Sunday, 11 January 2009

All-New Atkins Advantage diet which lets you eat those forbidden carbs and STILL lose weight - Really?

The UK national newspaper the Daily Mail has been running a series this week on the so-called All-New Atkins Advantage diet. Seasoned low carbers and Atkins Dieters have been struggling to see how the diet is 'new', apart from the addition of some of the Atkins Nutritionals bars and other products in the induction phase, and possibly more 'carby' products such as bread at an earlier stage than in previous version of the diet.

I say possibly, because if you read the article carefully, you see that, as ever, you bring these more carby foods back as and when you can tolerate them. And, as ever, most people who need the Atkins Diet or another low carb diet in the first place will find they cannot lose weight when they include these products. So much for the attention-grabbing headlines 'The All New Atkins Diet Plan which lets you eat those forbidden carbs and STILL lose weight'.

I also took issue with the Daily Mail's explanation of 'net carbs'. Although correct for a North American audience, it was factually incorrect and very misleading for a UK audience and for readers in most other countries. I submitted a 'comment' explaining this to the online version of the Daily Mail, but they declined to publish this fairly vital clarification (or issue a clarification of their own). So, for those who are unaware that calculating 'net' carbs is mostly only an issue for our low carbing friends in North America, here is my comment that the Daily Mail felt unable to publish:

"The advice in this article on calculating the net carbs is incorrect for the UK, Europe and most countries except the US and Canada. The article is taken from a book written for an American audience, and in North America, nutrition labelling is different. There, labels list fibre as a sub-category of carbohydrate, hence the need to subtract the fibre to get the net carbs. Elsewhere, including the UK, fibre is shown as an entirely separate category. So in the UK, the carbohydrate value IS the net carbs. There's more information on this at"

It would have been so much more refreshing had the Daily Mail published an article about the new clinical studies that support the safety and efficacy of the original Atkins Diet, rather than this quick guide to doing the watered-down politically correct version of the diet recently put out by associates of Atkins Nutritionals, who now control the Atkins brand.

And as some dieters have said of the menus in the Daily Mail articles in the various Atkins/low carb online forums, why bother with such fussy menus and recipes when simpler ones are just as good? Those who find these and the menus in the Atkins New Diet Cookbook too fussy or difficult to shop and cook for may like to explore the Low Carb / Low GI Cookbook.

No comments: