Wednesday, March 07, 2007
The Atkins diet works, so shut up
Barry Sears, who developed the Zone diet, criticized the study as "bad science," saying details show the participants did not really follow the diet rules.
"The execution basically was fairly pathetic at best so the conclusions are jaded," he said in an interview. The way people followed the Atkins diet in the study, he said, is actually closer to the Zone's principles.
Study author Gardner, however, said one of the strengths of the $2 million project was that it mimicked real-world conditions, with participants preparing or buying all their own meals and not everyone following the diets exactly.
Gardner said the Atkins diet has "a very simple message. Get rid of all refined carbohydrates to lose weight," thus targeting the increasing consumption of refined sugars, such as high-fructose corn syrup.
He also said the Atkins diet is best at encouraging people to drink more water, and when people replace sweetened drinks with water, they do not generally eat more food.
I have had more than a few people tell me that Atkins is bad for me and that all that meat will kill me. The thing is, it is the only diet that has shown me positive results over time. The key is being on this diet doesn't feel like I am on a diet. I hate counting calories and feeling hungry. Besides the gout I don't drink on this diet. At least I shouldn't, alcohol makes me crave carbs. I have friends who have lost weight using Atkins and they enjoy a scotch but I try and stay away from it. Ok, maybe a vodka once a month, but not too often because it aggravates the gout. In fact, the diet is so good that I have slacked off on watching my weight because I know I can always go back to Atkins. That is a bad habit. But now I am back on track with no distractions.
So all you doubters, stop with the criticism. Let me eat my eggs in the morning. Let me eat chicken almost every day. (I love chicken.) Stop saying, "Why don't you eat a piece of fruit, it won't kill you." No it won't, but it won't help me lose weight.