Comparing the South Beach Diet and Food Pyramid Recommendations

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Comparing the South Beach Diet and Food Pyramid Recommendations Recently, new ideas for diet and weight loss, such as the South Beach low carbohydrate diet, have been replacing the previously chosen ideas, particularly, the Food Pyramid. Both eating patterns recommend consuming larger quantities of some food groups than others, although which groups varies between the diets. The former emphasis on diet and exercise is also beginning to shift with the new diet choices. In previous years to lose weight a person was told to eat “healthier”, lower caloric intake, and exercise more. Many of these advocates promoted the food pyramid. The food pyramid, completed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, recommends 6-11 servings from the “bread, cereal, rice, and pasta” group, 3-5 servings from the “vegetable” group, 2-4 servings from the “fruit” group, 2-3 servings from both the “milk, yogurt, and cheese” group and the “meat, poultry, fish, beans, eggs, and nuts group,” and “fats, oils, and sugars” are to be consumed “sparingly.” Serving sizes can be found on the label of most food products under the Nutrition Facts. Obviously, with the food pyramid, it is recommended that the group with the highest consumption per day should be from the bread, cereal, rice and pasta group, or the foods with the highest portion of carbohydrates. The South Beach diet does not recommend specific quantities of any one group. The diet consists of three phases. Phase one is the strictest phase with a very low intake of carbohydrates. Bread, cereal, rice, and pasta are completely excluded from the diet for two weeks. Instead, the initial two weeks consists mostly of eating meat, poultry, fish, eggs, cheese, and nuts. Phase two begins by reintroducing “good” carbs back into the diet. Good carbs include fruits and sparing consumption of whole wheat/grain bread and cereal. Phase two lasts until a person reaches their goal weight. Phase three is a maintenance phase in which a person takes everything they have learned and makes it a lifestyle change. Arthur Agatston, the cardiologist credited with the South Beach diet says that if you crave something in phase three you

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