Harold Hamm Oklahoma Diabetes Center

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Low Carbohydrate Diets

Michelle Dennison-FarrisMichelle Dennison-Farris, RD/LD, BC-ADM, CDE

Oklahoma Diabetes Center Dietitian Diabetes Educator

High Protein Diets are now as popular as they have ever been. From restaurants to grocery stores, everyone is cashing in on the hype. So what are they all about? And, more importantly what is the best way to lose weight?

First the basics: There are only 4 major nutrients in food: Water, Fat, Protein and Carbohydrate. The High Protein Diet is obviously high in protein and fat and very low in Carbohydrate. Carbohydrate is the body’s preferred source of energy.

When the body is deprived of Carbohydrate it must switch to an alternative energy source, which is usually fat. This is called ketosis. Ketosis is not an ideal body state and is not as an efficient process of energy consumption as is normal carbohydrate metabolism. This can result in irritability and sluggishness. Because of this, it might be helpful, when on a low-carb diet, if you choose to live alone without contact with anyone, (your family will thank you).

The good news is at the start of one of these diets, it is not uncommon to hear of a 8-10 pound weight loss. The bad news is, this is mostly water weight. Not fat. Once a person returns to a more balanced diet, the fluid will return, causing a weight gain.

A low-carb diet is not easy to stay on. It’s confusing and it deprives us of some of the most natural and nutritious foods available. It also does not provide all of the vitamins and minerals necessary for normal body function. Supplemental pills are often necessary to maintain normal body function. Just what we all need, another pill.

Those with special health concerns, like diabetes, should avoid high protein diets. They can have very serious side effects.

Weight loss from a low-carbohydrate diet is not a safe or easy weight loss. The best way to lose weight is to do the opposite of what you did when you gained it… move more, eat less. Makes a little more sense, doesn’t it ? It’s simple. The weight will come off in a safer manner and stay off longer.

For more information on the safe and easy way to lose weight please contact the Oklahoma Diabetes Center at 405-271-3455.