How Do You Start the Atkins Diet?

The Atkins site describes the first phase of the diet as the Induction phase that kick-starts the weight loss. During this phase, the dieter creates a personal carb balance, which gives him the maximum number of grams of carbohydrates that he may consume while continuing to lose weight, keeping his appetite under control as he stays alert and energized.

The Atkins site explains that the Induction phase usually lasts about two weeks unless the dieter wants to continue longer to lose excess pounds rather quickly using the Fast Track. Under the Fast Track plan, the dieter continues the Induction phase until he is 15 pounds away from his weight loss goal. In the Induction phase, the dieter must have three meals and two snacks a day or have five or six small meals. The dieter must also consume 20 grams of net carbs a day with 12 to 15 grams of these carbs in the form of foundation vegetables.

Each meal must also contain proficient protein. The dieter must consume fats to accompany a carb snack. The Induction phase also includes drinking eight glasses of water a day and avoiding dehydration or electrolyte imbalance. Dieters must also watch for hidden carbs, use sugar substitutes in moderation, use only Atkins low-carbohydrate products and consume acceptable foods for the first phase, according to the official website.