Two very popular diets doing the rounds these days are the Dukan Diet and the Paleo Diet. While in theory the Paleo diet is relatively new, in practice it has been the diet of the human race for as long as we have existed. It turns back the time and looks to our Paleolithic ancestors for culinary inspiration. The way the Paleolithics ate is the right way to do it – so we are told.
The Dukan Diet on the other hand, is indeed a new diet. It originated about three decades ago in the land where women are super skinny yet healthy, and that in itself is cause to give the diet some serious thought- at least by the majority of the female population that would aspire to be the same. Hailing from France, the Dukan Diet takes on the name of its creator, Dr. Pierre Dukan. Being a dietician and nutritionist, Dr. Dukan has come up with a high protein, low carb, low fat diet that has gained immense popularity in the past one decade.
The Dukan Diet
While structurally both diets are created different, there are some interesting overlaps that can be observed. The Dukan Diet is divided into four distinct phases that take the dieter through a transition process to the ultimate weight loss target. The diet kicks off with a bang in the “attack” mode when there is an instant drop in weight which goes a long way in providing the perfect catalytic motivation for new dieters. The second phase of “cruise” brings the weight loss pace into a steadier stream and regulates at about dropping to 1 kg per week. The “stabilization” phase works at maintaining the achieved target weight without regaining the lost pounds and slowly re introduces forbidden foods back into the diet. The final “consolidation” is a lifelong promise to stick to the principles of the diet forever.
Does that sound like something realistic to do? Well, for the most part, the high protein and low fat, low carb formula is prevalent in many other diets. Another one that has gained successful momentum is the Atkins. However, the part where forbidden foods are allowed back on the menu is a tumultuous decision. After all, wasn’t it these very foods that led to the weight gain in the first place? And what is the guarantee that after being reintroduced into the diet, they will not wreak havoc as they did before?
Of course advocates of the Dukan diet preach that after achieving your target weight you may not be tempted by such trivialities, but seriously, that would require some tremendous will power. If going back to weight gaining foods is what the Dukan diet consents, then it is perhaps nothing more than a transient quick fix to cursory weight loss and not really a healthy eating pattern to follow for life. Better to stay away from them bad foods entirely- me thinks!
The Paleo Diet
The Paleo diet on the contrary prohibits certain foods and then sticks to this principal even after attaining the desired weight and there are no cyclical eating patterns. Like the Dukan diet, Paleo followers are not restricted to measuring food portions or counting calories but can eat what they want and when they want. Since the foods are all nutritiously well equipped there is no need to binge on empty calories. The initial stages of the Dukan Diet and the Paleo diet are similar in their high protein, low carb content but Paleo allows fats to be derived from healthy sources while The Dukan Diet staves all fat. Paleo prescribes all permissible food choices from the get go and there are no allowances for forbidden items on the diet.
Paleo Diet Basics (VIDEO):
What about Grains?
The one huge difference between these two diets is the component of grains. Paleo principals are built around the complete elimination of grains, legumes and other harvested products (paleo food list). Any artificially processed food does not feature on the Paleo menu but the Dukan way of eating brings these back onto the dinner plate. I suppose in this respect the Paleo Diet is more restrictive but then it is also more consistent. If all bad foods and troublemakers are sacked for good then there is no danger of reverting back into old eating habits. You decide which diet will give you longer lasting results.