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Paleo vs. Brand Name Low Carb Diets

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created August 02, 2012 at 7:22 PM

I have never followed a brand name low carb diet (i.e. Atkins, South Beach, Ideal Protein) so I am wondering what the motivation behind them is. They preach that they are getting people healthier, however the prepackaged food that they sell to their clients may, in fact be low carb, but tastes horrific and is full of nasty chemicals. My question, is why anyone would purchase this food and put it in their bodies in an attempt to become healthier when there are options out their like Paleo...

I would like to add that I am not COMPARING or LIKENING Atkins (or other such name brand diets) to Paleo. I was merely using Atkins as an example because it has a brand name that markets food. Technically, this question could refer to any 'diet' brand (Snack Wells, Slim Fast, etc). I am simply asking why anyone would buy rotten, chemical ridden food to lose weight, when they could simply cut that crap out of their diet entirely and eat food that tastes good and is legit healthy.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on August 04, 2012
at 02:10 PM

No, I haven't tried it. But others have and others choose to continue to buy it. You might not. Hello, free market economics.

46c9fbd45b82453f6a2dfe614a853314

(1876)

on August 04, 2012
at 12:37 AM

Yeah, but have you ever tried their food? It tastes horrible!!!

4ecfe8ee47ea62a11be516cd59701a4b

(30)

on August 03, 2012
at 02:35 PM

Indeed - the diet promoted today by the brand owners looks little like what Atkins believed in.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 03, 2012
at 12:14 PM

It's just as bad as any other artificial sweetener imo. It is obesigenic and may also interfere with endocrine hormones.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on August 03, 2012
at 11:49 AM

what's wrong with stevia?

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on August 03, 2012
at 11:48 AM

ignorance comes to mind

Ef26f888ed248de197c37a4cb04ef4a7

(584)

on August 03, 2012
at 10:13 AM

"ONLY 3 NET CARBS". It's funny they're not usually any lower calorie than regular oreo's and they're just as bad health wise. Although they do look pretty damn delicious.

6498694060d879a7960b35913539b75f

(1307)

on August 03, 2012
at 05:20 AM

I was an Atkins patient, and didn't eat any processed foods except the occasional shake. Back then the shakes were very different. He rolled over in his grave when they decided to put soy in them.

98bf2ca7f8778c79cd3f6c962011cfdc

(24286)

on August 03, 2012
at 12:18 AM

ANd the same reason people buy 100 calorie packs and the like. No need to pick on low carb like the OP did. People wanting to lose weight by any method may be tempted to buy junk food.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on August 02, 2012
at 11:32 PM

Reminds of paleo bread.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on August 02, 2012
at 11:31 PM

I'm not sure I'd go down that road. Not that we could ever measure this but I think a SAD meal of say turkey burger on whole wheat with a side salad is any worse than some Atkins bars, pork rinds, and a half pound of CAFO bacon is.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on August 02, 2012
at 11:29 PM

Absolutely spot on. Those programs, and paleo too, are focused on weight loss. Paleo books too. Just look at the cover of the books. Mind you I'm not knocking. Nothing wrong with advertising a result that many actually do get from eating paleo; even if it is only because they're inadvertently lowering calories and that is why they're losing weight - not because avoiding groans legumes and dairy makes magic happen.

46c9fbd45b82453f6a2dfe614a853314

(1876)

on August 02, 2012
at 11:12 PM

I'm only comparing Paleo and low-carb in the sense that many paleo-ers do tend to eat lower carb than the SAD only because they aren't consuming grains and processed foods.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 02, 2012
at 10:54 PM

Take a look at "Primal Fuel"- guar gum, maltodextrin, sodium caseinate, stevia

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 02, 2012
at 10:53 PM

Take a look at "Primal Fuel"- guar gum, maltodextrin, sodium caseinate .

3ab5e1b9eba22a071f653330b7fc9579

(2262)

on August 02, 2012
at 09:57 PM

The original atkins had the right idea, or was very close. Now atkins is a brand name used to seel packaged junk food, sad how far off course they have gotten

5e63e3fa78e998736106a4a5b9aef58c

on August 02, 2012
at 09:47 PM

One thing to Atkins' credit: he insisted that exercise was "non-negotiable." He was a cardiologist, and wanted people to get off their asses--he understood that diet alone is not enough. And, frankly, nobody would have read "Dr. Atkins' New *Eating* Revolution." Consumers will buy diet books by the crapton because losing weight is their primary goal. Long-term health, and a sustainable way of eating? That requires thinking about the future and making a long-term commitment to eating and moving and living differently. Not many people are willing to do that, sad to say.

