Low Carb Diet

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Dr. Robert Atkins fought tooth and nail to show the world how a low-carb plan can improve weight loss, lower cholesterol levels, increase energy and enhance overall wellness. With the second low-carb boom, the late Dr. Atkins wasn't alone as plenty of other diet gurus hopped on the low-carb bandwagon, creating the likes of Protein Power, Carbohydrate Addicts Diet, The Zone, South Beach Diet, Sugar-Busters and others.

Low carb diets are also referred to as reduced carbohydrate, controlled carbohydrate and low glycemic diets. While some of the low-carb programs cut out starches and sugars, others concentrate on the glycemic index of the foods. The initial stages of low-carb diets are usually restrictive when it comes to carb intake.

However, the induction phase of Atkins is the most strict. Other plans allow for more carbohydrates, although the amount is less than the food pyramid calls for.

Although there are many different variations of the low-carb diet, the foundation is the same. They all call for a strict reduction of carbohydrate intake, replacing them with fats, fiber and proteins. When following a low-carb diet, at least 60 to 70 percent of caloric intake should come from fat with less than 10 percent coming from carbohydrates.