The South Beach Diet has been around for a long time and some people swear by it for weight loss. But what is it exactly and how does it work to help shed those pounds?
The South Beach Diet is the new black in the world of dieting. The South Beach Diet was originally created by Dr.Arthur Agatston, a leading cardiac physician. The diet was initially created to improve the heart-health of his patients. it was later discovered that, as a pleasant side effect, the patients on this diet were also losing a lot of weight.
Dr.Agatston claims that the South Beach Diet is not a low-fat or low carb diet, but instead it is a diet that focuses on acquiring the correct fats and carbs.
The South Beach Diet is formed around the glycemic index in which carbs are restricted in the first two weeks of beginning the diet and gradually replaced with carbs that contain a low glycemic index. Saturated fats are also replaced with unsaturated fats.
What is the South Beach Diet?
To understand the South Beach Diet, we first have to understand the process the carbs undergo when we consume them. Initially, the carbs consumed are broken down into sugar. This causes the sugar level in our blood to increase. The pancreas then releases hormone insulin to regulate the elevated sugar level in the blood. The South Beach Diet is generally built around the same module as other glycemic index diets.
A rapid increase in blood sugar occurs when foods that are rich in carbs is consumed. To counter this effect, large amounts are released by the pancreas. The resulting drop in blood sugar will cause a lack of energy and a lethargic feeling, which in turn makes you crave more carbs. If this cycle is allowed to continue, the chances are more than likely that you will end up gaining weight. Furthermore, the body is capable of becoming more and more immune to the action of insulin and the body will become more prone to storing fat.
In the first phase of The South Beach Diet, the restriction of carbs creates a disruption in the carbs/insulin cycle. This intermission resolves the problem of the insulin immunization. the restricted foods consists of mostly complex carbohydrates approximating rice, pasta, grains, as well as, fruits, milk, sugar and alcohol. In this phase, the diet revolves mainly around lean meat, fish and eggs. It is not uncommon for South Beach Dieters to lose up to 14 pounds in this phase.
Low GI carbs such as fruits, whole grain bread, cereals, pasta and skim milk are gradually reintroduced in the second phase of the South Beach Diet. The second phase is maintained until the target weight is realized.
In phase three, a wider array of foods are introduced. This phase is meant to be permanent and your weight is maintained throughout this phase. Appropriate snacking is recommended and there are no limits for meal portions but it is required that enough food is eaten to satisfy your needs.
The most difficult part of the south beach diet would be in the first phase where there is a major call for will power when extreme carb restriction is imposed.
There will be a lack of vitamins and minerals in this phase as well because the sources for fiber, vitamins and minerals are terminated. Nutrition experts do favor The South Beach Diet however as it basically follows the principals of healthy eating.