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Atkins Diet Yes or No

As of now, January 2005, more than half of all north Americans are struggling with obesity. The 'quick fix' for 'fat' for the last 40+ years, becoming ever more popular, has become the Atkins Diet. The Atkins Diet was first popularized in the U. S. Air Force during the 1960's.


If in doubt, or if you have questions, you should consult your physician and, if possible, consult a second physician for a possible different opinion. The author does not bear any responsibility for your decisions nor for the outcome of your actions based upon those decisions.


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 The first myth: many dieters who use this program believe that calories and fat do not matter when eating low carb food, but in some cases this has proven to be fatal. Depending upon your particular body chemistry, when eating high fat food your cholesterol could climb and climb, leading to a heart attack or stroke. Also, it has now been proven that the older we become the less our body is able to metabolize the 'high fat' portion of the Atkins 'lo carb' diet, leading to additional dietary and health problems.

Looking for some inspiration? The Gout Haters Cookbooks series by Jodi Schneiter are just what you need. Jodi has written three cookbooks that focus on creating delicious meals suitable for all the family that fit in with a low purine diet. Click on the link below for more information:

A build up of uric acid that develops into gout can result from:

The first thing you must understand is that, across the entire human spectrum, each of us is very different from one another in the chemical makeup of our body. Thus, each of us, individually, should have our own highly personalized, custom built diet, created by a dietician using a chemical makeup assessment, usually a $200 hair analysis, of our particular body type and individual nutritional needs. So far as I know, this technology and this type dietary assessment is still available only through certain holistic health practitioners and it is becoming more and more expensive. As an example, it typically costs now between $200 and $300, whereas in the mid-1970's it cost between $100 and $150.

What is it? Its actually two things: A food diet and exercise ' yes, simple exercise, like walking a mile a day. A completely balanced, restricted calorie, diet containing a little bit of everything. Eat three meals a day, get your sweets, carbs, veggies, fruits, juices, protein and keep it to 1200 calories a day. Eat your breakfast and go out and walk the dog ' if you don't have one, take your neighbor's. Give this diet a year of your life, weigh yourself every Monday and keep track of your weight, see where you are with it'..and make the change for the rest of your life. When you get to your target weight you may increase the diet to 1600 calories a day.

Although denied by the medical profession for the last three decades, diet does influence your pain... Prior to the denial phase of medicine it was and in some circles still a known factor that certain foods and drinks trigger certain problems. For instance, Joint problems have been found to be exacerbated by the use of alcohol, liver and other organ meats. The most famous joint problem recognized is "Gout," even though the pharmaceutical companies have tried to convince the world this is not true, it certainly is and gout suffers who have had direct results of those foods will tell you... Chemicals concocted by the pharmaceutical industry does help with a few cases but the digestive system is suffering the affects as well as the liver and kidneys which have to filter out the foreign matter in the body! As we get older our digestive system does not work as fast nor as thorough as it needs to and therefore medications can create as many or more problems than they help!

Sometimes, even if a person lives a healthy lifestyle, abstains from alcohol or drinks it modestly, they can experience a condition that mirrors gout, but is in actuality, a different arthritic condition altogether known as pseudogout. To help you understand the differences between these two, the following is a breakdown of the causes, symptoms and treatments for each condition.

If your body type and chemical makeup is suitable for the Atkins Diet then by all means use it. Remember that there are several similar alternatives out there which may be more suitable than a strict Atkins, to include some of Dr. Atkins own later work and recommendations. If you have health challenges, to include a tendency for gout or actually suffer from gout, or have diabetes or any of several other disorders, the Atkins diet is definitely something you need to avoid.

The third myth: Mention the Atkins Diet and most people's reaction is 'Oh, yes, the 'high protein' diet.' Not true at all --- it's a 'Low Carb' diet ' protein intake remains unchanged. Some carbs only, not all, are restricted (versus eliminated completely); fats, particularly in older people, need to be restricted; protein should be kept to 4-6 ounce portions per meal, the lower values for breakfast and lunch. What you need to increase is your intake of high-fiber foods such as celery, etc.

