Dr. Arthur Agatston is a preventive cardiologist and an associate professor of medicine at the University Of Miami Miller School Of Medicine. In 1995, Dr. Agatston developed a diet to help his cardiac and diabetes patients improve their blood chemistries and lose weight. His eating plan worked so well that a Miami TV station asked if it could offer the diet to its viewers. Hundreds of South Floridians went on the diet and lost weight three years running, and its popularity eventually led to the publication of Dr. Agatston’s first book, The South Beach Diet, in 2003. Today, the South Beach Diet is a lifestyle approach to healthy eating for millions of people around the world.
is divided into three Phases.
- Phase 1. It lasts two weeks and is designed to eliminate cravings and kick-start weight loss. The shortest Phase lasts for just two weeks and is designed to eliminate cravings for sugar and refined starches – and to jump-start your weight loss. The purpose of Phase 1 is to stabilize blood sugar (which minimizes cravings), making it ideal for people who are prediabetic or diabetic, as well as for those who need to lose a lot of weight. The focus of this two-week period is on eating plenty of nutrient-dense, fiber-rich (and guaranteed delicious!) foods that satisfy your appetite. Your meals include lean protein, such as fish and other seafood; skinless white-meat poultry, and lean cuts of beef (vegetarians can enjoy meat substitutes, tofu, and beans); high-fiber veggies; reduced-fat cheeses; eggs; low-fat dairy; and healthy, unsaturated fats, such as those found in avocados, nuts and seeds, and extra-virgin olive and canola oils. During Phase 1, you’ll fill up on dishes like Chicken Breasts Stuffed with Spinach and Goat Cheese, Seared Pecan Salmon with Lentils, Garlic and Soy Grilled Pork Chops, and more. The South Beach Diet encourages snacking, so you’ll also get to choose two tasty snacks each day, like Spicy Nut Mix, reduced-fat cheese, and veggies with our zesty Peanut Dip. Plus, you’ll dine on delicious desserts (every day!), including Chilled Espresso Custard, Heavenly Lemon Mousse, and our famed Ricotta Crème. With all the options – from gourmet meals to on-the-go snacks to quick weeknight dinners – you won’t feel hungry or deprived!
- Phase 2. It is intended to produce long-term, steady weight loss. You’ll stay in Phase 2 until you reach a healthy weight. It’s also the perfect place to start for those people who have 10 pounds or less to lose, who don’t have problems with cravings, who don’t have excess belly fat, or who simply want to improve their health. In Phase 2, you’ll eat everything in Phase 1 plus good carbs, such as whole-grain bread, brown rice, whole-wheat pasta, fruits, and even more veggies, like sweet potatoes, pumpkin, and peas. Of course, you’ll continue to enjoy snacks and dessert too, including dark chocolate! In fact, you’ll eat delicious meals, like Coconut Chicken, Shrimp Scampi, Pesto Pasta Salad, and Pork and Black Bean Quesadillas. Side dishes include Nutty Brown Rice and Baked Sweet Potato Fries. And don’t forget snacks: Smoked Salmon Canapés with Horseradish Cream, Peppery Cheese Popcorn, and black bean dip with baked whole-grain tortilla chips are a few of the many snacks you’ll choose from. Then, cap off your dinner with a decadent dessert, like Green Tea Truffles, Chocolate Berry Cups, or Dark ChocolateBark with Walnuts. Best of all, you’ll eat all these delicious foods and still lose weight and get healthier.
- Phase 3. It is the lifestyle Phase, this is how you’ll eat and live 365 days a year. It’s the key to maintaining your new, healthy weight. You’ve adopted the South Beach Diet lifestyle, making smart food choices that fit the way you live. That’s what Phase 3 is all about, and it begins once you reach your healthy weight. In Phase 3, you’ll continue to follow the principles you learned in Phases 1 and 2, but because it’s the lifelong stage of the plan, it includes almost every kind of food and it allows for additional occasional indulgences. It is the key to maintaining a healthy weight for life. On Phase 3, you can dine on meals like Dutch Apple Pancakes (a terrific weekend brunch), Chicken Pot Pie, Asian Chicken Salad with Wonton Crisps, and Pepper-Spiked Beef Stew. Phase 3-friendly sides include Farmers’ Market Pasta Salad, Apple-Butternut Squash Soup, and corn on the cob. As for snacks, you can choose from fare like Triple Berry Cooler, Pecan-Stuffed Dates, and tropical fruit salad. And you’ll indulge in desserts like Chocolate Pie with Crispy Peanut Butter Crust and Chocolate Fondue. Imagine eating this way for the rest of your life!