100 lb. Club - This CAN'T be Atkins, can it?

View Full Version : This CAN'T be Atkins, can it?

09-24-2007, 01:44 PM
I went to a business breakfast today and was seated by a very large woman. I ordered fresh fruit and oatmeal and was feeling quite proud of myself, considering the delicious sugary whipped creamy crepes they had. The woman next to me ordered this: 6 eggs, scrambled with cheddar and mozzerella cheese, 6 strips of bacon cooked soft, and 4 sausage patties. When the waiter asked if she wanted toast, the lady smiled very approvingly at herself and said, "No, I can't eat bread. I am on Atkins." It was all I could do to keep my jaw from dropping open. By my quick calculations, that had to be a 1500 calorie breakfast. True, she didn't eat a single carb, but how in the world can this be an effective weight loss plan? Does Atkins truly encourage a completely wanton mass consumption of meat and cheese and eggs and pay no regard to fat or calories? Or was this woman just a very mis-informed "self-taught" Atkins-esque dreamer who made up her own rules? I mean, in the end, isn't a calorie a calorie? If you are eating absolutely no carbs but you are still eating more calories than you burn, won't you still gain weight? I obviously know nothing about Atkins and I am not taking a negative position against it, I am just VERY curious to know what it's all about.

Suzanne 3FC
09-24-2007, 01:53 PM
Nope! She needs to read the book.

09-24-2007, 02:00 PM
The Atkins menu des NOT suggest 6 egss at a time . Their induction menu suggests 2.
I agree with Suzanne , read the book.

09-24-2007, 02:03 PM
Actually the book says to eat as much eggs cheese and meats that you want in the first two weeks. then after that you start adding cards in 5 carbs a day the first week and then 5 more then next week until you figure out how many carbs you can eat to still lose weight and then how many carbs you can eat to maintain your weightloss and not lose anymore.

my husband did atkins for 3 months. LOST 40 pounds, his cholesterol and blood pressure were down to normal. but he started eating carbs again and he gained it all back plus some and his cholesterol and bp shot through the roof. NO ONE CAN EAT THAT WAY FOR THE REST OF THEIR LIVES... and once you start eating carbs again, I think it catches up with you.

09-24-2007, 02:08 PM
Ohh boy. I don't know anything about atkins, but I can tell this new "lifestyle" thing is really setting in. Reading what she ordered made me feel a little queasy. :dizzy: Before I would have been envious, lol.
But! Congrats to YOU for eating healthy!

09-24-2007, 02:08 PM
eat as much eggs cheese and meats that you want

Really??? Seriously?? Eat as much as you want. No mention of reasonable limits or calories or anything?

Wow. I just don't understand.

09-24-2007, 02:11 PM
Actually the book says to eat as much eggs cheese and meats that you want in the first two weeks. then after that you start adding cards in 5 carbs a day the first week and then 5 more then next week until you figure out how many carbs you can eat to still lose weight and then how many carbs you can eat to maintain your weightloss and not lose anymore.

my husband did atkins for 3 months. LOST 40 pounds, his cholesterol and blood pressure were down to normal. but he started eating carbs again and he gained it all back plus some and his cholesterol and bp shot through the roof. NO ONE CAN EAT THAT WAY FOR THE REST OF THEIR LIVES... and once you start eating carbs again, I think it catches up with yo

I'm sorry, I have to disagree...It's not like you don't eat ANY carbs. It's recommended to eat certain vegetables that low in carbs, and salads, stuff like that, along with meats. You can have 3-4 oz of cheeses, and there are quite a few veggies on the approved list.

The way the plan is supposed to work is that you start out on 20 carbs a day, during induction and then add carbs back, seeing what carbs cause you not to lose weight and also find your right amount of carbs that you can have a day. I got a point where I was eating a few fruits along with tons of veggies. I had never eaten as many veggies as when I was on atkins.

No, you don't really have to watch the fat intake, though he does mention eating good fat. Atkins is severely misunderstood and of course if you are eating NO carbs and then start back, you're going to gain back weight. And anyone who just eats meat and cheese are NOT doing atkins.

