The Dukan Diet versus the Adkins Diet
Saturday, April 07, 2012
Dr. Adkins created the Adkins diet based on the theory that a zero carbohydrate diet was healthier than all the traditional diets out there. A lot of people debate this because Dr. Adkins allowed you to eat unlimited quantities of any zero carb foods. This caused a lot of people to begin feasting on steak and bacon. While this theory and diet does work, it's been accused of increasing the risk of heart disease due to the unrestricted consumption of cholesterol and saturated fats. The truth is the Dr. Adkins himself actually followed this diet by eating primarily vegetables. It was not intended to be an all-meat diet. That was the big misunderstanding. When Dr. Adkins died, it was found that he did not have heart disease.
Another major objection from the mainstream is that a calorie is a calorie. If you consume more calories than you burn, you will not lose weight. Higher quality calories make you healthier, but the number of calories you consume impact your weight. Two completely different sciences that are mistakenly overlapped. Quantity = weight. Quality = health.
The Dukan Diet originated in France. Dr. Dukan point out that that the calorie assumption above is just not understood accurately. That for your body to burn protein calories requires far more calories. If you consume 1000 protein calories, it is not the same as consuming 1000 carbohydrate calories. The theory above is still correct . It's just that you have to consider the digestive energy burn. It basically means that proteins are the most essential foods for the body and they also burn more energy to metabolize. Therefore, you can consume proteins more freely.
He also realizes the importance of limiting fats. There are debates on whether saturated fats are unhealthy or not. Conventional wisdom is that saturated fat is evil. However, many experts say that saturated fats are actually essential and that consuming saturated fats is not unhealthy. The body is actually made of fats and needs fats. However, we all are worried about heat disease so while that debate rages on, Dr. Dukan recommends keeping the intake of fats to a minimum. I think that makes sense.
Most nutritionist agree that natural foods are healthier than processed or imitation foods, such as margarine. It's recommended that you use real butter and/or expeller pressed virgin coconut oil. Both are saturated fats. So use them, but keep them to a minimum. Do not substitute for artificial alternatives. Olive oil is also healthy and is a saturated fat. Just don't overdo it.
Dr Dukan has broken down your diet into three things. Carbohydrates, fats, and proteins. He wants you to consume lean proteins without any limits. He wants you to minimize fats as much as possible, but they are not forbidden. He wants you to virtually eliminate carbohydrates.
Proteins include lean beef, turkey, chicken, and pork. Soy products, fish, shellfish, eggs are all okay. And so that you get the proper dose of fiber, he promotes using oat bran and has a pancake recipe that is amazing.
He breaks the diet down into four phrases. The first phase being the strictest and only lasts a few days. The attack phase. Then the cruise phase, where you remain for a long time. It allows vegetables while the attack phase does not. The third and fourth phases are designed to transition you from a diet to forever habits and this is the key to the diet having a permanent impact.
The final phase really only has one restriction. One day a week you should eat a pure protein diet. The rest of the week you can do as you please. But I will warn you that it will never be healthy to binge on cupcakes. :)
Dr. Dukan's diet is perfect for people that prefer some quantities of food while losing weight. If you can give up all breads, all candies, all cakes, all sugars -- you can succeed on this diet. I am a sugar addict and I found it was much easier than I thought. Dr. Dukan does allow artificial sweeteners and diet sodas. However, i recommend you minimize on these as artificial sweeteners still promote sugar cravings. Go easy on those and you'll have less cravings.
I recommend the Dukan diet and recommend you learn to prepare dishes with sauces that fit the dietary restrictions. Having steaks three times a day will not work well. Learn the new recipes so you can make really interesting dishes. More variety is the key. If you love fish, then you can easily go nuts with variation and have a lot of fun dieting.