What Foods Can You Eat on the Atkins Diet?

by Kate McQuade

Although the Atkins diet has been around for many years, many people think it is a strict no-carbohydrate, high-protein diet, which is not the case. The Atkins diet limits the amount of carbohydrates you take in, but encourages better choices in every food you choose to eat, especially when choosing which carbohydrates to pick. Below is a brief snapshot of what food are on the menu while on the Atkins diet.

Meat

Meat is an essential component of the Atkins Diet. This category is where you are going to be getting the bulk of your protein. You will want to choose lean meats such as venison, chicken and leaner cuts of beef. Seafood is another option, although be mindful not to dip every piece of lobster you consume in butter or other fatty oils. As a rule of thumb, if it had parents in the past, it has no carbohydrates then it is perfect for the Atkins diet.

Vegetables

Choose vegetables that are low in carbohydrates to make the diet effective. Most green vegetables are a safe bet, everything from cucumbers to green peppers to Lima beans. Lettuce and spinach are a good choice as well because they contain water in their leaves more so than other veggies, thereby hydrating you while you eat. You will want to limit your intake of veggies with high carbohydrate counts such as sugar snap peas.

Fruit

Many fruits, such as grapes and pineapples, have a large amount of carbohydrates in them, so you will want to limit your exposure to them. Strawberries and melons like cantaloupes and honey dews are better choices when gravitating toward this food group, because not only will they satisfy your sweet tooth in a healthful manner, but they contain water and will hydrate you just the lettuce mentioned above.

Whole Grains

You will still want to take in a limited amount of carbohydrates in your diet. Choose whole grains when selecting your pasta and breads to get the most power in your carbohydrate intake. Whole grains will have more fiber in them and will give you a more satisfied, full feeling, which makes them a far better choice over refined grains like the ones found in white bread.

Considerations

The Atkins diet is not appropriate for everyone. Before starting any new diet, you should consult your doctor to make sure you choose the plan that is best for your overall health. Additionally, diet goes hand in hand with exercise to promote overall wellness and fitness. Consult with your doctor on starting an exercise regime that fits your needs and skill level to round out the health benefits of this experience to your full expectations.

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About the Author

As a history major at the University of Maryland, Kate McQuade spent both her undergraduate and graduate years focused on research, technical writing and independent thinking. McQuade spent many years in the IT and medical fields which lend to a well versed background in a plethora of arenas. She has been writing for almost fifteen years and is ever ready for new challenges.