* LUNCH: A fresh salad with vegetable, such as mushrooms, carrots, tomatoes, radishes, celery and low-fat dressing; a four-ounce serving of protein, such as fish, chicken, turkey, tofu or beans; one bread serving; a piece of fruit.

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Stunning breakthroughs in medical research demonstrate that you can literally feed your aching bones and joints exactly what they need to move more freely and with less discomfort. Taking certain nutrients to eliminate discomfort, rebuilding deteriorating join structures, and restore freedom of movement is rapidly moving into mainstream medical consciousness. Long overdue but still not fast enough... In fact the doctors at Johns Hopkins have developed a "bone/joint diet? That they believe can help alleviate the burden of stiff, inflamed joints. (Diet to follow)

The Johns Hopkins researchers say that you should experiment with different foods to ascertain which ones will help you and which ones will cause you pain. With over 100 different kinds of bone/joint problems classified under the heading of "arthritis" it is easy to understand why experimenting with different foods must be left up to you. Also as explained by the Johns Hopkins papers, "The more pressure and weight on your joints, the more they will hurt. Even and extra 10 pounds stresses the joints." A desirable reason to lose weight of plagued with joint/bone problems!

When looking for low purine foods for your diet, you can find a great variety of things you can have that won't cause any issues with your gout. If you love thick soups, you can have them as long as they are made with low fat milk. Cheese and milk are fine, but again, they should be low in fat. You can also enjoy things like gelatin and a great variety of fruits and fruit juices. Most sweets are just fine, but remember to watch the calories if you are attempting to get your weight down. You can also enjoy things like pasta, and peanut butter is okay for a treat.

There are three major misconceptions to the Atkins diet. The first common myth is many people believe this means don't worry about the amount of calories or fat you eat so long as its not carbs. The second common myth is many people believe all carbohydrates are equally bad. The third common myth is that the Atkins 'Lo-Carb' diet is actually a 'Hi-Protein' diet. All of these, however, are enormous misconceptions.

According to researchers at Johns Hopkins, "There's no denying that there is a strong connection between what you eat and how you feel, and the difference is likely to become more and more apparent the older you get." (Johns Hopkins Health 2000, www.intelihealth.org)

 
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When choosing your low purine foods, you can have some medium purine rated foods with them about once a day if it does not bother you. Those would include some meats like beef, pork, and possibly chicken. Some seafood choices are relatively safe as well. You should experiment to find what bothers you and what works out well. As long as you work at limiting the purines, you are going to feel much better each day. You might want to have lobster bisque on occasion, as long as you limit your portions, and don't have any other medium purine foods for the rest of the day.

Under normal circumstances, the purines you find in many foods are broken down into uric acid, and the body gets rid of it without any problems. However, for someone with gout, getting rid of this uric acid is problematic, and the result is painful crystals forming in the joints - leading to gout pain. When this happens, there are medications that can help with the pain, but one of the best things a person can do it to is to find low purine foods and make them a major part of their diet. This can offer much-needed relief for most.

* AFTERNOON SNACK: One fruit or raw vegetable; one serving of bread; a glass of low-fat milk or a cup of low-fat yogurt. * DINNER: A four-ounce serving of protein, such as fish, tofu, chicken, beans, turkey or beef; one carbohydrate, such as a baked potato, rice, bread or pasta; one cup of steamed vegetables (avoid starches like peas or corn); a fresh salad with low-fat dressing.

Doctors also targeted allergies or intolerance for dairy products, preservatives found in a wide variety of foods and drugs along with members of the nightshade family as possible culprits for joint problems. In addition, eating or drinking anything tainted with Salmonella or other bacteria has been shown to provoke the immune system to attack the joints, a condition known as "Reiter's syndrome."

A Diet to Promote Joint Comfort From Johns Hopkins Health 2000 * BREAKFAST: One piece or serving of fresh fruit; one slice of bread or bowl of cereal; one protein, such as an egg or a cup of yogurt.