09-24-2007, 02:24 PM
By "very large," I'm guessing that she was significantly larger than you. It's very possible that even eating like this she will lose some weight. My guess is also that she is very early on in the Atkins program.

A lot of low-carb dieters are entranced by the idea of eating all of the fat and protein they want, at least at first. They almost try to "break" the system and prove that they can't lose weight on a low carb diet. Before my husband and I went on diabetes medications (and therefore had to eat more carbs), we were eating very low carb. Our first week of low carb was like this, and to my amazement (my husband much more so than I), but we both lost weight.

An astonishing thing happens on low carb diets for many people (definitely for my husband and I) - hunger starts to disappear. At the start of low carbing, we were still used to being hungry all of the time (like we were eating carbs), so we thought we had to eat a lot to be full. And while this was true for several days, as we contionued, we were less and less hungry, and began eating less and less. Fat actually lost it's appeal much more quickly for me than my husband, but eventually he reduced his dietary fats also.

09-24-2007, 02:25 PM
I would feel like a total grease ball if I ate that much bacon and sausage. I did Atkins for almost 2 years. Although it was too hard for me to do for the rest of my life I do believe it works if done correctly. I felt great while I was on it. The problem I had was that I quickly returned to eating carbs and therefore quickly gained my weight plus more. I agree with Renee that Atkins really got me started on eating veggies. I ate tons of salad. I think the key for any food plan is moderation.

By the way - good for you for making a healthy choice!

09-24-2007, 02:29 PM
First of all, PLEASE don't bash Atkins, Dek. I'm sorry that it wasn't the right thing for your husband, but that doesn't mean it's not sustainable for other people. We have a woman on this board who has sustained a 100+ pound weight loss on Atkins for over two years.

The book doesn't say to eat as much eggs, meat and cheese as you want, either. Cheese is limited to 3-4oz a day. Eggs DO have carbohydrate (.6 grams, to be exact) in them and the book suggests that each be counted as one carb to keep the math simple. Cheese is also to be counted as one carb per ounce (as cheese has some trace carbs in it). So in that sense, the amount of eggs you eat is definitely limited by the total amount of carbs you can eat in a day. Sausage is something I'd stay far away from unless I knew how it was cooked, as sausage can contain carbs (the book lists pork sausage links as having 2 carbs per 2 links).

Her breakfast, if there were two slices of cheese used (with 6 eggs, it may have been more than that) could have been anywhere from 8-12 grams of carbs...which would have taken a HUGE chunk out of her total for the day. So...I think she needs to re-read the book. Atkins is NOT a no-carb diet, but it is a low-carb diet...and your breakfast companion might not be understanding how carb counts work.

I'm on Atkins--I count my carbs, but I also count my calories. It works for me. In the beginning, I had to actually make sure I was eating ENOUGH calories, because Atkins is a VERY filling diet and it almost eliminated hunger pangs for me. I eat meat--Chicken breast, pork loin and cube steak regularly (in 4-6oz portions), I eat vegetables (Spinach, Romaine-based Salad, Broccoli, etc) two or three times a day, and have nuts and berries a few times a week right now. I'm eating more vegetables than I ever have (I've never been a veggie person, but I'm learning!). I believe that a Low Carb way of eating IS sustainable over the long term, if you transition into maintenance slowly and the right way. Do I expect to eat Induction-level carbs the rest of my life? Absolutely not. It wouldn't be realistic for me. Do I think that I'm ever going to be able to eat the "Typical American" amount of carbs and maintain? No. I think the right spot will be somewhere in between for me, and it's my job to find it when the time comes.

I'm sorry I got off on a tangent here...Just sharing my experience. :)

Like, my favorite breakfast lately?:

Spinach, 1 Over-Medium Egg, 2 slices of Bacon, 1 slice of american cheese (like a bacon/egg/cheese sandwich on top of spinach): 280 calories and about 4 carbs. It keeps me satisfied and is delicious.

09-24-2007, 02:59 PM
First of all I am not BASHING ATKINS!!!!!!!!!! I am just saying the with my experiences from seeing my husband and mother both "succeed" and fail with atkins that MOST people can not sustain eating that way as a lifestyle. it isnt a "diet" that you can just do when you feel like it. It isnt like couting calories or doing weight watchers. It takes a few days to get into ketosis and if you eat carbs then you have to start all over. I didnt say that you cant eat carbs. I SAID you can eat as much meat eggs and cheese you want and some veggies. THEN YOU START ADDING CARBS BACK IN!!!!!!!!

