What are the differences between Atkins diet and a low calorie diet?


While looking up different diets, we came across the Atkins low carbohydrate diet. What are the differences between such a diet and a low-calorie diet?

Are low carbohydrate diets safe? Are low-calorie diets safe for that matter?

How do these diets affect people with different profiles i.e. athletes vs. overweight people?

Are there perhaps different strategies that should be applied to the different profiles?

Do you perhaps have menu plans that we could obtain from you?

Atkins diet dates back to the 1960’s and is very low in carbohydrates and high in protein. A low-calorie diet is usually less than 1200 calories per day, which is not recommended but is not necessarily low in carbohydrates.

Low calorie and low carbohydrate diets can be used under medical supervision for morbid obese persons (twice their healthy body weight or at least 100 pounds overweight). Under other circumstances, these diets are not recommended.

The problem with these diets is that after the first few days, liver stores of glucose (glycogen) are depleted and the body turns to the only other source of glucose which is lean muscle tissue (organs and muscles). Metabolic rate decreases because the body thinks it is starving and because the muscles that burn calories are cannibalized to provide glucose.

Starvation affects all persons the same and both low calorie / low carbohydrate would reduce athletic performance. The difference is how much stored glycogen and lean muscle tissue does the person have to lose before dehydration occurs. As your body burns

I generally do not provide menus for diets, especially not low calorie or low carbohydrate diets for weight loss. If your doctor recommends a low calorie or low carbohydrate diet, ask to see a dietitian for assistance in menu planning.

In the meantime have you tried HELP Healthy Eating for Life Plan®? It will create a healthy eating plan for you within healthy limits of carbohydrate, protein, and fat. Your food preferences for the type of milk, meat or not, beans or not, and snacks or not will be considered when creating your personalized plan.