I had toast for breakfast this morning (July 21). That wasn’t all – I also had 2 eggs, yogurt and an apple – but for me the toast was the most significant item on the menu. I haven’t had a slice of bread for a month and I used to average 2 per meal.
After 4 weeks on the Ideal Protein diet Phase 1 and 2, I have reached my goal, losing 22 lbs and 20 inches. Phase 3 is the critical part where carbs are carefully reintroduced. I am now allowed 2 slices of whole wheat bread or a half bowl of unsweetened whole grain cereal, along with a fruit, a dairy and, of course, a protein food.
During the 2 week transition Phase 3 carbs are eaten once a day only, at breakfast. This phase is unique to the Ideal Protein program and is responsible for the lasting effect of the diet. Phase 3 accomplishes 3 objectives:
• provides a transition from weight loss to weight maintenance protocol, which allows the metabolism to catch up and promotes calorie burning rather than fat storage;
• restarts the pancreas and “trains” it to produce the appropriate amount of insulin in response to consumed carbohydrates, keeping blood sugar levels even;
• prevents the cells from reverting to insulin resistance, the problem behind Metabolic Syndrome with its corresponding symptoms of high blood pressure, high blood sugar, low HDL (“good cholesterol”), and high triglycerides.
My weight is now at 196, 4 lbs below my revised goal of 200. During this week and next I expect to gain the 4 lbs back as my glycogen reserves are replenished. Then I start on Phase 4, the maintenance diet, which will keep me at my new “slender” 200 lb size.
Here’s a peek at what Phase 4 looks like:
• Breakfast: protein, carb, fat, fruit
• Lunch: protein, vegetables, fat, no carbs
• Supper: protein, vegetables, complex carbs, fruit, no fats
• Bedtime snack: protein
Fats consumed should be good quality: e.g. butter, coconut oil, olive or grapeseed oil, almond butter. Separating fats (lunch) and carbs (supper) prevents fat storage, but it will take some getting used to – no sandwiches for lunch or butter on my dinner rolls!
“Planned cheats” is an interesting concept. Special events and holidays can be accommodated at any phase of the program with a week preparation and a week follow-up. I’m going to try that out at our family reunion this Saturday. In Phase 4 a planned cheat day once a week is mandatory, to be followed by a no-carb Phase 1 day to prevent fat storage.
And gaining 10 pounds over the course of a year is no big deal. Just go back on Phase 1 for two weeks following the Thanksgiving or Christmas holidays and burn it off, resetting your pancreas in the process. This really is “your last diet”!
This article is intended for educational purposes only; for medical advice consult your licensed health practitioner.