It is just like any lifestyle change. Atkins is for some people and ww is for some and counting calories is for some.

I know the book has more stuff in it. BUt that is the basics of Atkins... and yes I have read the book.....

09-24-2007, 03:03 PM
wow that breakfast sounds awesome ~ i'm SO switching to Atkins! hahah just kidding ;)

I won't bash it, because it can work for some -- it worked for me for about 3 months and 35 pounds !!! of course, then I ate a cookie and 45 pounds came screaming back on to me ;)

09-24-2007, 03:33 PM
Hmmm.... Well we always say that any diet only "works" for as long as you stick to it, Atkins is certainly no exception. What some find relatively easy to stick with, others find difficult. It's not always a matter of ease either, it's just a matter of what people are WILLING to stick with. Cause' let's face it, all the plans in the world are difficult to stick with at times. Oh brother, don't we all know THAT? :dizzy:

09-24-2007, 07:49 PM
What I have found with Atkins is that my carb cravings went completely away, my binges are short and small and non-sugar, and I have gained the ability to go right back on plan after a slip. And I feel physically better than I have in years, my lipids, blood sugar, and bp have improved enormously in 4 mos, and my GP is thrilled with me and said WHAT ON EARTH ARE YOU DOIJNG? I've never seen changes like these in this amount of time!

This is not effortless because I have to exercise a little -- gasp -- mindfulness and self restraint, but it is so far the easiest plan to stick to I have ever tried. During induction I ate like the lady you mentioned, and lost 12 pounds in 2 weeks. Remember, none of us start out on any diet, accustomed to eating reasonable portion sizes. Within the first month, my appetite had reduced to reasonable portion sizes. Now I cannot imagine being able to stuff down the sheer quantities that I used to eat. I am absolutely satisfied, and I do not feel at all deprived. This is the first diet in, say, 40 years during which I have not felt deprived. Like Azure, I have to pay attention and make sure I get enough calories. If I'm not paying attention, they fall too low, and as my body weight decreases I'd have no room to decrease cals.

I am confident that by the time I have transitioned to maintenance the way that is suggested, it will be completely normal to me and I will not really want to eat any other way. Even now he gooey sweet pseudo-food seems repulsive to me. I don't even like the smell of it anymore. My body has come to recognize and appreciate real food, not overprocessed chemical goo.

Atkins is the best thing I've ever done for myself. And as far as people not being able to stick to it goes, the vast (vast!) majority of people fail within a year no matter what they're doing. Remember, we here at 3FC are the exception. If other people's failures were grounds for ruling out a particular plan, we'd just have to say categorically that there isn't anything that works, and we know that just isn't true. We're surrounded by proof here at 3FC.

09-24-2007, 08:03 PM
The woman next to me ordered this: 6 eggs, scrambled with cheddar and mozzerella cheese, 6 strips of bacon cooked soft, and 4 sausage patties.

I could never eat all of that! Then again, I am not a huge "breakfast" type foods fan. I like my eggs deviled, and I suppose I could devour 6 of them if I was unchecked :P BUT ...

09-24-2007, 08:10 PM
Ha ha.... I am definately not saying that I couldn't have eaten that breakfast at some point in my life. I am sure that I have had 6 pieces of bacon and 6 eggs at once before. No sausage, though, I hate those patty things. What I was surprized by was that she ate like that and was obviously very proud of herself for her "control" by eschewing the bread. I don't care about research, its absurd to think that you can eat like that and lose weight and be healthy and maintain it. Oh, and for a reference point, I called her a "Very large woman". She was similar in size to me. I consider myself a "very large woman" also! If I were to eat a 1500 calorie breakfast, regardless of what it consisted of, I would not lose weight.

09-24-2007, 08:20 PM
Oh yeah I know! I hate sausage too. I was just trying to point out that while that breakfast as obvious a monstrosity, but we can't think of ourselves as any better, not saying you or anyone was, but I will admit that was my initial reaction and then I thought to myself, "You know Rakel, just because you wouldn't be tempted with a breakfast like that doesn't mean you don't struggle in other areas."