5e63e3fa78e998736106a4a5b9aef58c

on August 02, 2012
at 09:40 PM

+1. The original Atkins diet is really simple, and can be easily followed by eating whole foods. That's how I did it, and it worked, and I ate great food and was satisfied. None of the crappy LC processed food product is necessary to do Atkins/LC. But as long as there are people who want to try Atkins, while still whining about how they "can't live without" bread/pasta/cookies/crap, they will buy awful fake foods as long as they're "low carb."

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 02, 2012
at 08:18 PM

Maybe you should take a look at some of the non-primal ingredients in Primal Fuel.

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10 Answers

4
363d0a0277a8b61ada3a24ab3ad85d5a

(4642)

on August 02, 2012
at 07:35 PM

The people who run Atkins sell all sorts of junk, but that largely happened after Dr. Atkins died, so they were really trying to profit off of his name and ideas. There are only so many books they could sell, so they branched out to try to make more money. I think what people need to do is see past that, stick to the message and avoid the junk. Though I think South Beach always preached lower fat items, and sold junky packaged food for longer, but in the case of Atkins, I think it really happened later on, after he passed.

4ecfe8ee47ea62a11be516cd59701a4b

(30)

on August 03, 2012
at 02:35 PM

Indeed - the diet promoted today by the brand owners looks little like what Atkins believed in.

6498694060d879a7960b35913539b75f

(1307)

on August 03, 2012
at 05:20 AM

I was an Atkins patient, and didn't eat any processed foods except the occasional shake. Back then the shakes were very different. He rolled over in his grave when they decided to put soy in them.

5e63e3fa78e998736106a4a5b9aef58c

on August 02, 2012
at 09:40 PM

+1. The original Atkins diet is really simple, and can be easily followed by eating whole foods. That's how I did it, and it worked, and I ate great food and was satisfied. None of the crappy LC processed food product is necessary to do Atkins/LC. But as long as there are people who want to try Atkins, while still whining about how they "can't live without" bread/pasta/cookies/crap, they will buy awful fake foods as long as they're "low carb."

4
Ebb10603524dd22621c1155dd7ddf106

(19150)

on August 02, 2012
at 07:28 PM

It's been said many times, but please don't conflate paleo/primal/whatever with "low carb". It may be lower carb than SAD eating, but it's not necessarily low like LC/VLC dieters eat.

Also, yes: an Atkins low carb oreo cookie is still junk food. ;-)

http://www.atkins.com/Products/Endulge/Chocolate-Creme-Sandwich-Cookies.aspx paleo-vs.-brand-name-low-carb-diets

I think the promise of branded crap like this is "changing your diet, without really changing your diet." Technically, they deliver on this; realistically, I wouldn't eat this stuff if you paid me.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on August 02, 2012
at 11:32 PM

Reminds of paleo bread.

3ab5e1b9eba22a071f653330b7fc9579

(2262)

on August 02, 2012
at 09:57 PM

The original atkins had the right idea, or was very close. Now atkins is a brand name used to seel packaged junk food, sad how far off course they have gotten

46c9fbd45b82453f6a2dfe614a853314

(1876)

on August 02, 2012
at 11:12 PM

I'm only comparing Paleo and low-carb in the sense that many paleo-ers do tend to eat lower carb than the SAD only because they aren't consuming grains and processed foods.

Ef26f888ed248de197c37a4cb04ef4a7

(584)

on August 03, 2012
at 10:13 AM

"ONLY 3 NET CARBS". It's funny they're not usually any lower calorie than regular oreo's and they're just as bad health wise. Although they do look pretty damn delicious.

3
41dfb1a4fecb38d24075ff52f13ccb28

on August 02, 2012
at 07:39 PM

They aren't necessarily incompatible. You can follow Atkins and Paleo at the same time. Atkins wrote his first book in 1972 I believe, and the products didn't come out until many years later.

Why do people buy low carb junk... for the same reason people buy diet pills, I guess. It's marketed as a quick fix.

98bf2ca7f8778c79cd3f6c962011cfdc

(24286)

on August 03, 2012
at 12:18 AM

ANd the same reason people buy 100 calorie packs and the like. No need to pick on low carb like the OP did. People wanting to lose weight by any method may be tempted to buy junk food.

2
32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on August 03, 2012
at 02:34 AM

Ooh ooh ooh, paleo self-righteousness! Sign me up!

Why packaged, processed foods? Why not? Convenience, flavor, take your pick. Heck, they're still "better" than the "real thing" at times.

