This week brought the 1st official day of Fall. The leaves on the trees are changing. Football for my kids and my fantasy football league are rolling. And I officially started Phase 1 of the South Beach Diet today too.
My friends know this is my favorite time of year. My 9 and 11-year old both play tackle football – it's quite a rush to see them galloping around the field, hyping themselves up, and running around crashing into hapless opponents and teammates!
Unfortunately, my diet had rapidly deteriorated as well. It seems my stomach was fully wanting to jump right into tailgate mode along with the rest of me. In truth, I had let things slide I'm sad to say for the past several months. So much to do in the summer, from fishing, work, writing, and tending to our farm.
Time to Jump into South Beach
I've been a fan of the South Beach diet for years. It does have a lot of similarities to the glycemic index diet but it is structured differently in several ways. For one, it's more of a "diet" in many ways than the GI plan, which is more focused on an overall wellness and health approach. If you're interested in more rapid weight loss, I know from 1st hand experience that South Beach works great for me.
The reason? Well, I'm an admitted carb-o-holic. It's a curse, and one I've come to grips with and usually have under control. But… I've let myself slip pretty regularly of late I'm sad to say.
Foods for south beach differ from those on the GI Diet (see the Glycemic Index food list for a larger listing). Phase 1 of the South Beach program is a bear. But I shed a ton of weight (I've lost 17# in 2-weeks, but this is more than is average). This isn't water weight loss, it's real and adapts your metabolism to rid (ok, reduce is more like it) cravings for carbohydrates. During the first 2 weeks, you eat literally no carbs — there is no "good" vs. "bad" carb discussion here, not during the 2-week phase. That comes later.
I've joked how I was in Atlanta on a business trip and literally had dreams of Frosted Mini Wheats during the 2nd week of my Phase 1 period during one of my trials. True story I'm sad to say.
The good news though is that South Beach really does level off, and during Phase 2 and Phase 3 you really adapt your nutrition and metabolism to good carbs. For the most part, the good carbs in Phase 2 are similar to Low and Medium Glycemic Index rated foods but there are differences. Be sure to check out our food lists for more details and comparisons. You'll get to reintroduce limited amounts of whole wheat pasta, some breads (even sourdough), and others.
If you're interested in it, read our review of the South Beach Diet Plan and see if its right for you.