This article Atkins vs Keto was inspired by one of my readers and greatly appreciated. We know a lot about keto from reading through my website, but what do we know about the Atkins Diet? This article is in no way to discredit the Atkins diet, as one of my favorite sayings is “to each their own”. I just know what has been working for me and many other people as well, if you just surf around a bit through your Facebook searching for success stories from Keto you will see what I’m talking about.
What’s the difference between Atkins and Keto?
We know that keto is a low carbohydrate, moderate protein & high fat way of life. We know that keto aids in weight loss along with many other benefits as discussed in my article of “Benefits of the Keto diet“. Lets take a look at what the Atkins diet is and how the Atkins Diet works.
Yes, Atkins is low carbohydrate but not as low as keto. Atkins allows 10% versus the 5% keto allows. Atkins also allows for more carbohydrates as time passes, until the full amount is allowed. On the Atkins diet this is referred to as the “induction phase“.
As far as macro nutrients go, Atkins is an average of 60% fat, 30% protein and 10% carbohydrates that they increase with time.
While following a ketogenic lifestyle if you go over in your protein macronutrient it is just stored as fat, as your body can only break down so much protein at a time.
The Ketogenic lifestyle is an average of 75-90% good fats, 6-20% protein and 2-5% carbohydrates and we stay within these levels depending upon what your goals are.
The Atkins diet was created solely for purpose of weight loss. The ketogenic way of life was created for treating epilepsy and was found to treat many other issues such as brain fog, depression, fluid retention and type 2 diabetes to name a few.
Atkins if not sustainable for continued weight loss because in time it adds back the carbohydrates and as you do this, it will add the weight back. Keto is permanently sustainable as a life style change as long as you stay within your allotted macro’s, get in your electrolytes and measure your ketones.
Comparing Atkins and Keto
Both plans use low carbohydrates to stimulate Ketosis but only the Keto say of life will keep you in nutritional ketosis. As you add more carbohydrates your body will no longer be using ketones, it will resort back to glucose because excess carbohydrates convert to glucose in the body. The body is hard-wired to use glucose primarily, it has to be trained to use ketones by taking away its sources of sugar.
Both plans aid in weight loss but neither is a cure being over weight if you treat it as just another “diet plan”. A lot of people think that once they have lost the desired weight they can stop and go right back to eating like they did before. In order to maintain the weight you have lost you have to make a life style change and be aware that what you put in becomes who you are.
Unless you are lucky enough to have a high metabolism or still in your teens I hate to tell you, but you do need to make a life style change not just go on a “diet”. Unless your happy being unhealthy or overweight, but not many I know are. A lot of the times people who go off “diets” and go back to the way they lived before gain the weight back and add on more. So the next time they try to get healthy or get that excess weight off, its harder. This was a harsh reality for me but as time went on and it proved to be true I made the change, I am the change.
In my opinion and from personal experience in order to either maintain weight or stay healthy you have to change your mind set. This is coming from someone who loves to eat and I come from a family that eating is social and we eat to soothe and comfort. So this was a challenge for me, but because the Keto lifestyle is not that restrictive I am able to sustain this. Regardless of your “why” whether it be to lose weight or to just be a healthier you, make it a life style change not just an in the moment choice.
Unfortunately as we age our bodies respond slower and we lost that bounce back we used to have. So its really important to be aware of what you are putting in your body as we don’t metabolize like we used to.
Like I have repeatedly stated before, whether you choose the Atkins Diet or the Keto lifestyle you should view it as more of a permanent change rather than a temporary treatment.
Because Atkins allows for full carbohydrate intake at the end stages, it doesn’t leave much room for longevity or sustainability. If we resort to the eating habits we did before, then we will be what we were before.
When using keto as a lifestyle plan you can count on longevity because it is a healthier choice. Just as an added bonus, some research shows that the keto lifestyle will add years to your life you may not have had otherwise.
I’m sure the Atkins Diet would work to lose that preliminary weight but it does not offer longevity nor does it help with mental clarity, fluid retention and many of the other benefits that the Ketogenic Lifestyle does.
In closing, although many people think that Atkins and keto are the same there are several differences. Using the Atkins diet plan for temporary purposes serves its objective in being just that “a diet”.
Using the Keto lifestyle for weight loss and taking the many benefits it offers as a bonus can be used for life.
So you tell me, which one you would choose and why?