There are many views for and against the atkins diet. Being a low carb diet means that it is quite opposite as compared to the recommendations of the American Diabetes Association that suggests that diabetics embark on a diet that contains high levels of carbohydrates. Many have also asked can the atkins diet cause diabetes, to which the obvious answer is ‘no’.
The diet suggested by the American Diabetic Association suggests that diabetics should eat foods that contain around 50% carbohydrates, 30% fats and 20% proteins. The problem is that such high levels of carbohydrates can end up increasing blood sugar levels after each meal since carbohydrates convert to sugar once inside the body. Hence if a diabetic eats a large serving in a single sitting then he/she is certain to have spiked levels of blood sugar within a couple of hours of having that meal. Diabetics will therefore need to check blood sugar levels continuously and might also require additional medications to control their blood sugar levels after a heavy meal.
On the other hand, the atkins diet consists of foods that are low in carbohydrates and high in protein and fat. Since the diet is low carb, diabetics do not experience spiking of blood sugar levels after each meal, even if it is slightly heavy. The high protein levels also ensure that diabetics retain enough energy to start an exercise program that can enable them to build new muscles. The high fat content will ensure that diabetics remain content until their next meal instead of feeling hungry after a short time. Hence, instead of raising blood sugar levels like most other diets, the atkins diet actually helps in lowering blood sugar levels and diabetics with type ii diabetes can also become lucky enough to stop their medications if they manage to keep their sugar levels within safe limits.
The atkins diet involves avoiding refined fatty and sugary foods including those made of flour. The diet also discourages people from eating high-starch vegetables, most fruits, breads and grains. Instead, diabetics are advised to consume low-starch vegetables, beef, pork, fish, poultry, eggs, cheese and soy. These foods are rich in protein and fat and contain low levels of carbohydrates. The diet itself is in 4 phases and the first phase, which is also the toughest, is designed to induce a state of ketosis in the diabetic’s body so that the fat present in the body starts burning away. The other three phases offer diabetics to slightly increase the carbohydrate content and the last phase is designed to be followed for life. Diabetics that exercise and refrain from smoking, drinking and caffeine can experience rapid weight loss and an increase in energy levels from the first week itself.
The atkins diet can thus help in regulating blood sugar levels and definitely do not spike them up. Diabetics can start on this diet provided they consult their dr and nutritionist and also monitor their blood sugar levels to ensure that the levels do not drop down too much. Hence the answer to can the atkins diet cause diabetes is a definite ‘no’ and this diet in fact helps maintain blood sugar levels at a regular low if the diet is followed honestly.
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