46c9fbd45b82453f6a2dfe614a853314

(1876)

on August 04, 2012
at 12:37 AM

Yeah, but have you ever tried their food? It tastes horrible!!!

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on August 04, 2012
at 02:10 PM

No, I haven't tried it. But others have and others choose to continue to buy it. You might not. Hello, free market economics.

2
7f8bc7ce5c34aae50408d31812c839b0

(2698)

on August 02, 2012
at 07:38 PM

Really, you CAN apply paleo/primal concepts to any of the name brand diets if you want. Atkins, for example, done the original way before its commercialization could easily be done paleo compliant.

1
0408fb6c082971b0559503b77eb9483c

on August 03, 2012
at 02:18 PM

There is a modern variant of Atkins called "natural atkins"

The reason there is this natural variant- and one for the South Beach diet??? (I can't say for others, but I have experience with both of these)

Marketing and money.

If you go back to the beginning of the Atkins plan, you find it is quite good. Meat, small amounts of specific types of dairy, specific vegetables in the right quantity. It's great!!!!

The small section in the original book on how to fake desserts has more to do with weaning you off your cravings/programming than trying to make sugar-free jello into a 3 times a day food staple.

Then, somewhere along the line, marketers got involved- and they came up with atkins bread and atkins bars (most of which have twice the carbs you get on induction phase diet- IN ONE SERVING)- atkins this and atkins that. It's sad.

But these two commercial diets, at least, started as diets, not marketing campaigns.

1
5e63e3fa78e998736106a4a5b9aef58c

on August 02, 2012
at 09:53 PM

My cynical Self says it's because the people who buy that stuff are stupid, lazy, spoiled, self-indulgent, gullible, and want the quickest possible fix.

My idealist Self begs to differ! But when she tries to come up with a good counterargument she ends up sighing wearily and admitting my cynical Self is right.

1
7b9b5de13a30c823dae64a971cb14add

on August 02, 2012
at 07:59 PM

I don't know if I think that Atkins, South Beach etc really have a focus on "health." Its all weight loss all the time from what I've seen and read after following both diets for pretty substantial amounts of time. And not JUST regular ol' weight loss but SUPER FAST OMG UR SO SKINNY weight loss.

5e63e3fa78e998736106a4a5b9aef58c

on August 02, 2012
at 09:47 PM

One thing to Atkins' credit: he insisted that exercise was "non-negotiable." He was a cardiologist, and wanted people to get off their asses--he understood that diet alone is not enough. And, frankly, nobody would have read "Dr. Atkins' New *Eating* Revolution." Consumers will buy diet books by the crapton because losing weight is their primary goal. Long-term health, and a sustainable way of eating? That requires thinking about the future and making a long-term commitment to eating and moving and living differently. Not many people are willing to do that, sad to say.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on August 02, 2012
at 11:29 PM

Absolutely spot on. Those programs, and paleo too, are focused on weight loss. Paleo books too. Just look at the cover of the books. Mind you I'm not knocking. Nothing wrong with advertising a result that many actually do get from eating paleo; even if it is only because they're inadvertently lowering calories and that is why they're losing weight - not because avoiding groans legumes and dairy makes magic happen.

1
F0a3e3f17d9a740810ac37ff2353a9f3

(3804)

on August 02, 2012
at 07:30 PM

It's a crazy world.

I suspect that people by pre-packaged food of any kind just because it's more convenient. Keep in mind, though, that however awful an Atkins meal may be compared to a Paleo alternative, it's almost certainly healthier than the SAD alternative.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on August 02, 2012
at 11:31 PM

I'm not sure I'd go down that road. Not that we could ever measure this but I think a SAD meal of say turkey burger on whole wheat with a side salad is any worse than some Atkins bars, pork rinds, and a half pound of CAFO bacon is.

-1
59fa7cd87fb9d669adf21e5cf3e7ada5

on August 02, 2012
at 08:09 PM

Primal would never sell processed crap like supplements.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 02, 2012
at 10:54 PM

Take a look at "Primal Fuel"- guar gum, maltodextrin, sodium caseinate, stevia

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 02, 2012
at 08:18 PM

Maybe you should take a look at some of the non-primal ingredients in Primal Fuel.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on August 03, 2012
at 11:49 AM

what's wrong with stevia?

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 02, 2012
at 10:53 PM

Take a look at "Primal Fuel"- guar gum, maltodextrin, sodium caseinate .

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 03, 2012
at 12:14 PM

It's just as bad as any other artificial sweetener imo. It is obesigenic and may also interfere with endocrine hormones.

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