The Atkins diet is a diet that has been around for awhile and has become increasingly popular. It is a controversial diet because of how the diet works. The main idea behind the Atkins diet is to decrease the amount of carbohydrates that are taken into the body. By doing so, the body will then turn to the fat storage of the body and burn that off as energy. This burning of fat will cause the amount of fat on the body to decrease, and the person will then lose weight. This diet is done in 4 phases. The first stage is Induction, followed by Ongoing Weight Loss, then Premaintenance, with the last stage being Lifetime Maintenance.
The second stage is usually the longest stage on the weight loss path. Below are the details of the Ongoing Weight Loss phase (OWL).
How It Is Done
Ongoing Weight Loss, or OWL as it is nicknamed, is the second phase of the Atkins diet. This stage is started after the two week Induction phase is finished. In this stage, carbohydrates will slowly be added back. The hard part is to figure out the right amount of carbohydrates that can be consumed so weight can still be lost. A lot of self teaching will need to be done in this stage. The Atkins diet is a true lifestyle change, and a lot of that changing will go on during the Ongoing Weight Loss phase.
What Can Be Eaten
Each phase has its own acceptable foods list. The first stage has the shortest food list. That list is carried into the second phase and a few more food items are added to that list. Items that can be eaten in this phase are items such as nuts and seeds, berries and a few other fruits, additional dairy products, a small amount of vegetable juices and legumes. While this list is still small, with some creativity, the menu will not become too repetitious. It is recommended that while in this phase, a multivitamin and omega 3 supplements are taken to be sure that the proper nutrients are being consumed.
When to Move On
The second phase will be a slow process, especially when compared to the fast nature of the first stage. This stage is continued until you are within 10 pounds of your goal weight. Do not move onto the next stage too quickly. This stage is the beginning of preparing yourself for the maintaining phases, and it could hurt weight loss chances if you moved on too soon.
While in the second phase, you need to be drinking at least 8 glasses of water per day. It is also important to be getting the proper amount of salt each day. Your body will be going through some serious changes, and it may take awhile for your body to adjust. Because this stage may be the longest stage depending on how much weight needs to be lost, it is easy to get frustrated and off track. Weight loss is a slow process and needs to be treated as such.