What is the South Beach Diet?
The South Beach Diet is a well-known diet plan formulated by Dr. Arthur Agatston and Marie Almon. The main purpose of this diet plan was to prevent heart disease, but later caught on as an extremely popular weight-loss diet in the early 2000's. Although low-fat diets resulted in lower incidences of heart disease and lower cholesterol, Dr Agatston found that they were extremely difficult for dieters to stick to. As a result, the South Beach Diet is not low-fat, nor is it low-carb.
The South Beach Diet is very easy to understand, replacing bad fats with good fats, and bad carbohydrates with good one. It is not a low-carb approach but rather a low-GI one.
According to the South Beach Diet, good fats are those which are unsaturated, or high in omega-3's. The South Beach Diet doesn't allow for saturated or trans fats, and instead of fatty meats and dairy, recommends nuts, oily fish and lean meats.
The South Beach Diet also recommends an intake of ‘good' carbs. These are any which have a low-GI rating. Carbs to include on the South Beach Diet include whole grains, vegetables and beans, while steering clear of highly processed grains and sugars. The idea is to keep insulin levels as low as possible.
The South Beach Diet consists of three phases:
- Phase 1 consists of 14 days of the diet. It removes all processed carbohydrates, sugars as well as fruits. It helps to get rid of hunger.
- Phase 2 will continue as long as the person who is on a diet wants to reduce weight. It includes more fruits, whole grains and vegetables.
- Phase 3 is the maintenance phase, lasting for life. No foods are prohibited, but by this stage dieters should know which foods to avoid and which to eat in larger amounts.
The South Beach Diet has been one of the more popular diets in the past decade or so due to the consistently impressive results produced. Some of the most positive feedback regarding the diet is the low hunger levels and the excellent selection of foods available. If fat loss and overall health are your main goals, the South Beach Diet might be worth a try!
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