09-24-2007, 08:47 PM
I was assuming the woman was more my size, just because it's just my experience that when someone big adds the "very" adjective it usually means someone larger than them (it's funny how often I've heard women my size and larger refer to someone else as "very" large to mean someone even bigger than they are, as if they themselves don't warrant the same adjective).

I would agree though, that very few people have the metabolism to pull of a 1500 calorie breakfast and still lose weight. I still think though that she is very new to the diet. Whether or not she is able to lose a little weight eating this way, largely depends on what she was eating before. It also may seem ridiculous that she sees herself as virtuous for refusing the bread, but it may be the first step for her. She will learn, or she will not lose, it's that simple.

One advantage, I think of lower carb plans is the hunger drop that most people experience. This is another reason I think she's new to this. My guess is she will be eating much differently after she's been off of starchy carbohydrates a little longer. My point was just that even though many low carbers start out quite a bit like this woman (believing they can and will want to eat huge amounts of protein and fat in the long-term and still feel great and lose weight), they tend not to stick with this behavior and mentality, in part because the reduced carbs do reduce the uncontrolled hunger that a high carb diet sometimes produces.

09-24-2007, 10:42 PM

I have two books by Dr. Atkins and a few years I really did try to follow it. Yes, you can lose weight eating what looks like a "heart attack waiting to happen" type food. You do not eat carbs. I love meat so I thought I would really love it. You do limit fruit and dairy on it. According to the statistics that I have read, that people lose no more or less weight on that program than any other program and seem to keep it off as long as other programs.

My mom is a diabetic and she meets regularly with a registered dietician. When she told me what her diabetic diet was I asked her "Are you on a low carb diet?" She said she didn't know. I had a pocketbook Atkins carb counter book that I sent her so she could count her carbs which is how she has managed to keep her diabetes in check and her weight has gotten so low she is smaller than my sister and I!!

I would say that I am on a modified low carb diet primarily because of my family history of diabetes on both sides. I love meat and I do eat steak although I don't have much fat in the rest of my food plan. I do not eat processed foods and rarely eat baked goods. I have normal cholesterol and blood pressure. I would think that those factors would be something to consider when deciding which program you would best benefit from.

Side note: I know a woman who was almost 400 lbs whom I worked with who went on Dr. Atkins diet, lost 40 lbs and then became pregnant for the first time in her 40s even though she had been married for over 20 years!!

I'm not saying that this could happen to this woman but I would be "careful".

Hopes that helps!

12-21-2007, 05:01 PM
This woman is a classic example of why atkins has a such bad name. Why right now the atking "works for some" and not for everyone. The ones that it doesnt work are just like this lady. I am sure after 2 months she is going to Bash the atkins.
Another reasons why the atkins doesnt work is in todays world you are going to MSG cured bacon ham with nitrates. The cheese you get is processed and can contains transfats.
Dr. Atkins formulated his diet assuming a "perfect world" where there were no endocrine messing chemicals in food.
I was on a raw vegetable diet and all of a sudden my weight loss stopped. I was bouncing up and down after losing 22 pounds in 15 days. With raw vegetables I was only consuming 500 calories a day.
When i joined this forum i realised that I was eating too little calories. I knew I had to increase my calorie intake to atleast 1200. I decided to go the atkins way. So now I am making up the remaining 700 calories with lots of fried fish(fried in clarified butter).
Since I have been on the atkins I have put on 1 kg in 4 days!!!!. But i dont blame the atkins Because I DID NOT FOLLOW IT :-(.
What I have learnt in atkins is if you eat carbs while you are on a high fat/protien diet you are going to put on weight like crazy. All the fats are going to be directly stored.
I was unkowingly eating a 1000 calorie breakfast. And a 1000 calories before dinner snack. The 1000 calorie breakfast contained around 200 carbs. Which did it for me. I realised that i still cannot continue having so many calories.
Right Now I am back on my raw vegetable diet which roughly gives me 300 calories and 20 carbs.(breakfast and dinner). Then I am going to have fried fish and 1 cup boiled mung sprouts for lunch. that would be around 400 calories and 5 carbs. and the same amount of fish for dinner with my raw vegetables. I will be substituting the fish with Jumbo prawns and roasted chicken(when I get my hands on organic) and some roasted lamb meat from time to time so that it doesnt get boring.
I want to ask some expert if this would be a good atkings My carb would be around 24 max 30 Is this a good. More important will it work for me.
I think I should open a new thread for this query
Anyways I feel that biggest problem with atkins is if you are a vegetarian. I was planning to go vegetarian and then I stalled it as I realised I will not be able to maintain a healthy calorie count.(unless I started eating butter with a spoon).
The biggest problem is if you binge my mistake on high carbs the weight is going to come back(especially if you are still eating the high fats). I am excercising and will be comfortably doing heavy weight and walking 10 kms uphill walking without any effort in a month.(now I really struggle). So I am assuming that increasing my carbs to around 200(and reducing fats) around that time should not make me put on weight like I am doing right now.
My plan is after I lose another 40 pounds I will then concentrate on losing weight only through excercise and will start eating a balanced diet.
Excercise is a must because I dont think I can diet forever. I dont think it is practical. I would be a paranoid calorie watcher.

12-21-2007, 05:49 PM
I agree with those who have said that Atkins is very, VERY misunderstood. Sure, you can lose weight be eating what looks like a heart attack on a plate, but in the long run, are you REALLY doing anything for your health that way? I do think that many people just go on Atkins assuming that they have license to eat as they wish without ever considering fats or calories.

My mom was on Atkins for several years, and she had great success with it. She lost about 70 pounds, and felt great...until she fell off the wagon and started eating carbs again. Atkins is like any other plan or program...you have to be willing to stick to it FOR LIFE.

I really admire the people who can truly stick with Atkins and have success with it, just because I tend to be such a carb addict.

12-21-2007, 06:13 PM
Does anyone know of anyone who used a low-carb diet to lose weight, then transitioned to a different way of healthy eating like whole-foods and calorie counting to maintain? Perhaps I should start another thread on this. I'm really interested in knowing!

12-21-2007, 06:19 PM

Here's the thread!

12-22-2007, 11:31 AM
When I did atkins I ate nothing but wings for 4 months and lost 70 lbs.

Of course, I gained it all back and then some.

If you don't eat carbs your body has no choice but to burn it's fat reserves? It's been years since I've done it, but I think that's how it goes.

12-25-2007, 03:02 PM
Just the thought of eating all that food on one sitting makes me ill. For me, it'd probably be 2 scrambled eggs, 2 pieces of bacon and one sausage patty and a coffee with 2 creams... I'd be stuffed. (not to mention ticked off at myself for eating so much! LOL)

12-25-2007, 05:36 PM
I, too, am still trying to wrap my head around 6 eggs. Forget the meat. 6 eggs? I have trouble choking down more than 2. Bacon, I have no trouble with. Sausage, meh. I can take it or leave it.

01-01-2008, 10:29 PM
Hi everyone

I know that this thread has gone on for some time, but I have to say that I can't understand how anyone can be that hungry at 1 meal. Maybe it was her first day on Atkins and she wanted to make sure she didn't feel deprived? I dunno.

I started Atkins 3 days ago and I've lost 6 pounds (water). I'm doing the Ketone sticks, which I've read on some of the posts isn't accurate, but I'm not putting all my hope in them. I measured my ketone last night and it was nothing and then this morning it was moderate, which was a huge jump.

I've done Atkins a few times before, and I've read the book, but I think listening to other people's Atkins stories may help me this time. I've actually planned out meals for the week - fun stuff so I don't feel like I'm missing out. I'm going to do taco night and I'll just make a taco salad minus the shell. Saturday is usually pizza night, so I got pepperoni, ital. sausage, peppers, mushrooms, black olives, olive oil and mozz. cheese and diced tomatoes, and I'm going to make a pizza topping casserole. My husband can still order his pizza. I also made a cheeseburger salad earlier this week and couldn't even finish it. I've been super stuffed on this diet, which is great.

01-01-2008, 10:51 PM
My son was on it and the pounds melted off, However, he has gained back all the weight:(