Dr Arthur Agatston, MD, a cardiologist in Miami, started developing his own nutritious diet in the 1990s to help his patients avoid major illnesses, including type 2 diabetes and heart disease.
According to the South Beach Diet website, Dr Agatston's speciality gave rise to the name of the diet, which gained rapid traction in the Miami region.
Millions of copies of Agatston's weight-loss programme have been sold since its 2003 publication as The South Beach Diet, according to daily Health.
Saturated fats are restricted, while low-GI carbohydrates and lean proteins are encouraged.
A variant of the South Beach Diet that closely resembles the extremely low-carb, high-fat keto diet was introduced in 2019. Dr Agatston's book, 'The New Keto-Friendly South Beach Diet,’ has an explanation of it.
This variety has less net carbohydrates - which are determined by deducting the grams of fibre from the total grammes of carbohydrates - and more heart-healthy fats.
It isn't meant to assist you in achieving or staying in ketosis, a metabolic state where your body burns fat instead of carbohydrates, as is the case with a regular keto diet. Rather, it's made to encourage weight loss and general health by varying the items you eat.
Refined carbs are banned from the South Beach Diet; sugar and white wheat are the main offenders.
In order to lose weight, enhance their health, and lessen the cravings that cause them to eat too much and become caught in the cycle of hunger, overeating, and weight gain, those following the plan are advised to cut back on carbohydrates and concentrate on lean protein, low-fat dairy, and healthy carbohydrates like whole grains, vegetables, and fruit.
Compared to other low-carb diets such as the Atkins diet, the South Beach Diet differs slightly.
For example, according to the Atkins diet website, 16.7 percent of calories may come from saturated fat when following the diet.
Instead of increasing intake of good fats, the South Beach Diet suggests ingesting only 10 to 15 percent of calories from saturated fat.
The South Beach Diet resembles the DASH diet when followed exactly as suggested by having a lot of fruits, vegetables, nuts, lean meats, plant-based oils (not coconut oil), and low-fat dairy.
Actually, such a diet is heavily grounded on research. According to Healthline, studies on these diets have shown improvements in blood pressure and cholesterol.
Eating in advance of feeling hungry is a key component of the South Beach Diet.
In light of this, the South Beach Diet consists of three stages: Phase 1 lasts for two weeks and is designed to "reset your body" to help burn fat, speed up metabolism, and lessen cravings for sugar and starches.
Phase 2 involves adding healthy carbohydrates to your diet in order to lose weight steadily.
The third phase, known as weight-maintenance, teaches you how to keep your weight where it is without starving yourself or feeling deprived.
Agatston claims that following the plan will lower your cholesterol and reduce your chances of heart attack, stroke, diabetes, and several types of cancer, in addition to helping you lose weight over the long run.
It's crucial to remember that there is few or no research to back up these assertions.
Furthermore, a 2006 study that examined every nutrition fact offered by the South Beach Diet discovered that over 67% of them might not be supported by peer-reviewed research.