Re: safety review of Atkin's diet
Sat, 16 Oct 1999 11:40:10 -0700

Doug Skrecky, <>, quotes a German journal regarding the Atkins diet:

The "Atkins dietary revolution" is a ketogenic diet consisting almost exclusively of food from animal origin.

Most of the information I have found online is very skeptical about high protein diets like Atkins', and also Sears' "The Zone" diet. The ketosis state can be dangerous if not medically supervised, and although it does cause a loss of appetite it has bad side effects as well.

A similar diet was introduced
as the "Banting diet" more than a century ago by the English physician Harvey. This carbohydrate-free diet is high in fat, cholesterol and purines. The measurable ketosis is a precondition for the effect of this kind of diet. However, the predictable hyperlipacidemia and ketosis are recognized health risks. Additionally, hypercholesterolemia is to be expected in a greater part of the adherents to such a diet.

Hypercholesterolemia is high blood cholesterol, an understandable side effect of a diet high in meat proteins.

children under ketogenic diet develop hypercholesterolemia within a short time. A similar high-fat diet, known as the Sippy diet for ulcer therapy, was found earlier to cause an increased incidence in coronary heart disease. On the basis of the known facts the Atkins diet seems to be potentially hazardous to health, unless a controlled study is performed. However, considering the risks it seems very problematic to perform such a study.

Some links expressing concerns about high protein diets: