The South Beach Diet was created by the US cardiologist, Dr. Arthur Agatston, practicing in Florida. The South Beach Diet is often compared to the Atkins Diet, or other low-carbohydrate diets, because the South Beach Diet recommends carbohydrates that are high in fiber or nutrition, and low in glycemic index.
Anyone who is overweight or obese is at a higher risk for developing heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes. There are many types of diets that people can try in order to lose weight and stay fit – low-carb diets, low-fat diets, vegetarian diets, but the South Beach Diet is one of the most popular nowadays.
If you decide to try the South Beach Diet, you will learn there are many restrictions as to what you can eat. For the first 14 days of the diet, you cannot eat bread, rice, pasta, potatoes, baked goods or even fruit. This phase is comparable to the induction phase of the Atkins Diet where you can only eat 20 grams of carbohydrates each day. However, the purpose of the South Beach Diet is not to be a low-carb or low-fat diet but instead to teach you to eat the right carbohydrates and the right fats.
According to the South Beach Diet good carbohydrates are the carbs wit a low glycemic index, and bad carbs are the ones with high glycemic index. Good fats are monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats and the South Beach Diet recommends eating them, instead of saturated and trans fats which are bad for your body and health.
The first phase of the South Beach Diet is to banish your cravings. You can eat normal-size helpings of meat, turkey, fish, shellfish and chicken, as well as eating many vegetables, eggs, nuts and cheese. During the first phase of the South Beach Diet you will eat three meals a day and you will eat to satisfy your hunger. You will not eat bread, potatoes, pasta, rice or baked goods for the first 14 days. You can’t even eat fruits. However, after being on the South Beach Diet for two weeks you will begin to eat these foods again. After this phase of the diet your body chemistry should begin to change. You should not experience as many cravings for the foods that can be considered “bad carbs” and “bad fats.”
In the second phase of the South Beach Diet, you will reintroduce carbs into your diet. If you really loved bread, you can eat bread again. Perhaps you are more of a pasta person, and then you can eat pasta. You will have to decide which of these foods you want to indulge in. You cannot eat all of these foods all of the time. You should find that you do not even have strong cravings for many of these foods. However, you should not deny yourself when you really do feel hungry for something. You can eat a dessert once in awhile without jeopardizing your weight loss. Stay in phase two of the South Beach Diet while you continue to lose weight. Once you lose the desired weight go to phase three.
Phase three of the South Beach Diet is known as a diet for life. This plan should become more of a way of life than a diet over time. You can eat foods you like and in normal-sized portions. Of course, you still must continue to eat the right carbs and the right fats. The South Beach Diet brings changes to your body, thus changing the way your body responds to food. These changes will benefit your cardiovascular system and your overall health.
For some, the restrictions of the South Beach Diet can be difficult, especially in the beginning. However, the South Beach Diet can help you to lose weight. If you are overweight or obese it is beneficial to diet. You can lose some weight so that you feel better about yourself. More importantly in losing weight you will improve your health. Being overweight can increase your risk of many health problems. If you lose weight, you will be at less of a risk for developing diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and heart disease. If the South Beach Diet is successful for you, it can help you to live a longer, healthier life.