The true danger of the Atkins Diet, however, lies in the fact that, for people who already have health challenges, the Atkins Diet actually worsens some conditions and creates other health challenges that did not exist before the Atkins Diet. The worst of these is Gout. If you have a tendency to suffer gout, no matter how well controlled you have it, a strict Atkins Diet will create a severe gout condition and gout attack for you. If you merely had the tendency for gout with no active gout, the Atkins Diet will precipitate an actual condition of gout in your body. A severe case of gout requires medical intervention to correct as well as long-term dietary control and change. The long-term danger of gout is an increased tendency for heart attack and stroke. See Native's Gift for one proven help for gout.

The Atkins Diet is very simple --- restrict your carbohydrate intake. And guess what? It actually works. But Dr. Atkins, after the initial few years of his popularized diet, began to make modifications and refinements to the original basic diet. And several other people have taken the basic Atkins Diet, modified it just a little, and come up with a new and very workable diet.

* EVENING SNACK: A fruit with one graham cracker square, one low-fat cookie, or a half cup of sorbet or low-fat frozen yogurt. Combining a healthful diet and stress reduction, pain can all but be eliminated in most instances...

And not just the Atkins Diet. Any and all diets which highly restrict or eliminate one of the essential food groups we all need to maintain optimal health is equally bad. Stop the insanity and use a REAL diet --- the only proven diet which will work for virtually everyone.

The reason why the Atkins Diet works is because your body metabolizes its stored fat (carbohydrates) in order to burn --- digest --- the protein, fiber and fat you are eating. The Atkins Dieters tend to leave out several food groups, including fruit and vegetables, since they are 'high carb food', and then tend to grab a steak instead, which has very low carbohydrates.

Disclaimer: This article in no way should be taken as 'medical advice' on any product, condition or course of action, nor does it constitute in any way 'medical advice' endorsing any specific product, specific result, nor any possible cure for any condition or problem. This article is meant as a source of information upon which you may base your decision as to whether or not you should begin using any vitamin, mineral and/or herbal supplement for better health, or begin using a 'greens' product as a dietary supplement.

You may have a hard time finding new foods to eat at first, but after a while you will get used to reading labels and figuring out what works for you and what does not. Any special diet requires a little thought and work, and the low purine foods diet is no exception. After a while though, reading and deciphering items in the store by reading through the ingredients list will become second nature, and you will become accustomed to knowing how to build your own menu with little thought. Feeling better should be all the motivation you need.

The second myth: The Atkins Diet is actually a 'Lo-Carb' diet, not a 'No-Carb' diet. What should be cut out are breads, rice and potatoes. Fresh fruits and vegetables should not be cut back and many should be somewhat increased. Finally, after the first month you can 'safely' add breads and potatos --- in limited quantities. One friend of mine eats 1 bite of breads/toasts, etc., served with his meals, such as garlic breads. One bite and not a morsel more.

Gout Gout is a form of arthritis that occurs suddenly, usually affecting the big toe, and causes severe painful attacks, tenderness and redness in the affected joint. An attack can last days or weeks. Gout is caused by a build up of uric acid which turns into uric acid crystals that are deposited into the joints causing them to become inflamed. The first attack of gout often occurs late at night.

About the author:
Loring Windblad has studied nutrition and exercise for more than
40 years, is a published author and freelance writer.

This article is Copyright 2005 by http://www.organicgreens.us,
http://www.organicgreens.ca and Loring Windblad. This article
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There are some general directions for a low purine diet, but always listen to your doctor's advice in addition to this information. A low purine diet is going to contain almost fifty percent carbohydrates each day, and no more than thirty percent of the diet each day should be made up of fats. The rest should be healthy and lower purine protein sources. Drinks that are normally not allowed on many special diets are actually encouraged. These include soda and coffee. The reason being as that they act as directics, helping your body to flush out the excess uric acid. It's important to drink plenty of water as well to keep your body well hydrated. Alcohol, however, in most forms is not something you should be drinking.

This is ridiculous. Why? Because the elimination of carbohydrates and the reduction of the fresh fruits and vegetables actually throws your health into a major imbalance. Overloading your unbalanced diet by an excess of protein intake (adding that steak, above) to 'increase the volume' to a satisfying level merely exacerbates this imbalance.


Gout Haters Cookbook - The Low Purine Diet


 
 
     
 
 





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