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Diet & Nutrition Message Board

Diet & Nutrition Board Index

Re: Is Atkins Safe?
May 12, 2003
[quote]Originally posted by Rixtar:
[b]...Dr. Dean Ornish's low fat diet will work for more people LONGER than the Atkin's approach. The reason is quite simple...

Most individual's that have weight management issues are volume eater's and after the goal is met will mostly likely return to volume eating habits...[/b][/quote]

I would say that is an opinion not shared with those that have had success with and enjoy the low carbohydrate way of eating, myself included. I too am a volume eater and can eat until satisfied with the low carb approach. I was able to lose my weight by eating large volumes of food and really haven't changed much while in maintenance other than increasing my consumption of vegetables. Things like bread and potatoes no longer appeal to me and I don't eat them. I've been doing this for 4 years. Now a good 16 oz steak, salmon fillet, or 1/2 grilled chicken (with skin on!) is something I would have a hard time giving up.

Ultra low fat diets like Ornish's are completely unnatural for the human species from an evolutionary perspective. In my opinion, which is shared by many anthropologists, it is the increasing quantity of fats in the foods of our early ancestors that allowed our species to branch from that of many primates. By eating more concentrated sources of nutrients like that found in meat, our ancestors were able to develop proportionally larger brains (hey, your brain is mostly fat) and proportionally smaller digestive systems. Sticking with foods that are natural for a species is more likely to result in long term favorable health effects. I mean, you wouldn't expect a rabbit to thrive on meat anymore than you would expect a lion to thrive on grass. While the Atkins diet and the foods available today are less than ideal, the low carb approach does more closely resemble the hunter-gatherer diet of our ancestors than the low-fat, high-carbohydrate diets recommended so heavily since the 1980's (hey, if there is a fad diet here, that is it).

But the tide appears to be turning here of late with numerous articles questioning the low-fat dogma (Taubes in Science and NYTimes in particular) and several studies that did not find any negative cardiovascular health effects from the Atkins diet as expected.

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