Atkins Diet Foods to Eat
What are some Atkins diet foods to eat?
A complete list of approved foods can be found on the "Official Atkins Acceptable Induction Foods List". All foods should be low in carbohydrates and as unprocessed as possible. A meat lover's diet, Atkins allows the consumption of all fish, fowl, meat, shellfish and eggs.
Processed meats (such as deli cut or sandwich packaged meats) often have added carbohydrates and sugars, and so should be eaten less liberally. Try to avoid meat and fish products cured with nitrates, which are known carcinogens. Also beware of products that are not exclusively meat, fish or fowl, such as imitation fish, meatloaf and breaded foods.
Finally, do not consume more than four ounces of organ meats a day. You don't have to remove the skin and fat from meat or fowl as you prepare them.
An excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids, essential to proper brain functioning and many other body functions, can be found in abundance in wild-caught salmon and other cold-water fish, which are a couple of good Atkins diet foods to eat.. Note that oysters and mussels have higher carbohydrate content than other shellfish, so limit them to four ounces per day.
When on the diet, you can enjoy three to four ounces daily of full-fat, firm, soft and semi soft aged cheeses such as cheddar, cream cheese, gouda, etc, which are some possible Atkins diet foods to eat. Remember that all cheeses have some carbohydrate content. Therefore, if you know one cheese to have higher carb content, restrict intake accordingly. Generally 1 ounce of cheese equates to 1 gram of carbohydrate.
Note that cottage cheese, farmer's cheese and other fresh cheeses are not permitted during Induction. No "diet" cheese, cheese spreads or whey cheeses are permitted either. Individuals with known yeast symptoms, dairy allergy or cheese intolerance must avoid cheese. Imitation cheese products are not allowed, except for soy or rice cheese - but always check the carbohydrate content.
Most, though not all, vegetables are permitted as Atkins diet foods to eat. Certain vegetables (notably potatoes) have high carb content. The following vegetables can be eaten in quantities of two to three cups per day: artichokes, asparagus, bamboo shoots, green beans, bok choy, broccoli, broccoli rabe, brussels sprouts, cauliflower, chard, and celery. These are mostly green salad vegetables and high in phytonutrients, providing a good source of fiber.
If a vegetable, such as spinach or tomato, cooks down significantly, it must be measured raw so as not to underestimate its carb count. The following vegetables are higher in carbohydrate content than the salad vegetables and the serving must be cut down to one or two cups per day: beets, carrots, peas, pumpkin, squash, taro, tomato (and its products - juice, sauce, etc), yams, and yucca. High carbohydrate vegetables include corn, parsnips, all potatoes (sweet, yellow, white and so forth). They should be eaten rarely, if at all.
The Induction Phase does not permit most of the vegetables in the second category as Atkins diet foods to eat, as they add too much in the way of carbohydrates to the daily diet. It also requests that you cut down consumption from the first category. The Lifetime Maintenance phase notes that the majority of your carbohydrate intake should come from the vegetables in category one (the green salad vegetables).
All spices to taste, but make sure none contain added sugar. Likewise for salad dressing, use oil and vinegar (but not balsamic vinegar, which contains sugar) or lemon juice and herbs and spices. Prepared salad dressings without added sugar such as Ranch, Blue Cheese and Italian and no more than two carbs per tablespoon serving are permissible.
Good nutrition essentials include many fats, especially certain oils such as olive oil. On the Atkins diet, all vegetable oils can be consumed as Atkins diet foods to eat, the best being canola, walnut, soybean, grape seed, sesame, sunflower and safflower oils, especially if labeled "cold-pressed" or "expeller-pressed".
You should not cook polyunsaturated oils, such as corn, soybean and sunflower oil, at high temperatures or allow to brown or smoke. You can use butter; however, margarine should be avoided. Though not high in carbohydrates, margarine usually has trans fats (hydrogenated oils), which have proven to be hazardous to health if consumed regularly. (Some non-hydrogenated margarine can be obtained in health-food stores.)
Water is among the Atkins diet foods to eat - be sure to drink a minimum of eight eight-ounce glasses of water each day. Avoid excessive caffeine, which may cause unstable blood sugar and should be avoided by those who suspect caffeine dependency. Grain beverages (coffee substitutes) fall on the banned list. Alcoholic beverages are also not permitted during Induction; those low in carbohydrates are an option, in moderation, in later phases only.
The diet has received as much attention about what foods to avoid, as it has for its benefits. Generally, all foods on the "banned" list have a high carbohydrate and / or sugar content. The opposite is usually true for Atkins diet foods to eat.
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