The Carbohydrate Addict's Diet was designed by husband and wife duo Dr. Rachael Heller and Dr. Richard Heller. First published in 1993, the book is based on the premise that many people are addicted to carbs, which leads to unstable blood sugar and energy levels and ultimately results in weight gain. While the Carbohydrate Addict's Diet doesn't restrict food choices as much as some other low-carb plans, you should base your diet around certain foods and avoid others.
Pick of the Protein
When following the Carbohydrate Addict's Diet, you eat three meals per day. Your first two are strictly controlled, and rule no. 1 is to include protein in these meals. The protein can come from meats, poultry, fish and high-fat dairy products, notes John McDougall of Dr. McDougall's Health and Medical Center. Therefore, you can eat chicken, turkey, beef, pork, lamb, any type of fish, vegetarian meat replacements or cheese in these two meals.
The Green Stuff
While the first two meals of the day don't contain starchy carbs, you can have some carbs in the form of salad and vegetables. Look to fibrous items and lower-carb vegetables, such as spinach, cabbage, kale, asparagus, broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini and mushrooms. Avoid starchy vegetables, such as potatoes or sweet potatoes and squash, as well as fruits, as these are higher in sugar and carbohydrates.
Enter the Carbs
The diet includes a third meal each day, known as the reward meal. This meal can contain higher-carb items but still needs to be balanced and portion-controlled. The Hellers advise you to start your meal with a cup or two of salad, then split the rest of the meal into thirds. One-third should be protein and one-third vegetables, as before. The final third should be your carbs, such as bread, beans, rice, potatoes, fruit or even dessert.
Anything and Everything
In theory, you can eat any food you like when following the Carbohydrate Addict's Diet, but the key is to eat most of your carbs only at the reward meal. If you're using the diet as a way to lose weight, you may wish to cut down or eliminate higher-calorie sources of carbs at this meal or choose leaner protein sources at your other two meals, however.
- The Carbohydrate Addict's Diet Book; Dr. Rachael F. Heller and Dr. Richard F. Heller
- Dr. McDougall's Health and Medical Center: High Protein Diets
- The Carbohydrate Addict's Diet: Carbohydrate Addict's Official Frequently Asked Questions on Reward Meal Balance