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Hi Louise,

I'm not following SB but have done in the past. Basically you start off with a 2 week initial phase to reduce your cravings (like a detox I guess). This phase limits carbs - although not as much as other low carb diets. Typically I think you can eat lean meat, fish, eggs and seafood, most non starchy vegetables, limited amounts of more starchy veg and limited amounts of lentils and pulses. Low fat cheese and dairy is also allowed in limited amounts. Fat is limited and only the healthy fats are allowed.

Once you have done the 2 weeks and your body is completely free of sugar you can start to add in other healthy carbs such as fruit and grains. This is done slowly over several weeks until your weight loss slows down to 1-2 lbs per week. There is no measuring carb grams or calories although you do have to measure the amount of carb rich foods you eat.

It's a very healthy, low GI diet rather than a low carb diet. I loved it when I was on it and my weight loss the first 2 weeks was great and then lost about 1lb per week after that. I feel off the wagon on holiday where I ate sugar again and that was it :).

If I was going to start another diet I will probably loosely follow SB.

Hope this explains it - I might not be completely accurate as it was a few years since I last did SB, but I think it's the gist of it.
Just noticed this! That is it in the nutshell. It's pretty easy to follow.
I'd really recommend the newer South Beach supercharged book, as it explains more about what and how much to eat than the original. There have also been some changes. For instance two fat servings a day is now recommended (with specified amount e.g. tbsp of olive oil or 1/3 avocado). Pulses aren't limited, they just recommend a serving size and say go back for more if you want it. Cheese servings limited to 2 a day, nuts/seeds to one.

Also, Dr A is now very clear that he doens't want people to avoid carbs and go into ketosis (he has more detailed advice updates through his website every day). So he encourages having enough dairy and legumes in phase 1. He also really emphasises plenty of vegetables with every meal. And experimenting with the rules to see what works for you. I've been having 2 servings of nuts/seeds a day and that seems to be fine for me. He seems very wise.
I have the new book and agree, it's fantastic. I was having flax seed as my nuts serving because nuts are one of my favourite foods and even when not hungry, the temptation to gorge is too much for me!

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