The Dukan Diet has been gaining quite a bit of steam lately in the weight loss community. The diet sparked my interest mainly because it originated from France, the land of rich calorie loaded dishes. Without further ado, let’s dive into what the heck it is.
The Dukan Diet is a diet invented by a French doctor named Dr. Pierre Dukan. Dr. Dukan started off his career in neurology but his career took a turn when he accidentally discovered a diet plan that successfully helped his friend lose weight. For 35 years now, he’s been specializing in nutrition and has written several top selling books in the area of nutrition and weight loss.
Dr. Dukan believes that counting calories does not work in the long run so he wanted to create a weight management program that allows you to eat real food. The theory behind the Dukan Diet plan is eating in phases, starting with a strict weight loss phase where you can eat foods from set list and then gradually easing your body back into real world foods.
This phase is the first phase and is supposed to kickstart your weight loss. In this phase you are to eat only low-fat proteins (no carbs, no veggies), but you can eat as much of it as you want. The duration of this phase is typically 3-5 days (depends on what you weight target is).
This phase is where you lose the majority of the weight as you head towards your weight loss goal. In this phase, you just alternate days where you eat only low-fat proteins, and days where you eat low-fat proteins and vegetables. Still no carbs! You continue doing this until you reach your weight loss goal.
This phase is where you start to reintroduce carbohydrates into your diet while keeping your weight stable. In addition to being able to add a small amount of carbs into your diet each day, you are also allowed to eat one special meal per week that contains a starter, main course, and a dessert of your liking.
This phase is where you maintain that weight. In this phase, you are to continue to reintroduce carbohydrates into your diet by gradually increasing the portion sizes. You are also required to set aside one day per week to eat only low-fat proteins. You still get one special meal per week like in the consolidation phase too!
My Impressions of the Dukan Diet
This diet sounds to me like it might just work since it does cut a lot of carbs from your diet in the weight loss phase. I think this would be a worthy diet to try if you weren’t already eating healthy and you absolutely love food way too much. Though it is a bit similar to the Atkin’s Diet, the Dukan Diet book clearly tells people to steer clear of fatty foods (which is great advice). From that, I don’t foresee any heart complications.
I only have a few issues with the Dukan Diet menu:
- The first issue I have with it is the protein-only days. I’d imagine that I would need lots of Metamucil or other fiber supplements to help me get through those days (if you know what I mean).
- The second issue is have with it is, I’m a bit concerned for people who exercise heavily while they are on this diet. Without carbs, your body will have no source of fast energy. I’d imagine that if you are on this diet, you won’t be able to exercise as hard or perform as well when you are in the initial phase.
- The last issue I have with is is, I’m really questioning the ability for people to maintain their weight in the 4th phase. I have no proof this, but it’s just a gut feeling that it won’t work.
If you do not already eat a healthy diet, do exercise lightly to moderately, and do not have any digestive issues, then it might be worth it to try the Dukan Diet. Personally, I’m already eating semi-healthy and exercise intensely everyday, so I’ll have to pass on this diet fad. Please feel free share your experiences with the Dukan Diet in the comments section!