Why Some Doctors are Against the Atkins Diet

Some doctors have come out against the Atkins Diet in recent years, but that number is steadily declining in light of recent research. When Dr. Atkins first published his “Diet Revolution” in 1972, many health care professionals were shocked by the suggestion that a low carb diet could be good for you. In fact, many condemned the approach and decided to go against the Atkins diet without looking at any of his findings.

These doctors based their opinions on years of conventional wisdom, saying that calorie counting was the best way to lose weight. Many also swore by a diet that had a high amount of carbohydrates with less protein and fat.

What has come as a surprise to many of these same doctors, however, is the results their own patients have seen with Dr. Atkins' Diet Plan. In the 1990’s, Dr. Atkins’ “New Diet Revolution,” answered critics by clarifying many of the Atkins Diet cons that had been brought up – and explaining that many people had misunderstood the risks and what the diet was about.

Below I’ve outlined some of the Atkins Diet cons (according to criticism against the Atkins diet) that are actually fallacies:

It’s a High Fat Diet

The Atkins Diet advocates a high fat diet. Not true! Dr. Atkins advocated a diet with balanced amounts of protein, fats and healthy salad greens and vegetables. It doesn’t suggest you “pig out” or overindulge in fats, however it doesn’t want you to limit fats, either, as these are sources of nutrients and fuel that are important to replace the carbs you aren’t eating any longer.

My Cholesterol Level Will Increase

The Atkins Diet will raise your cholesterol. Actually, this warning against the Atkins Diet is unfounded. Numerous studies have shown that this low carb only raises your good cholesterol. Bad cholesterol can drop as much as 20 points after a few months on the Atkins program.

The Atkins Diet is Hard to Follow

The Atkins Diet is hard to do because there are so few foods you can eat. Again, this is a misconception, and is probably held by people who only read about the Induction Phase, which is pretty restricted. This is only one small part of the diet, though, and lasts only a few weeks. Atkins actually continues adding more foods, and in a wider variety, every week or two once you hit the Weight Loss phase.

Atkins is Dangerous for Diabetics

Another “against the Atkins Diet” misconception. On the contrary, many people with Type 2 diabetes find that their blood sugar and insulin levels are much more stable after they begin the Atkins lifestyle. Some are even able to stop taking their medication for the first time in years. The danger lies in using the diet without your doctor’s supervision, just like any diet if you have an underlying health condition.

What about Headaches and Tiredness?

The side effects of being on the Atkins program can be uncomfortable. To some extent this may be true; nobody likes to get headaches or feel tired. But these side effects usually only last a few days and are a reaction to your body’s shift in metabolism. You’ll actually stop getting caffeine-induced headaches and have more energy the longer you’re on the diet.

The Atkins Approach is Expensive

You may find that you are spending a bit more on foods at first until you learn more about preparing healthy meals. The initial investment in acceptable spices and ingredients for seasoning and making sauces, etc. is far outweighed by savings in the long run. Fresh vegetables and foods that aren’t processed are almost always cheaper than pre-packaged, prepared foods.

Unfounded Concerns

As with any diet, there are good and bad things about the Atkins Diet, but I think you’ll agree that the concerns most people have about warnings against the Atkins diet are unfounded. In fact, once you’ve lost your extra weight on the Atkins Diet, you’ll be amazed at how healthy and active you are. With so many benefits, it’s clearly one of the better diets around.