If you've found this website helpful, please click the Donate button. Thanks for the support.

Share this page if you think a friend might like it:

Nutrition Guide

Bookmark and Share

 Like the site? Sign up for the FREE newsletter. I'll send a new article once or twice a month. Unsubscribe

Bookmark and Share

Email Address
Continue to learn more about Diet Programs: Diets Programs Home

Diet Programs:

The South Beach Diet


A. About the Diet
B. The Cost
C. Pros and Cons
D. Conclusion
E. How to Start
F. Sample Diet Routine


Created by Dr. Arthur Agatson who is a cardiologist, this diet is designed to contrast those other restrictive and bland diets. This diet is on the opposite side of spectrum to that of the Atkins diet which restricts carbs to a minimum.

This program is designed to slowly decrease your cravings for sugar, sweets, and other bad carbohydrates over time as this diet maintains you blood glucose (sugar) levels maintained.

Your blood sugar is what spikes after you eat a heavy meal full of fats, sugars, etc. and is what gives you that “high” after eating. This is why many feel intense cravings for food and the South Beach Diet will slowly wean your body from these intense cravings.

Many South Beach diet foods can be found in your local grocery store and signing up and becoming a member will allow you to view a diet specifically tailored to your body and goals.

The diet is a 3 phase plan which claims you will lose 8-12 pounds within the first two weeks as long as you follow their guidelines.

Phases of the Diet:

Phase 1:

During this phase you will start eating lean meats and fish, low-fat cheese, eggs, vegetables, beans, and nuts. Sugars are completely done away with and starches such as bread, pasta, rice, fruits, milk, potatoes, and honey are also removed.

Phase 2:

During this phase you will begin to re-introduce fruits, whole grain fruits, breads, and pastas back into your diet. You will pick one carbohydrate and put that into one meal each day for a week.

After the week is over your are to bring one more carbohydrate into your meals per day and this is done until you have 2 or 3 healthy carbohydrates into your body per day. This slow introduction of carbs back into your diet helps you control cravings.

Phase 2 continues until you reach your desired weight loss goal.

Phase 3:

This is the maintenance phase of the diet that you will apply your knowledge from the other two phases once you have your weight under control. Now you can explore the South Beach website and books for many recipes that will help you keep the weight off.

B. The cost

This program is currently (2011) providing a week of services for only $5 week. This will go towards all of the following:

• A fully interactive dieting experience
• Tools to track your weight, phase, and diet goals
• A personal meal planner and nutrition tool
• Member questions answered by Dr. Agatston
• Support from a community of thousands like you
• Over 1,000 delicious and healthy recipes
• The flexibility and support to help you succeed

C. Pros and Cons


1. Maintenance Plan. This diet is one of the few that have a maintenance part
    of the diet to help keep the weight off.

2. Thousands of Satisfied Participants. How could thousands who have
    experienced the diet be wrong?

3. Support. The South Beach Diet membership program aslso offers expert
    advice and support.

4. Updated Research. In 2008 the “South Beach Diet: Supercharged” was
    released which had many modifications and evidenced based applications to
    the diet to make it better than before.

5. Diabetic Aware. There are food options for diabetics so everyone can
    participate in this program.

6. Care-free. You don’t have to make decisions on every little thing. You select
    what you like online and they tell what to eat and when to eat it. It’s that

7. Over 1000 Recipes. With the huge selection in dishes, you are sure to never
    get bored with the same old food day in and day out as most programs have
    you follow.


1. Fake sugar. Many products contain artificial sweeteners or sugar alcohols
    which some people won’t tolerate very well or notice a huge difference in

2. Science assumptions. Not all of the research is accurate as not all foods will
    cause the blood sugar to rise uncontrollable unless you are diabetic as the
    body maintains it quite well.

3. No sugar. Elimination of sugar makes it hard to find carbohydrates that will
    work for the diet.

4. No exercise guidance. While this program does not give exercise instruction,
    you can simply visit this site for all your fitness needs and information.

5. Not vegetarian friendly. Vegetarians will find it difficult to make food choices
    as there are not a huge amount of options for them.

D. Conclusion

This program is great for those who get uncontrollable sugar or carbohydrate cravings which this diet aims to take control of. This plan also is cheap in comparison to many other programs out there and is easy to follow for those who need guidance and information on nutrition. If you are determined to follow the guidelines for the first few weeks, this program will have a good outlook for you.

For those who are vegetarian or have trouble making abrupt changes to their diet, this program may too much of a shock for you. It involves completely dropping sugar and carbs while slowly bringing healthy carbs back into your diet. Cravings in this initial stage may be too difficult for some to maintain.

E. How to Start the South Beach Diet Program

If you would like to find more information on this diet program, here are a few good links to information:

To see your diet profile and how much weight you need to lose:


To view a typical day of the diet:


To sign-up for the South Beach Diet:


F. Example of the South Beach Diet:

Phase One:

Follow this phase 14 days


2 scrambled eggs with fresh herbs and mushrooms. 2 rashers grilled lean bacon. A small glass of tomato juice and a decaf coffee or tea.

Morning Snack

1 small chunk reduced-fat Cheddar cheese.


Chicken Caesar salad (no croutons) with 2tbsp Caesar dressing.

Afternoon Snack

3 tablespoons low-fat cottage cheese with 1 tomato and cucumber.


Grilled salmon and steamed asparagus and a salad made from mixed leaves, cucumbers, green peppers, cherry tomatoes and 2 tablespoons of low-sugar dressing.


Lemon Ricotta Crème made by mixing 115g/4oz reduced-fat ricotta cheese with a little sweetener and ¼tsp each of lemon zest and vanilla extract. Serve chilled.

Phase Two:

Stay with this until you've reached your desired weight loss goal. Your weight loss should slow down to about 1-2lb a week!


Bowl of porridge made with 115g/4oz porridge oats mixed with 225ml/8floz skimmed milk, topped with cinnamon and 1tbsp chopped walnuts. Plus 15 strawberries and a decaf coffee or tea.

Morning Snack

1 small fat-free yoghurt.


1 slice Granary bread topped with 75g/3oz lean roast beef, lettuce, tomato, onion and mustard.

Afternoon Snack

1 apple and 1 triangle of low-fat cheese spread.


Chicken and vegetable stir fry made from 2tsp rapeseed oil, 50g/20z cooked chicken breast, 75g/30z mixed vegetables, 1tsp soy sauce and 75g/30z fresh spinach. Serve with a salad made from mixed leaves, cucumber, green peppers, cherry tomatoes and tossed with a little olive oil and vinegar.


1 pear with 1tbsp ricotta cheese and a couple of crushed walnuts.

Phase Three:

Now you've reached your target, follow this plan for life!


1 scrambled egg with 2 rashers grilled lean bacon and 1 slice Granary bread. Plus 1 orange and a decaf coffee or tea.


Tuna salad made from 1 small can tuna in brine, romaine lettuce, cucumber, 1 tomato, ½ medium-sized avocado, 3 sticks of celery and 10 radishes. Serve with a dressing made from 4tsp olive oil, 2tbsp lime juice, garlic and pepper.


Grilled chicken breast with 6tbsp couscous, steamed asparagus and a salad made from romaine lettuce, 7 black olives, a sliver of feta cheese and 2tbsp low-sugar dressing.


1 pear poached in red wine.

Rate this diet: