My "Dr. Atkins" Diet Experiences

I think I win. I’ve lost 70 pounds as of Saturday on my low-carb plan and I’ve been doing this since February. I have never, ever felt as good as I do now, and not just because I look better.

Ok, here’s my experience: it was slow going in the beginning. I guess when you get that fat you don’t realize how much you have to lose before it shows. But, when it started coming off, it fell off. Man, did it fall off. You guys have no idea how much money I’ve spent on clothes this year and I don’t think I know the actual amount (nor do I want to).

I feel rock-solid. I used to get so hungry that I’d get pissed. Does that sound familiar at all? I’d also get very shaky if I went too long in between meals. I tried losing weight every other way I knew how. Low fat diets do not work for me. But low carb diets don’t work for everyone either. From “Living Low Carb” by Fran McCullough:

“A low carb diet definitely isn’t for you if you have serious kidney problems, which is why it’s important to have bloodwork done by a doctor before you begin.”


“The diet may also not be for you if you’re a vegetarian…Many vegetarians successfully eat low-carb, but it requires a huge effort, especially if you’re a vegan (someone who shuns eggs and dairy products as well as meat).”

Redukter, there is a whole chapter in this book on vegetarianism and low carb diets. Just FYI.


“Dr. Leo Galland feels that pear-shaped people do best on high carbs, wheras apple-shaped people will flourish on low carbs, especially those with low HDL. If you feel strong after eating a steak and tired after eating pasta, low carb is your diet.”

Okay, so obviously I like this book. Dr. Atkins is okay but he’s way too restrictive. And as usual, you should always question the “doctors” in books like these. I know I included a “doctor’s” opinion here but hey, I trust this author.

My doctor’s opinion is that the low carb diet is perfect for me. All my stuff (blood pressure, HDL, LDL, and assorted whatnot levels)is very, very good.

I’m increasing my carbs now and I have not gained weight yet. I’m probably up to an average of 50-75 grams a day.

Sorry, Sophie, but I win. :slight_smile: As of last week, I lost 90 pounds on a low carb diet that I started in January.

I agree that low carb is not for everyone. I also think that low carb/high fat just does not make sense. How can I lose weight eating something made with a cup of heavy cream?

My diet consists of lean meats (mostly deli turkey, chicken breasts, and salmon with some low fat smoked sausage on occasion) lots of low carb vegetables (mainly squash, spinach, lettuce, brocoli, and green beans) with higher carb vegetables in moderation (carrots, tomatoes). Breakfast was almost always cottage cheese, lunch was almost always a salad with lots of turkey and a low carb/low fat dressing. Dinner was protein and a vegetable. (Right now I am off the diet because I am recovering from a tummy tuck, which I needed after all the weight loss.)

For the record, I was quite apple-shaped, as are most overweight men, which may account for their greater success with this diet. After I lost about 60 pounds, my cholesteral dropped from 220 to about 160 and my triglycerides from 328 to 89. I have never been healthier and I feel wonderful.

I’m wondering what the ratio of carbs, fats and proteins should be, according to Atkins or other low-carb doctors?

Is it

20% fat

** susan_foster **

Correction - Atkins is a lifestile change and in no way is a short term diet.

Also if you think of the part of the food pyrimid you are excluding - mainly grains that are undigestable in their raw form and take many steps to make them digestable - then yes it does sound healthy to exclude these ‘foods’

** buddy1 ** I’ve been on atkins for about 9 yrs -never had the dream effect but heard of it from others.

** Anahita**

it’s more like 45%p 45%f 10%c but the p and the f can vary it’s the c that you are limiting.

Big Sam never had any more trouble shitting then before atkins (not that I had many shitting problems) - actually the shit is usually less messy requiring fewer wipes.
Lodrain Atkins does not recommend vegi.'s go on his diet becaus ethe food choice will be too limiting but does have some patents who manage this.

I’m not on Atkins, but I can certainly answer this. I drink probably about the same amount of water every day.

Yes. I sip constantly. I have a 32oz mug on my desk that I’m constantly sipping on and refilling throughout the day. At home I’ve got another 320z bottle that I fill up and sip on in the mornings and evenings.

Oh, and if I’m not around, I’m probably in the bathroom… :smiley:

Was it general bad breath, or did it smell like nail polish remover? If it’s the later, it’s due to acetone and is a sign that you’re in ketoacidosis (which is a bad thing). It’s most common in diabetics when they’re blood sugar is wacky, but I imagine it could happen to people on the Atkin’s diet.

After taking biochem and learning about all the run-around your body goes through to keep your brain supplied with glucose, I prefer to make it easy on my body and injest carbs. But I won’t debate, and YMMV.

Well, since this old thread was bumped, thought I’d post my experiences.

I’ve been on the Atkins program for almost 3 and a half years, and my experience on it has been almost 100% positive. But it’s definitely not for everyone. I lost about 65 lbs in 1999 and have been maintaining the loss (+/- 5 lbs or so) ever since. The first 30 came off very quickly, the next 25 pretty slowly, and the last few at a snail’s pace. I think low-carb programs, and Atkins in particular, tends to get a bad rap because people call it “no-carb” when in fact it is not, and people tend to think the first two weeks of the program, which is fairly extreme at (IIRC) 20 grams of carb per day, is the entire program.

Part of what I like about it is that you can tailor it to your needs. There is no set number of carbs except for the first two weeks (and I think in the updated program, this “intro” period is even shorter) - when you’re losing, you eat the number of carbs that allows you to lose, and when you’re on maintenance (which I’ve been on for over two years) you take in the number of carbs that allows you to maintain your weight.

I was miserable on a low-fat diet and felt deprived and hungry all the time. On low-carb, I am happy with my food choices and will eat this way the rest of my life. The first couple of weeks were very difficult, as carb withdrawal is a nasty thing the first time around. Rather than indulging in sweet substitutes, my approach was to indulge in something low-carb but decadent, like gourmet cheese that I’d been depriving myself of on low-fat.

I don’t think anyone can really make a case for highly processed carbs and sugar in being an essential part of one’s diet - sure I indulge in this type of thing on occasion, but only on occasion. When I was losing, I ate a lot of vegetables and some fruit (though not a lot of the latter). On maintenance, I added whole wheat bread and additional fruit, and probably average out to around 100 grams of carbs a day. And I have some days when I go completely off the program, but I always go back to it. I’ve found when I go off-program and then back on these days, the “carb withdrawal” isn’t nearly as bad as that first time, and is sometimes not even noticable.

My cholesterol level was pretty good before I lost the weight, which I attribute mainly to genetics. Now my cholesterol is even better - my total is less than 200, but the good-to-bad ratio is phenomenal - my doctor told me he almost never saw numbers as good. And all the rest of my blood work is stellar.

Just a note not to confuse ketosis with ketoacidosis - they’re not the same thing.

Just a FYI: Dr. Atkins suffered cardiac arrest today. I don’t know how much can be read into this since he is over 70.

That’s a quote from the above linked article.

Despite that, I’m sure the anti-Atkins camp will use this article as they see fit.
Wow, did I just post a comment for the PRO side of the debate??? Woo hoo! I can be objective!

My mom lost a about twenty pounds (she’s tiny and was not really overweight) on Atkins, so I gave it a try, and I lasted only a week.

The main problem I had was that after I cut carbs nearly completely (under 20 grams a day), I was so lethargic I could barely get out of bed. I had absolutely no energy; I couldn’t even keep up with my regular daily hike around the neighborhood. It lasted for four days, and though my mom said this was usual (!), I couldn’t live like that. I have never been so lazy in my life, and walking up the stairs was a trial.

God bless everyone who lost a lot of weight, though. I would love to lose twenty pounds but I’d rather be fat than as lethargic as I was on Atkins.

I think she meant it was usual to feel that way the first few days - it’s a fairly typical response as your body adjusts to burning fat for fuel instead of carbs.