Dukan Diet is the Latest Low-carb Weight-loss Plan

Dukan Diet is the Latest Low-carb Weight-loss Plan

The latest diet craze set to sweep across North America has roots that go back 25 years. That’s when a French doctor named Pierre Dukan wrote in a scientific journal of the “paralyzing failure” of the low calorie diet.

“It sets quotas, doses, and portions but forgets that the people having to follow it are made of flesh and blood, emotions and instincts,” he wrote.

In the next two decades, he experimented with different weight loss regimes in his practice, and finally produced The Dukan Diet: The French Medical Solution for Permanent Weight Loss published by Hodder and Stoughton. Since then millions of followers have embraced his plan, including the mother of Prince William’s fiance, Kate Middleton.

The low carbohydrate diet, which runs through the four stages of attack, weight loss, stabilization and cruise, starts with a high-protein, no-carb approach, offering the dieter a set list of 72 protein-rich foods to select for eating in the first week of the program. A vegetarian component on alternate days highlights phase two, as 28 low-carb vegetables are added to the mix.

In the stabilization or consolidation phase, small amounts of carbohydrates are re-introduced to the diet. the goal at this stage is for the dieter to loose one pound every five days.

Unlike other low-carb diets such as Atkins and the Mediterranean Diet, Dukan also allows followers to have two celebration meals a week.

Once the dieter has reached goal weight, he or she moves to the “cruise” stage. You can then eat what you want every day of the week except Thursdays, when you must revert to the “attack” stage. The promise is that you can maintain your goal weight for life.

Dr. Dukan maintains that his diet works much more effectively than low-calorie diets, which he writes are logical only in theory.

“In practice, it’s the most disconcerting and the least effective.”

Dukan, whose speciality is nutrition and who is chair of RIPOSTE, an international association of nutritionists, says in his book that overweight people wanting to lose weight need a fast-acting diet that brings quick results so they can maintain their motivation.

“…they also need precise goals to achieve, set by an outside instructor, with a series of various levels and crossing points to aim for so that they can see their efforts and compare them with the results expected,” he writes.

The book, which became a bestseller in the United Kingdom after it was translated to English, is set to be available through on-line booksellers in the United States and Canada within a few weeks.

Reviewers of the diet, while not discounting the effectiveness of Dukan’s scientific approach to weight loss, suggest that the problem with his plan is its strict limitations on what can be eaten, especially in the early stage. The pure protein diet can also cause excessive flatulence and tiredness, its critics suggest.