The South Beach Diet was created in 2003 by cardiologist Arthur Agatston. This weight loss diet, named after an area of Miami, is lower in carbohydrates but higher in protein and healthy fats. It is healthier than a typical unbalanced nutrition plan, but it’s not too strict, and the dieters are not required to count carbs.

Here, we’ll lay out some facts about this type of diet - so you can decide if you’d like to integrate it in your life.

Credit: Unsplash

Credit: Unsplash

This diet is perfect for those who want to start cultivating healthier eating habits that would stick with you throughout your life and/or lose some weight.

The South Beach Diet teaches its followers about eliminating “bad” carbs from your diet in order to keep your blood sugar at bay. High blood sugar may lead to diabetes or at least boost your appetite which stimulates weight gain. The diet also tells about which fats are healthy for you, and encourages eating more fruits and veggies.

Since 2003, the diet has been modified and now includes some tips on healthy exercise routines to accompany the healthy eating plan. Regular workouts help your metabolism and overcoming the so-called weight-loss plateaus when your weight refuses to budge after reaching a certain point.

Credit: Unsplash

Credit: Unsplash

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There are three phases of the South Beach Diet:

#1. Phase one takes two weeks. Within this timeframe, you are expected to eliminate virtually all carbohydrates from your diet. This means no bread, no rice, no fruit or pasta for you, and no alcohol or juice fruit. Instead, you are expected to eat lean-protein foods such as poultry (no skin), soy products, lean beef and seafood. You’re allowed to throw in an occasional vegetable or low-fat dairy product. Nuts, avocados and seeds are also allowed.

Below is a typical South Beach Diet Phase-1 menu for the day:

Breakfast: Baked eggs with spinach and ham, or an omelette with smoked salmon, accompanied with some coffee or tea.

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Credit: Unsplash

Lunch: A veggie salad with shrimp or scallops, some ice tea or sparkling water.

Dinner: Grilled tuna or pork plus some grilled vegetables, and a salad.

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Dessert: Enjoy some ricotta cheesecake!

You’re “allowed” to snack during the day as well, as long as your snack is roasted chickpeas or a Muenster cheese and turkey roll-up.

Credit: Freepik

Credit: Freepik

#2. Phase two is when you start shedding extra pounds until you meet your weight goals. Here, you’ll start reintroducing brown rice, more veggies and fruits, whole-grain breads and whole-wheat pasta into your diet.

#3. Phase three is basically maintaining the habits you’ve developed in phases one and two, and you can enjoy all types of foods from now on - but in moderation.

What’s in it for you? As for weight loss, the dieters are expected to lose eight to 13 pounds during Phase one (that is, in two weeks’ time), with most of the weight gone from your midsection. During Phase two, you’ll start losing one to two pounds per week. This may seem a bit slow, but at this pace, you’ll more likely to maintain the weight loss.

Credit: Freepik

Credit: Freepik

Apart from weight loss, the South Beach Diet’s long-term healthy eating plan can be beneficial for your overall health, for instance, improve your blood cholesterol levels.

Of course, you may want to have a quick check-point with your doctor to consult him about the diet you’re about to start, to know exactly what’s healthy for you and what’s not.

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The BetterMe Team wants you and those close to you to live a healthy, happy life! Your health is a valuable thing; look after your body and your mind so that you can live your life to the fullest – Remember you only get one!

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