Knowing Your “Fad” Diets: South Beach Diet

It is known by now that fab diets are all over the place. It seems like every now and again, at least one or two pops up claiming that it can help with weight loss. However, only a few of them really works.

One of the many fad diets that is known to the public is the South Beach Diet, and it has been popular for over a decade now.

The promise of a South Beach Diet revolved around a rapid weight loss program without running the risk of getting hungry, and all the while, promoting and improving one’s overall health, especially when it comes to the heart. However, it has its limitations that has led many to label it as a “fad”.

So, let us go back and look into what constitutes the South Beach Diet.

Knowing Your “Fad” Diets: South Beach Diet


The South Beach Diet was first introduced by Dr. Arthur Agatston in the 90s. He is a Florida-based cardiologist and was already renowned in the medical field having developed the Agatston score which was a measurement of how much calcium was in a person’s coronary arteries.

He forced to develop the South Beach Diet because of his concerns with the Atkins Diet. His concerned were that in spite the individuals who were losing weight through this dietary recommendation, and they have been losing belly fat, the high amounts of saturated fat that was part of the dietary prescription would be bad for the heart, which was later found out that it was not.

In addition, he did not believe that it was necessary to cut out fruits and whole grains which had good carbs in them.

This was when he developed the South Beach Diet which constitutes of dietary intake that had low-glycemic-index carbohydrates, lean proteins, and unsaturated fat. He initially tried it himself at first and prescribed it to other when he got the results he expected. Those who he prescribed it to achieved the same results as his.


The South Beach Diet involves three phases.

• Phase One

This phase lasts 14 days from when you began. It is the strictest phase that involves limiting the intake of fruits, grains, and higher-carb food. The goal is to stabilize blood sugar and insulin levels and satiate hunger. Estimated weight lost would be around eight to thirteen pounds.

You will consume three meals a day, and two mandatory snacks each with a restriction.

• Phase Two

This one starts on the 15th day until you reach your target weight. Estimated weight lost is around one to two pounds a week.

The food allowed are the same ones as the first phase, with the added luxury of limited portions of fruit, “good” carbohydrates which includes whole grains, and specific alcoholic beverages.

Knowing Your “Fad” Diets: South Beach Diet

• Phase Three

Phase three starts when you achieve your target weight. This is the maintenance phase in which your dietary intake will be the same as the second. However, you are allowed the occasional indulgence. However, if you start putting on weight, you have to go back to phase one for at least one to two weeks before returning straight back to the third phase.

If you ever knew what the Atkins Diet was, then you would know that it is basically the same, however, a little bit more lenient. You do not starve yourself with this one, and, you are still allowed some indulgence every once in a while.