogenic diet metabolically so similar to fasting that it is often being referred to as a controlled fast.

Then there is THE Ketogenic Diet is a stringent, mathematically calculated high in fat and low not only in carbohydrates but also in protein. It also limits water intake to avoid ketones’ dilution and carefully controls calorie intake. This has been in existence since the 1920s, when it was considered to be a breakthrough in the treatment of childhood epilepsy, but was usurped by synthetic medications in the 1950s. Now it is used in neurological treatments.
The clinics that prescribed this type of program followed their patients’ progress for decades, collecting and documenting many cases. None reported any serious side effects and none concluded this program was unsafe.

Is There a such thing as fast weight loss?

low carb dietLow Carb programs, such as the Atkins diet, 21 day tummy diet, or 3 day diet plan are successful for many people for the simple reason that they are easier to stick to than conventional ways to lose weight. You do not get the hunger cravings that you get when on a classic fat-free foods option.

Basically, in simple terms, this is the science behind Low Carb Diets: Normally, the first thing that the body burns off as a source of energy is carbohydrates. However, if the body has no carbohydrates to burn, it looks for another energy source – fat. Therefore, by reducing your carbohydrate intake your body naturally burns fat and you lose weight. Remember, anyone beginning a new weight loss program, or dramatic change in their diet or health routine should consult their physician beforehand.

An increasing body of clinical evidence supports what you should consider a basic principle of fat reduction: if you’re in relatively good shape and you’re looking to get leaner, then the #1 dietary change you should make is to drop your carbohydrate intake and up your protein immediately.

For some reason, people still don’t want to understand and accept that dietary fat per-se is NOT the issue for most people who are active. It’s the intake of excess carbohydrates that is largely responsible for adding adipose tissue to your body. Cut the carbs significantly and you’ll drop the fat.

Here’s the evidence. In a recent study, two groups were monitored. Both groups consumed 30% of their daily calorie intake in fats. The only significant dietary difference was that one group consumed only 12% of their calories from protein (58% carbohydrates), while the other group consumed 25% protein (45% carbohydrates). Even with consistent fat intake and a relatively minor reduction in carbs (from 58% to 45%), the results were clear. After six months, the higher protein, lower carb group lost a full 50% more fat than the higher carb group.

I would expect results to be even more dramatic if the carbohydrate intake was dropped down closer to 40%, as in the popular 40-30-30 fat loss programs.

It’s important to realize that we’re not suggesting cutting out carbohydrates altogether—this is ultimately counter-productive—but rather a gradual reduction in carbs to balance out your weight loss programs. There’s no doubt that most people, and Americans in particular, over-eat carbohydrates.

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