The South Beach Diet now includes things from other diets into a new healthier version of a low carbohydrate diet plan. It was founded by a respected cardiologist who was searching for a diet to help his heart patients live a healthier lifestyle. His book was released in 2003 and the diet has remained consistently popular.
The South Beach Diet reportedly does not cut out entire food groups or asks you to starve yourself. The distinct advantage to the South Beach diet is that it teaches people how foods work in the body, and how to lose weight for a lifetime.
Even though this particular diet plan was founded by a physician who uses it with his cardiovascular patients and has been popularized in the past years, you should also consult with your own primary care physician to determine if this particular plan will have negative effects on your current health status, medications you may be taking or other medical problems you may experience.
Based on Glycemic Index
The South Beach diet plan uses the Glycemic Index as an indicator of the types of sugars and carbohydrates that are acceptable in the diet.
Foods that are rated with a lower glycemic index number will keep you feeling fuller for a longer period of time and will result in a lower spike of your blood glucose. This means that the foods will not cause a large release of insulin into the blood stream to take care of the larger load of glucose.
When a large amount of insulin is released it can lead to that sugar ‘low’ many feel mid-afternoon.
Using the South Beach diet plan consists of three different stages. In the first stage, which takes approximately 2 weeks, the diet will severely limit the number of carbohydrates that the participant is able to eat.
This initial phase is often very challenging and many are not able to complete it. During this phase you may be faced with cravings and are limited by the number of foods that you would normally eat.
Water weight is the majority of weight lost during this time so your weight may fluctuate even during these weeks.
Before beginning the South Beach diet it is helpful for you to go through the house and eliminate all the foods that are not allowed in the first two weeks. Of course, this works only if you are the only one living in the house or if everyone is on the same plan.
More realistically, you may have to place foods that are off-limits to you on a special shelf in the refrigerator or in cabinets in the kitchen that you know are off-limits.
After the initial two weeks of the South Beach diet plan, you will focus on controlling your cravings. This is important in order to reintroduce foods that you may enjoy but so you will eat them in moderation.
These particular foods may not be healthy on their own, but eaten in moderation and in combination with other foods they are not damaging to your health.
As you are learning to control your cravings you will also be learning how to make permanent changes in your everyday diet. The changes lead to diet choices for years and will help you maintain healthy eating habits that lead to a healthier weight.
The human body cannot go without carbohydrates and fiber for very long.
There are healthy carbohydrates and fiber choices available but, during the initial few weeks, participants are limited in the number that they are allowed. This unfortunately also limits vitamins and minerals as well.
Although this is a temporary restriction, you should take a multivitamin and fiber supplement to offset these limitations. Using a vitamin and mineral supplement following the introduction of other foods is optional and, although recommended, it is difficult for most people to eat all the foods necessary to receive the vitamins and minerals for healthy life.
Weight loss is challenging to most people and necessary for some. The South Beach diet plan is a structured diet option that allows for some flexibility while losing weight and learning healthy lifestyle choices.
Although weight loss can happen on any diet using a negative calorie balance, for some the added structure as a way to add strength to their struggle and teach them good healthy lifestyle choices.