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Although the low-carb/high-protein craze has faded and pushed the Atkins Diet plan away from center stage, it still provides some short-term diet options for people who want to lose weight or maintain weight loss. The company now calls itself Atkins Nutritional Advantage, or ANA, rather than Atkins Diet. It is also attempting to position Atkins as a lifestyle eating plan for healthy, active people by marketing its own brand of food products (such as snack bars) to compete with other energy bars such as Clif Bars or Power Bars. The ANA endorses five principles: high protein, high fiber, low sugar, no trans fats and “abundant” vitamins and minerals.
But the principles of ANA remain the same as those of the Atkins Diet and consist of four phases: the induction phase, ongoing weight loss phase, pre-maintenance phase and lifetime maintenance phase. The ANA still emphasizes controlling carbohydrates during the first two phases, but allows for gradually adding carbs back into your diet (but in moderation compared with proteins and healthy fats) assuming that you will attempt to follow the ANA guidelines to help you maintain a healthy weight. The ANA has its own food pyramid, with carbs at the tip and protein as the base, so the emphasis is still that of a relatively low-carb/high-protein eating plan. If you are tempted to follow the high-protein/low-carb plan outlined in the first two phases as a way to lose weight fast, just remember that these early phases aren't meant to be followed for the long term. Some studies of low-carb/high-protein dieters have shown that many people who lose weight quickly on these diets find the regimen (and the weight loss) difficult to maintain.
The bottom line: If a structured plan for the short-term and long-term intrigues you, Atkins may be a viable choice, but it involves more planning and effort in food preparation and selection compared with other diet plans.
DietTV.com has your best and full review for each diet plan with pictures of what you can/can't eat.