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The Atkins Nutritional Approach, popularly known as the Atkins Diet is definitely the most marketed and well-known diet program of all low-carbohydrate diets on the market today.

The Atkins business has been highly successful due to the popularity of the diet, and is considered the iconic symbol of the low-carb products.

However, nothing lasts forever and various factors have led to adecrease in it’s success. That’s why a company called Atkins Nutritionals of Ronkonkoma, New York, founded by Dr. Atkins in 1989, filed for bankruptcy in July of 2005. The Atkins diet was special in many things. It promesed that not only will you lose weight and not be hungry with a low-carbohydrate diet, but you'll also be on the road to better heart health and memory function, as well as other wellness benefits.

 History of the Atkins diet

This diet was created by Dr. Robert Atkins (1930-2003) and popularized in a series of books, starting with Dr. Atkins' Diet Revolution in 1972. This lone cardiologist stood up against the medical establishment by warning us of the dangers of sugar and carbs. He was called unflattering names by his peers and brought up before a senate committee, but nothing deterred him. In his revised book, Dr. Atkins' New Diet Revolution, Atkins updated some of his ideas, but remained faithful to the original concepts. The Atkins Nutritional Approach gained widespread popularity in 2003 and 2004. At the height of its popularity one out of every eleven adults was on the diet.

Diet basis

People that invented and supported this diet claimed there are two main facts about Western eating habits:

    * refined carbohydrates particularly sugar, flour, and high-fructose corn syrup are the main cause of obesity
    * saturated fat is overrated as a nutritional problem, because only trans-fats from sources such as hydrogenated oils need to be avoided.

The bottom line is that the diet is based on the theory that overweight people eat too many carbohydrates.

The truth is that our bodies burn both fat and carbohydrates for energy, but it is also a fact that carbs are used first. So, by drastically reducing carbs and eating more protein and fat, our bodies naturally lose weight by burning stored body fat more efficiently.
Supposedly, Dr. Atkins was claiming that many eating disorders are the result of hyperinsulinism, or excessive secretion of insulin which comes through eating too many carbohydrates.
Besides some nutritional supplements, exercise is also considered an equally important element. Atkins involves restriction of the intake of carbohydrates in order to switch the body's metabolism from burning glucose to burning fat. This process, which is also called lipolysis, begins when the body enters the state of ketosis as a consequence of running out of carbohydrates to burn. Although many people don’t know it, ketosis is an entirely normal state but can cause troubles if prolonged.

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