The Dukan Diet is a protein-based “Diet” created by French nutritionist and dietitian Pierre Dukan and is the number one weight loss plan in the UK followed by plenty of women. The method is to eat like the primitive man back when we were hunter-gatherers – sort of like paleo, with a twist. Overall, It includes 100 foods with 72 of those foods being protein-based and 28 from plants.
The goal is to lose roughly ten pounds within the first week, and two to four pounds in the following weeks, though this diet is often criticized for being restrictive and dangerous due to its strict guidelines. A quality multivitamin and mineral supplement is also taken to ensure proper nutrients are delivered to the body. Spices and artificial sweeteners are also allowed in moderation. No added sugars, fats, or oils are allowed.
There are four phases to the Dukan diet: The attack phase, the cruise phase, the consolidation phase, and the stabilization phase.
The Attack Phase
The goal during the attack phase is to lose weight rapidly, roughly ten pounds in the first week. There is no calorie counting, and dieters can eat as much protein as they want as long as it’s relatively lean and doesn’t contain any added sugars. The protein that can be eaten may vary from chicken, lean beef, eggs, soy, cottage cheese, and low fat dairy. The only carbohydrate source allowed during this phase is oat bran because of its fiber content and hunger suppressing properties. Also, at least 1.5 liters of water must be consumed each day.
The Cruise Phase
During the cruise phase, you cycle back and forth from eating protein and non-starchy vegetables and only eating protein. You cannot use butter or oils, and plenty of water is encouraged. Specifically, 28 certain vegetables are allowed during this phase, yet no fruit is allowed. The aim of the cruise phase is for the dieter to reach their target body weight more gradually. Dieters can hope to lose roughly 2.2 pounds a week during this phase(results may vary). This phase lasts as long as in weeks as kilograms needed to be lost for the individual’s weight. So if an individual needs to lose 10 kg, this phase will last roughly 10 weeks. Vegetables can be consumed in unlimited quantities as long as they are not starchy. The dieter may also eat as much low fat protein sources as indicated in the first phase. Water and oat bran quantities stay the same.
The Consolidation Phase
The main goal of the consolidation phase is to prevent the person from gaining any weight back. Dieters are very prone to gaining weight back after losing all the weight, so the goal is to stay in the consolidation phase for roughly 100 to 200 days. During this phase, the individual can consume unlimited amounts of non-starchy vegetables and lean proteins daily, as well as one portion of low-sugar fruit, one portion of cheese, and 2 slices of whole-grain bread. Also, the dieter is allowed to have one or two servings of starchy carbohydrates and one or two celebration meals each week. During the celebration meal, the dieter can eat whatever they want. Also, during this phase, the dieter eats purely protein one day of the week.
The Stabilization Phase
The stabilization phase is basically the long-term maintenance part of the plan where people can eat pretty much whatever they want yet still following the same simple rules: One day a week with all protein, three tablespoons of oat bran a day, a 20 minute walk a day, and get plenty of exercise. Basically, normal eating is resumed after the diet, but the diet teaches people how to keep the weight off long term.
Is the Dukan Diet for me?
Maybe. The best diet is the one you can stick to for the long run, and a sustainable lifestyle is the best lifestyle. That being said, giving the Dukan diet a shot could help those who just need some sort of guidance.
Nordqvist, Christian. “What Is the Dukan Diet?” Medical News Today. MediLexicon International, 16 Sept. 2014. Web. 06 Apr. 2016.
“The Dukan Diet Pros and Cons.” Diets in Review. Diets In Review, n.d. Web. 06 Apr. 2016.
Cannady, Ayren Jackson. “Dukan Diet Review: Phases, Menu, & More.”WebMD. WebMD, 12 Mar. 2016. Web. 06 Apr. 2016