It has been known for decades that a high protein low carbohydrate diet is bad for you yet this type of diet is still being pushed as an answer to our weight loss woes. The problem with high protein low carbohydrate diets is that they advocate taking entering a state of ketosis to help hasten weight loss. This forces the kidneys to accumulate waste in a way that is not healthy for you.
The first of this type of diet was the Atkins diet, which has been around since the 1970s. It is based on the principle of ketosis. Originally it was called The Stillman Diet. Dr. Stillman found out, through his research, that feeding the body more protein could induce weight loss then it was equipped to handle. This would trick the body into releasing fat through the urine. This does cause weight loss but it also painfully strains the kidneys which produce small amounts of brown urine when under this type of high-protein duress.
The Atkins diet was based on Dr. Stillman’s research from the late 1960s. Major corporations started marketing products with the Atkins brand on them – powders, supplements and books. The problem is that the people running this marketing organization did not believe in the product and they knew it did not work.
To top it off, ketosis is not the greatest state for your body to be in. Ketosis is an abnormal body process that occurs during starvation due to lack of carbohydrates. Ketosis causes fatigue, constipation, nausea, and vomiting, none of which are part of a healthy lifestyle. Long-term side effects of ketosis that have been well documented include heart disease, bone loss, and kidney damage.
A nutritional analysis of the Atkins diet by the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine concluded that this diet was much too high in saturated fat and cholesterol and much too pathetically low in fiber to be healthy for anyone. The lack of fruits and vegetables and carbs in the diet can leave the person dangerously deficient in seven key vitamins and minerals including calcium, iron, vitamin C, vitamin A, foliate, vitamin B12, and thiamine.
The problem is that eating too much protein in the form of meat means including more toxic, artery clogging fat in your body. The excess protein also stresses every organ in your body including the kidneys, intestines and liver. Eating fat is okay as long as it is healthy unsaturated fat.
The result is that you get thinner but only for a short while. This type of diet, as trendy as it is in one of its newest incarnations – the South Beach Diet – is just not that healthy for you.