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What Kind of Diet Would Prolong a Healthy Life - Essay Example

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One of the earliest recorded attempts in the Western world to diet for the purpose of improved health is that of Luigi Cornaro from fifteenth-sixteenth century Padua in Italy.His writings recording his lifestyle are both interesting and illuminating…
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What Kind of Diet Would Prolong a Healthy Life
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Download file to see previous pages He then beat all odds to live a long, productive and full life, well into his nineties; some sources claim that he died a centenarian. His writings recording his lifestyle are both interesting and illuminating. (Day - website)

As for vegetarianism - this has become a way of life, as part of religious practice among several communities in the East. Buddhism advocates vegetarianism; the adherents of Jainism - a religion whose followers are mainly confined to western India - are vegetarian;(Culture Cuisine) some Hindus are lacto-vegetarian (taking milk and milk products, but not eating fowl/ fish)1, or ovo-lacto-vegetarian (eating eggs as well)2. Even before the recent interest displayed in vegetarian diets in the West, there have been several well-known advocates of the vegetarian way of life as both moral and healthy (e.g. Pythagoras - Greek mathematician, and George Bernard Shaw) (Melwani 2006)
In the US, dieting became popular (starting of diet 'fads') with the Hollywood diet of the 1930's. This diet better known as the grapefruit diet involved eating only 585 calories per day, for 18 days including "only grapefruit, hard boiled eggs, green vegetables and melba toast." (Marples - website) Saccharine, a sugar substitute was introduced in 1958, and Aspartame in 1981. In 1919, the Continental Scale Company manufactured the first bathroom scales, and in 1942 the Metropolitan Insurance Company started using weight tables to decide insurance premiums - the closer you were to your ideal weight, the lower the premium. (Marples- website)
The Atkins Diet (AD) was introduced in 1972, with the publication of Dr. Atkins' 'Diet Revolution'. This diet received quite a bit of criticism, as its methodology was contrary to the 'expertspeak' of the day. It recommended almost a complete cutting down of carbohydrates, and eating only protein and fat. A few vegetables, but only in small doses, were permitted, as veggies also contain carbs. (Marples-website)
Let's look how the Atkins' Plan, as stated by Atkins, works. There are four phases in the operation of the AD. Anyone can commence using it by starting from any one phase and going on to the next. But it is advisable to start from Phase 1, as this phase "jump start(s) your weight loss". (The New Look of Nutrition Phase 1)
The first phase is the induction phase of 14 days, when significant weight loss is achieved by reducing the consumption of carbohydrates drastically. A dieter is permitted to have only 20 grams of net carbs (total carb grams less fibre grams) from salad vegetables. All types of non-vegetarian food is permitted - fowl, fish, shellfish, eggs and cheese. Here, there are some restrictions depending on the exact calorie count of these. (For instance, mussels and oysters contain some carbs, so this should be factored in before having them). Artificial sweeteners (like spenta) are permitted, but their carb value should be considered, and added in the computation of total carbs. A total of 8 glasses of water are to be drunk, over and above any other liquids. Anyone with a coffee addiction should give it up and only decaffeinated drinks should be taken. Oils like olive oil, canola or safflower are permitted. No fruit, bread, pasta or starchy vegetables, and no nuts or seeds, nor legumes, which combine protein and carbohydrates, can be had. Have three meals daily or have several smaller meals; in any case, don't go for more than 6 hours without eating. Ensure not to get constipated. If you do, take psyllium husk in ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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