UNDERSTANDING THE SOUTH BEACH DIET LOSING WEIGHT, GAINING LIFE
The South Beach Diet is not low-carb.
Nor is it low-fat. The South Beach Diet teaches you to rely on
the right carbs and the right fats-the good ones-and enables you
to live quite happily without the bad carbs and bad fats. As a
result, you're going to get healthy and lose weight-somewhere
between 8 and 13 pounds in the first two weeks alone. Here's how
you'll do it:
1: Banishing Your Cravings
Phase 2: Reintroducing Carbs
Phase 3: A Diet for Life.
1: Banishing Your Cravings Back to Top
What you'll eat: During Phase 1, you'll eat normal-size helpings
of meat, chicken, turkey, fish, and shellfish. You'll have plenty
of vegetables, eggs, cheese, and nuts. You'll have salads with
real olive oil in the dressing. You'll have three balanced meals
a day, and it will be your job to eat so that your hunger is satisfied.
a weight-loss plan more than the distressing sensation that you
need more food. No sane eating program expects you to go through
life feeling discomfort. You'll be urged to have snacks in the
midmorning and midafternoon, whether you want to or not. You'll
have dessert after dinner. You'll drink water, of course, plus
coffee or tea if you wish.
What you won't
eat: For the first 14 days you won't be having any bread, rice,
potatoes, pasta, or baked goods. No fruit, even. Before you panic:
You'll begin adding those things back into your diet again in
two weeks. But for right now, they're off-limits. No candy, cake,
cookies, ice cream, or sugar for two weeks, either. No beer or
alcohol of any kind. After this phase, you'll be free to drink
wine, which is beneficial for a variety of reasons. Not a drop
during the first two weeks, however.
Now, if you're
the kind of person who lives for pasta or bread or potatoes, or
if you believe that you can't get through a day without feeding
your sweet tooth (three or four times), let me tell you something:
You're going to be shocked at how painlessly two weeks will pass
without these foods. The first day or two may be challenging;
but once you weather that, you'll be fine.
It's not that
you'll have to fight your urges-the cravings will virtually disappear
during the first week. I say this with such confidence only because
so many overweight people who have already succeeded on this program
tell me so. The South Beach Diet may be new to you, but it has
existed for several years-long enough to have helped hundreds
of people lose weight easily and keep it off. - Back
2: Reintroducing Carbs
How you'll change: After two weeks, you will be somewhere between
8 and 13 pounds lighter than you are today. Most of that weight
will come off your midsection, so right away you'll notice the
difference in your clothes. It will be easier to zip your jeans
than it's been for some time. That blazer will close without a
But this will
be just the noticeable difference. What you won't be able to see
during those two weeks is how you'll have changed internally.
You will have corrected the way your body reacts to the very foods
that made you overweight.
switch inside you that had been turned on. Now, simply by modifying
your diet, you'll have turned it off. The physical cravings that
ruled your eating habits will be gone, and they'll stay away for
as long as you stick with the program. The weight loss doesn't
happen because you're trying to eat less. It will happen because
you'll be eating fewer of the foods that created those old bad
urges-fewer of the foods that caused your body to store excessive
eat now: As a result of that change, you will continue losing
weight after the 14-day period ends; even though you will have
started adding some of those banished foods back into your life.
You'll still be on a diet, but if it's bread you love, you'll
have bread. If it's pasta, you'll reintroduce that. Rice or cereal,
too. Potatoes. Fruit will definitely be back. Chocolate? If it
makes you feel good, sure.
You will have to pick and choose which of these indulgences you
permit yourself. You won't be able to have all of them all the
time. You'll learn to enjoy them a little differently than before-maybe
a little less enthusiastically. But you will enjoy them again
in Phase 2 and continue losing weight until you reach your goal.
How long it takes depends on how much you need to lose. People
lose, on average, a pound or two a week in Phase 2. Once you hit
your target, you'll switch to an even more liberal version of
the program, which will help you to maintain your ideal weight.
- Back to Top
3: A Diet For Life Back to Top
This is the stage that lasts the rest of your life. When you get
to this point, you'll notice that this plan feels less like a
diet and more like a way of life. You'll be eating normal foods,
after all, in normal-size portions. You can then feel free to
forget all about the South Beach Diet, as long as you remember
to live by its few basic rules.
The final change: As you're losing weight and altering how your
body responds to food, a third change will be taking place. This
one will significantly alter your blood chemistry, to the long-term
benefit of your cardiovascular system. You will improve invisible
factors that only cardiologists and heart patients worry about.
Thanks to this final change, you will substantially increase your
odds of living long and well-meaning you will maintain your health
and vitality as you age.
You may start on the South Beach Diet hoping just to lose weight.
If you adopt it and stay with it, you will surely accomplish that
much-but you'll also do a lot more for yourself, all of it very
good. I'm not exaggerating when I say that this diet can, as a
fringe benefit, save your life. - Back
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