A study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition demonstrates that the complete, ketone-producing carb restrictions popularized by Dr. Robert Atkins in his weight-loss program are not necessary for weight loss.

Other Diets Just as Effective

Severe carb restrictions cause the formation of ketones, which result when your body burns fat for fuel due to inadequate carb reserves. Researchers found that weight loss could be achieved just as effectively without this level of carbohydrate avoidance.

Metabolic and Emotional Effects

In addition, ketone-producing carb restrictions resulted in higher LDL cholesterol levels, and also adverse metabolic and emotional effects, when compared to low-carb dietsthat did notrestrict carbohydrate intake to the point ofketone production.

American Journal of Clinical Nutrition May 2006; 83(5): 1055-1061

Dr. Mercola's Comment:Dr. Robert Atkins passed away a little over two years ago now. He was a major pioneer in helping us appreciatesomepowerfulinsightsabout insulin physiology and how it could be used effectively to control weight and nearly all chronic, degenerative diseases.

I have been practicing nutritional medicine for well over two decades. It is my primary physical intervention. There is no question in my mindthat applying limited grains for those with elevated insulin levelswas one of the most profound improvements in patients' health I ever witnessed.

What does this mean?

Ideally, you would want to measure yourfasting insulin level, and if it was greater than 5-7 you should seriously restrict ALL grains. Yes, even whole unprocessed grains, and alternative grains like quinoa, amaranth, millet and teff.

If you don't want to measure your insulin levels, if you have any of the following conditions you can be virtually assured that your insulin or leptin levels, or both, are elevated.

  • High blood pressure
  • High blood chloesterol
  • Diabetes
  • Overweight
  • So if you have any of the above conditions it would be wise for you to completely eliminate or severely restrict ALL grains until you normalize those conditions.This is the profound knowledge that Dr. Atkins helped bring to social consciousness.

    However, there were some serious flaws in a fewparts of his program. First, he believed in the use of Splenda. As you will see when my new book, Sweet Deception, comes out this fall, this strategy was never justified.

    I'm bringing up Dr. Atkins because the Mayissue of oneof my favorite journals, the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, published a great study that demonstrates the complete carb restrictions he promoted in the initial phases of his dietary program to lose weight just aren't necessary.

    In this new study, researchers learned weight loss could be achieved just as effectively without severe carb restrictions, causing the formation of ketones thatresult when your body burns fat for fuel due to inadequate carb reserves. And, several patients following the stricter Atkins diet had marked increases in LDL cholesterol.

    Additionally, Dr. Atkins really didn't understand the principles of metabolic typing either. Thus, his program worked well for patients who are protein types, yet was an unmitigated failure for carb types.

    As I have saidabove,grain restriction is aprofoundly essential part of my Total Health Program. But as useful as this principle is, it pales in comparison to the power of metabolic typing. Without question, metabolic typing is the most important nutritional understanding I have ever encountered.

    You can get a jump start on learning what your metabolic type is, and how best to tailor your diet to it, by taking this free test. However, please understand that this free test is merely an example, and it is not as accurate as the paid test that we now offer.

    I was doing this test in my office for over five years before I could figure out a way to offer it online at a reasonable cost. This is the same test that EVERY person in our practice is required to take.

    Previously I would not offer the same test online because we could not offer a system to have the inevitable questions answered. So we invested over $100,000 to develop a software system and infrastruture that will allow you to have your questions answered.

    We have had many hundreds of people take advantage of this new system.

    I am saddened that I never had the chance to meet Dr. Atkins personally. I suspect if we had a chance to discussmetabolic typing,he might have adopted this for his program.

    Author's Bio: 

    This article is reprinted from Mercola.com, the world's #1 most visited and trusted natural/alternative health website. For a limited time only, you can take the FREE "Metabolic Type Test" to help you learn the right foods for your particular body type so you can achieve optimal fitness & health. Just go to http://www.mercola.com/forms/mt_test.htm right now to take this quick test!