In today’s ever-busy world and continuously demanding workloads, most individuals have become more sedentary than ever before. Duties and responsibilities have become more reliant on technology. Similarly, the physical activities of these individuals have dwindled to almost zero.
Due to the same reliance on technological comforts, society has also shifted toward the convenience of fast food and easy to prepare meals. These food items have also caused some serious health problems as these usually devoid of nutritional content. It comes as no surprise then that several diets have been created by various health and fitness experts to address the current health status of society.
Diets like the Ketogenic Diet and the Atkins diet have become very popular diet programs. Many people are willing to try the said diet programs to break free from their unhealthy lifestyles. Both diets feature low carbohydrate consumption for its dieters.
The question then is this- which diet or program is better? Keto vs. Atkins seems like a comparison of two (2) of the most well-known diet programs to date. In this article, we will look at the differences between these two (2) diet programs and try to find out which one is better.
The Atkins Diet: What Is It and What Does it Do?
The Atkins diet was developed by the cardiologist Robert Atkins in 1972. It has been popular since its introduction and its current version is known as Atkins 20.
Its original version was composed of four (4) distinct phases and its first or introductory phase starts the diet off with some restrictive rules for dieters. Carbohydrate intake will be limited to 20 to 25 grams of net carbs or carbs minus the fiber during this phase. These carbs will mostly come from food items such as eggs, nuts, veggies, and cheese. This will then force the body into ketosis. This ketosis will last until the dieter is within fifteen (15) lbs away from his/her target weight.
The second phase of the Atkins diet will then bump the carbohydrate intake up to 25 to 50 grams. This phase may now include food items such as blueberries, cottage cheese, and yogurt. Dieters will stay in Phase 2 of Atkins until they are 10 lbs away from their target weight.
The third phase involves finding the right balance of carbohydrate intake and stalled weight loss after achieving the target weight. This phase will also see a significant increase in carbohydrate intake which shall be between 50 to 80 grams. Phase 3 of the Atkins diet will involve some form of trial and error. This will have the dieter balancing between the number of carbohydrates they can actually consume before they gain any weight.
After figuring out and determining the right balance for your body during Phase 3, the dieter will now move on to Phase 4. This involves life long maintenance of the said right balance of carbohydrate intake. During this stage, Carbohydrate consumption can go as high up as 100 grams per day as long as there is no increase in the overall weight of the dieter.
The Ketogenic Diet: What Can Ketosis Do for the Body?
Compared to the many phases of the Atkins Diet, the ketogenic diet is a pretty straightforward diet program. It focuses on one way of eating during the entire diet and will cut down the carbs significantly.
The Keto diet is basically a low carb diet which will entail cutting down carbohydrate consumption to five (5) percent (%) of an individuals total daily intake. The other 75 % will usually come from fast and the remaining 20 % will ideally be from proteins. Similar to Atkins, this way of eating will force the body into ketosis.
The Ketogenic diet was originally developed for children with epilepsy in the 1920s. According to some studies, the ketogenic diet helped children with epilepsy to better manage and even lessen the incidence of seizures. However, experts noted that the ketogenic diet was also beneficial for those who wanted to lose weight and maintain a healthy body mass index.
The ketogenic diet has also been noted to help adults with epilepsy. However, experts warned against the possibility of experiencing nausea, headaches, and mental fatigue. These side effects will mostly be due to the ketones present in the body and the “keto” flu effect it may have on the body.
Aside from the symptoms of keto flu, going through the ketogenic diet may also result in patients experiencing vitamin and mineral deficiencies due to the low carbohydrate intake.
Similarities Between the Ketogenic Diet and the Atkins Diet
Both the Ketogenic diet and the Atkins diet are low carbohydrate diets and individuals undergoing the said diets will naturally lose weight if they strictly followed. However, experts believe that the first few pounds of weight loss will mainly be due to loss of water weight due to the low carbohydrate nature of both the Ketogenic diet and the Atkins Diet. This is because carbohydrates naturally retain and store water.
Both the ketogenic and the Atkins diets’ doability also depends on the dieting style of the individual. Those who are more comfortable with and prefer the four (4) phases of Atkins may have difficulty with the straightforward non-progressive approach of the ketogenic diet while those who prefer a more straightforward diet such as the ketogenic diet may have a harder time with the Atkins diet which is a highly organized and nuanced type of diet program especially during its early phases.
Differences of the Ketogenic Diet and Atkins Diet
The number of proteins taken is one of the key differences between the two diets. There is no protein cap for Atkins. While protein should only be limited to 20% of the total daily intake of calories for the Ketogenic Diet.
Another key difference would be that for the ketogenic diet, the body will be in ketosis all throughout the program while for the Atkins diet, ketosis will only be for Phase 1 and Phase 2 of the program.
Which is the Better Diet?
Ultimately, it seems like both diets are beneficial and safe for dieters if done short term. Both are low carbohydrate diets and may have better results than low-fat diets in the long run. The preference for either the Ketogenic vs. Atkins may simply lie in the individual’s personal preference and how comfortable he/she is with the requirements of each type of diet program.