And yet again a trend diet comes from the USA – the South Beach Diet. But what does this sunny slimming cure promise? And what are its advantages and disadvantages? We want to tell you all this in the following!
The South Beach Diet, also known as the Southern Beaches Diet, is actually a diet for life and a way of changing our eating habits. This diet is advertised as a diet of stars and starlets in Hollywood, which allows them to keep the ideal silhouette for many years.
The cornerstone of this diet is the avoidance of highly processed carbohydrates, which are digested very quickly by the organism (that’s why hunger is only currently being fed), as well as saturated fatty acids, which are found in butter, among other things. It is recommended to consume mainly protein, simple carbohydrates, and unsaturated fatty acids.
What is the South Beach Diet?
This slimming cure was designed by the American cardiologist Dr. Arthur Agatston. It is based on the low carb movement and relies on the glycemic index (GI) to lose pounds.
In concrete terms, this means: as little carbohydrates as possible and more protein! The aim is to keep blood sugar levels constant and stable. And even ravenous appetite attacks should not occur in the first place!
How does the South Beach Diet work?
As already mentioned, this diet relies above all on low-carb and low-fat foods, so that the pounds finally fall. Agatston developed the concept at the Mount Sinai Cardiac Prevention Center in Miami Beach, Florida – hence the name. It is similar in principle to the Atkins diet, but it is not that strict – at least in terms of carbohydrate intake.
Rather, it depends on the quality and type of carbohydrates and fats.
This is at least as important as the amount allowed per day.
How’s the South Beach diet?
Three meals are allowed per day. They should always contain a source of protein – such as eggs, soya products, fish and meat. However, you should avoid snacks.
Overall, the South Beach Diet is divided into three phases. Each of these phases lasts two weeks. We would like to introduce you in more detail in the following section:
What does the South Beach Diet Phase 1 look like?
Phase 1 is – similar to Phase 2 – very strict. Three meals a day are on the agenda here as well.
However, many foods are not allowed – such as products with simple carbohydrates like fruit, bread, pasta, potatoes. Alcohol should also not be consumed during this time.
In this way you can, according to the promise, lose between four and seven kilos. Weighing and counting calories is no longer necessary and the portions may be sized in such a way that hunger is satisfied in any case.
But you have to do without some things. The ulterior motive: The aim is to reduce the body’s craving for carbohydrate-rich and sweet foods.
And what about South Beach Phase 2?
Once the first fortnight has passed, you can start Phase 2. This regulation provides that some carbohydrates with a low GI value may be added to the diet again. This applies to wholemeal products, vegetables and most types of fruit. Pulses and nuts are now also allowed again.
But there are still bans. In concrete terms, this applies to:
- white flour products
This phase aims to reach the target weight. And should be terminated if this is actually the case.
When does the South Beach Diet Phase 3 start?
Then, when the desired weight is reached! And compared to the other two rather strict phases, this period of time is almost a recovery. Now many vegetables and fruit, fish, lean meat and all carbohydrates can be integrated into the diet. But beware: these should only be included step by step. Otherwise, there may be a rapid increase in weight. And the frustration is even greater…
- So you are basically allowed to eat everything (again).
- However, caution is still called for for all those foods with a low GI.
- This applies, for example, to fruits such as bananas, pineapples and watermelons.
- Oranges, apples and cantaloup melons are allowed.
How to lose weight quickly with the South Beach Diet?
Fine and good – but what about the weight gains? Experience has shown that you lose weight quickly, especially in the first two weeks – up to 6 kg is possible. However, after phase 1, the weight loss usually slows down considerably.
Particularly since it is primarily a matter of losing water – it is only later that the body becomes aware of its fat reserves. Phase 3 is then mainly used to maintain the weight achieved.
Sport can accelerate this process even more – even if it is not explicitly foreseen according to the South Beach concept. Nevertheless, we advise you to do so. After all, apart from a healthy and balanced diet, plenty of exercise such as cycling, running, swimming or other sports are the second prerequisite for really losing weight and maintaining a slender, firm body. These sports sessions should be held at least twice a week.
What are the advantages of the South Beach Diet?
Here we have summarized the advantages of this diet for you:
- no tedious counting of calories
- no weighing of foodstuffs
- less unhealthy foodstuffs
- numerous foods that are healthy and rich in valuable ingredients
- quick customer sequence
What are the disadvantages of the South Beach Diet?
But the disadvantages should not be concealed at this point:
- only limited food selection during the first two weeks
- going out to eat out therefore very difficult
- not recommended for patients with kidney disease and gout
- long-term threat of vitamin deficiencies – especially in phase 1
- very little dietary fibre during the first phase
- not scientifically proven
- quite high risk of demolition
- no sport and no exercise integrated in the diet plan
What’s our South Beach Diet conclusion?
Though this diet is not as strict as those of Atkins. And it also integrates numerous healthy foods into the menu. However, it proves to be rather difficult to implement in everyday life, as the numerous prohibitions make it very inflexible. In addition, all meals must always be freshly prepared – but not everyone has the time to do so.
In addition, the theory of the glycemic index is increasingly controversial in science and has not been sufficiently proven – on the contrary. Last but not least, the first two phases in particular are difficult to endure because of the many bans. Whether the promised weight gains of up to 6 kg in the first two weeks will actually materialize is also unclear.
All in all, a diet that has some good beginnings and brings healthy eating habits with it. But there are no concrete tips and no indication of how important sport is.