What to Eat on Atkins Diet? Before embarking on the journey of Atkins diet, it helps to take some time and sort your dos and don’ts. Making a list of foods that you can and cannot eat would be a great way to start with. We are aware that the Atkins diet primarily focuses on restricting carbs and emphasizes consuming protein and healthy fats. In that regard, the first step to your weight loss journey would be to limit carbs from your meal plans.

As suggested, you don’t have to remove carbs completely from the diet but limit them as per the suggested amount. Because with the phases of Atkins diet, you are suggested to increase the carb intake anyway. So, we keep our carbs in the loop, limit them for a certain time period but never eliminate them altogether.

What to Eat on Atkins DietTo categorize the foods that can be eaten during the Atkins diet, we have brought together a list of foods. In order to make it easily understandable and to avoid any confusion, the list shall contain all nutrient groups separately. The idea is to differentiate between the foods that can be consumed from the ones that need to be limited.

Atkins Food List

 What To Eat On Atkins Diet?  To kick start the process of Atkins weight loss, here is a list of basic foods containing carbohydrates, protein, healthy fats, vitamins and minerals:

 Low Carb, Healthy Vegetables

One of the safest and most healthy food options for the Atkins diet are leafy vegetables. To restrict your carbs and fill your appetite at the same time, you need to incorporate vegetables that serve the purpose.

Some of the vegetables that can be consumed are:

  • Radishes (raw)
  • Spinach (raw)
  • Lettuce (raw)
  • Olives
  • Celery
  • Broccoli
  • Avocado
  • Cucumber Cauliflower
  • Zucchini
  • Kale
  • Asparagus
  • Bell pepper
  • Turnip
  • Cabbage
  • Garlic
  • Tomatoes
  • Mushrooms

All these vegetables if consumed by keeping the carb count under 20g per day, are great sources of high nutrition. These not only provide vitamins like K, C and A, but are also high in fiber. Fiber is one of the key components to lose weight as it keeps the body full for a longer time. Therefore, the idea behind Atkins diet is to incorporate low carb vegetables as part of your daily diet. One serving of any of these vegetables, which is roughly one cup in size would make complete portion of a meal.

What to Eat on Atkins DietMeat, Poultry and Seafood

What to Eat on Atkins Diet?  Meat, poultry and seafood are some of the biggest sources of protein and the stars of Atkins diet’s meal plans.

The reason Atkins diet is also known as high protein diet is because of its emphasis on protein-rich foods. That is because protein gives required energy to the body and satiates hunger at the same time. It also protects lean muscle mass, allowing your body to lose fat only. As per Atkins diet daily protein recommendation, a portion containing 4-6 ounces of protein would be sufficient. Some of the great sources of protein from meat when you are following the Atkins plans are:

  • Beef
  • Chicken
  • Duck
  • Lamb
  • Pork
  • Turkey
  • Veal
  • Salmon
  • Tuna
  • Sardines
  • Cod
  • Flounder
  • Shrimp
  • Lobster

These are some great options for your protein intake while you are trying out the Atkins diet. The best thing about this whole diet plan is the variety of food you can choose from despite the restriction that is put on carbs. The listed meat, poultry and seafood options contain all the major nutrients that the body needs to function optimally. Therefore, a serving of 4-5 ounces with every meal would be a safe choice to make.

Along with these, eggs are also great source of protein and healthy fats. It is always suggested to incorporate eggs into your daily meal plans while you are on the Atkins diet. The nutritious benefits of eggs and their filling properties make them a favorite option for many who religiously follow the diet.

Also Read: What is Paleo Vegan? Difference between Vegan and Paleo


It might sound crazy but cheese is one the foods that are recommended and encouraged on the Atkins diet daily meals. This item does contain carbs therefore, the recommended amount that can be consumed is 3-4 ounces of cheese per day.

Cheddar cheese, Feta cheese, Parmesan cheese, Cottage cheese, Bleu cheese, Cream cheese and Mozzarella are some of the types that are suggested. Cheese is a great source of energy, contains less carbs and healthy fats, an ideal for Atkins diet.

Fats and Oils

Atkins diet is known for emphasizing the intake of protein as well as healthy fats. Fats come from a variety of sources that include oils of different kinds. On a daily basis, it is recommended that you consumer 2-4 tablespoons of oil or butter for added fats. Some options for oils that can be added to the daily meal plan are:

  • Olive oil
  • Canola oil
  • Walnut oil
  • Soybean oil
  • Sesame oil
  • Sunflower oil

Butter and mayonnaise also make great sources of fats in the same suggested quantity.


There are times when we do not feel like eating and a want a certain beverage as an alternative to a healthy, fulfilling meal. Atkins suggests to drink 64 ounces of water everyday as water is an essential for weight loss and good health.

Herb tea, clear broth, decaffeinated coffee and tea, diet soda, unflavored soy milk are some beverages that can be consumed. An everyday use of these beverages would ensure progress in the process of weight loss.

Also Read: Top 10 Foods to Avoid on Paleo Diet (Beginner Guide)

Foods to Avoid

We have already discussed the numerous types of foods that one can eat in a certain proportion on Atkins diet. To get desired results from the diet, it is necessary to keep an eye on the foods that need to be avoided.

There are some food types such as sugar, refined carbs, processed carbs, starchy vegetables, grains that you have to cut down, in order for the diet to work.  However, some of these such as starchy vegetables and carbs can be consumed in the later stages of the Atkins diet. The most restrictive stage is the first phase, which is also known as induction. The other free stages allow you to increase your carb intake but not as much as you would eat on a normal day.

The Bottom Line

The Atkins diet is considered as a revolutionary diet in the world of weight loss and overall body fitness. They claim that limiting carb intake initially for the first phase is a sure secret to kick start your weight loss. The diet is divided into four phases primarily because the intake of carbs increases with every phase. However, they still suggest that you keep check on your carbs to obtain optimum results.

The idea behind the diet is to train the body to burn fats by cutting carbs and providing other nutrients in specific amount and proportion. Atkins promotes a healthy low-carb lifestyle that is definitely challenging at first because everybody loves carbs. Once you succeed at restricting your daily carb intake, the rest of the process becomes easy.

Eat Right Not LessWhat to Eat on Atkins Diet? The motto of the diet is to eat right not less, hence the long list of foods that are suggested. Atkins is definitely a must try if you want to lose weight and maintain sound health at the same time.


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