The majority of the questions I get are comments to my pages or posts. To make them more readily available to all, I will do my best to copy and paste them here.
Where can I get a copy of Dr. Atkins’ original book?
I found mine at a thrift store (actually, I found all the books written by Dr. Atkins at two thrift stores locally). You could also try yard sales, secondhand book stores or see if your library sells books. Ours does and it is wonderful (you may even be able to find a copy IN the library to check out). If that is not an option for you, search Amazon or Ebay for “Dr. Atkins’ Diet Revolution.” I prefer Amazon over other sites, since many people view some “old” books as collectibles and price them WAY too high. I do not have an Amazon store, so my shop is setup with links to many of my favorite items. Here is that link: Dr. Atkins Diet Revolution.
Can I (or why can’t I) eat “this” or “that” during induction (level 1)?
When you look at my About 1972 Atkins page (About 1972 Atkins) and read the book, Dr. Atkins has a list of the various foods to eat during phase 1. He also gives detailed reasons why some foods are not allowed (which is why it is important to find a copy of the book). Do you have to eat any or all of the foods listed? No. Heck, I tried like crazy to like blue cheese simply because of Dr. Atkins’ love for it. I really did try, in various forms, but no matter what I just could not adapt to the flavor. If you look at the foods he lists, they are all low in total carbohydrates (and he did not use net carbs then). So, take that into consideration when choosing any foods not on the list. If, for any reason, you attempt to justify eating a particular food, then you probably should not be eating it yet.
Do I have to give up artificial sweeteners?
That is a decision only you can make. I know there is a huge “you must give up all artificial everything” movement out there but if it will keep you from wanting to stab someone, why give them up? I use artificial sweeteners every day. I use Sweet N Low in my morning coffee (switched back to it from Splenda because I use less for a “cleaner” sweetness). I have tried Stevia and Monk Fruit but did not care for them. I have pretty much given up on making any sweet baked goods because it was difficult for me to get the proper amount of sweetness with Splenda while not having the dish turn bitter. I know there are other sweeteners out there but I just haven’t tried them yet.
Do I have to give up diet sodas?
Again, that is your decision to make. I will tell you this: up until a week ago (so, for over 7 years) I drank coffee in the morning, whatever water I could force down, then at least 6 cans of diet Mountain Dew every day (yes, every single day). The only reason I gave them up (they will be treats from now on, like Mello Yellow Zero Raspberry Peach soda at Mc Donalds or Jack In The Box) is money. My husband and I sat down and did math and our jaws hit the floor when we saw how much it was costing us per month! We have now switched to unsweetened iced tea and Crystal Light flavored tea (I mix them in my glass). What surprised me was I lost (and kept off) 4 extra pounds, which I attribute to less sodium intake and who knows what the “brominated vegetable oil” was doing to my body.
How often should I eat and when should I eat? Do I have to eat breakfast?
Do what you need to do to stay on plan! I can’t tell you what your body’s energy needs are and neither can anyone else unless they sit down with you and thoroughly go over all of your activities and help you set up a plan that is specifically catered to you. No matter what anyone says, there is no “one plan for all.” In the beginning, I was pretty much eating all day long. I had snacking foods all over the place. I had beef jerky, pork rinds (especially the ones from the Mexican market down the street that looked like the entire side of a pig), Parmesan crisps, black olives, a bit of cheese and anything else that would help me regulate my blood sugar without spiking it. Gradually, I needed those snacks less and less until now, I eat roughly one and a half meals per day. If I am doing more physical labor, I need more food. If not, I do not need as much.
I have been doing this diet for “X” amount of days. Why am I not losing weight?
Unless you are quite heavy (300+ pounds) and were living off nothing but carbohydrates (ie: dinner was Cheez-Its, a large pizza, and ice cream), you will not see the quick, dramatic weight loss that has been shared all over the internet (and media). Period. How old are you? How long has it taken you to put this weight on? You wouldn’t even be able to go to a plastic surgeon and get a full body “lift and tuck” to lose weight as fast as some people think it should happen. Our bodies are complex and highly individualized. My body took a LONG time before it figured out I wasn’t starving it. It hoarded every ounce of body weight like a dragon with its gold. Your body has a lot of adjusting to do but more important is your mind. Are you changing your way of eating just to lose weight or are you doing this to become healthy?
Also, here is an article I shared some time ago: “Why The Scale Lies (Why the Scale Lies).” Read it. I cannot tell you how many times (for days or weeks) the scale would not budge. Thankfully, I measured myself also. How did I measure myself? Well, here’s a short article about what (and how) to do it: Taking Measurements (How to Get Your Body Measurements)? I chose a spot on my body and did my best to measure that same spot every week. Those weeks when I didn’t lose an ounce on the scale, I was losing 1/4-inch here or there. I would sometimes lose an inch (or more) all over my body during that week.
Why do you only post other people’s recipes?
Because they are awesome and I am a really boring cook. I am also a “throw it in the pan and if it tastes awful I toss it in the garbage” cook. I have tried creating my own recipes (I still have a few on here) but all you have to do is Google “low carb” and there are much more creative people out there who are willing to try multiple times to get a dish “just right.” I am not one of those people.
Why should I listen to you?
You don’t have to. As a matter of fact, all I can do is tell you what I have done (or people I know) and whether it worked for me or not. I have no formal education in nutrition or medicine. I just know what works for me and my body, what has worked for others that I know, and what Dr. Atkins wrote in his books.
If there is something you think I should address or you would like further clarification, do not hesitate to contact me. I will continue to update this page as more questions are asked.