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Old 01-02-2013, 04:50 PM   #1
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Difference between Induction and OWL with induction-level carbs?

Is there a real difference between Induction and eating from the expanded Ongoing Weight Loss food list, but at 20 net carbs per day?

I see a lot of controversy about whether certain foods are allowed on Induction, especially flax meal (nuts/seeds are an OWL food item).

I re-read the "Rules of Induction" yesterday, and it mentioned using flax seeds / meal to avoid constipation. So I suspect flax meal, despite being technically a nut/seed product, is permitted on Induction as long as daily net carbs don't exceed 20.

But as for the other foods that are clearly OWL - if you can stay at 20 carbs/day with the expanded food list, what is the advantage of the more restrictive food list for Induction?
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Old 01-02-2013, 08:14 PM   #2
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I can't answer this scientifically, and not sure there is an answer/advantage to strict induction, but I followed a modified induction, eating net 20 carbs a day but adding nuts/seeds/more dairy than allowed in regular induction, and lost 30 lbs in just over 3 months. For me, it was just fine and gave me more choices food-wise.
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Old 01-02-2013, 11:08 PM   #3
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two thoughts on that, Colin.

first, induction is just as much to get your mind adapted to low carbing as it is your body. and eating a very limited list of foods for some period can help that, I am convinced. for one thing, you then appreciate the other things that are low carb, like nuts, more.

second, a lot of people just don't get into ketosis and weight loss as easily as others do. and calories count, even at the beginning. limiting cheese, for example, can really limit calories, since that is one induction food most of us can snack on pretty heavily if we aren't careful.

having said that, you will probably lose fine doing what you say. men generally have an easier time, and you are not apparently either old or very obese which also suggest possible problems losing. try it and see.

I do think you have a window of about six months when you start restricting your eating to lose weight when it's pretty easy. then your body musters its defenses and changes hormone levels to try to STOP that starving stuff. So anything you do to lose more in the first six months can be beneficial too.

good luck.
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Old 01-03-2013, 02:17 AM   #4
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The reason induction has such a strict list is because it takes out all of the items that the majority of people will have issues with despite being lower carb. some people find that nuts or soft cheese for example really stall them especially if they are not completely into their bodies fat burning zone. Don't forget that although you are in ketosis it does take some time for this to embed itself as your bodies preferred way of eating and you are more likely to bounce out if you are not careful over the first few weeks.
Personally I also feel that if people can't commit to a 2 week period then how are they going to commit to a lifetime change of eating LC. A lot of people do make the mistake of feeling that induction needs to go on and on, but even if you stick to 20 carbs daily and move up the food list you are doing OWL not induction in my mind, if that makes sense.
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Old 01-03-2013, 06:55 AM   #5
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Induction was intended to last 2 weeks (minimum) and to restrict eating to very specific things, excluding nuts for example. It really helps a lot of people get into ketosis, eliminate cravings, and experience weight loss. After 2 weeks, Dr. Atkins says you can continue with Induction or climb the carb ladder.

Most people on these boards who do LC are doing OWL, even if they eat Induction level carbs. Some people never do Induction. I personally think there is a benefit to doing a clean 2-week Induction before adding things, but that's just my opinion.
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Old 01-03-2013, 03:58 PM   #6
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What AsmallerME said. And while seeds and nuts are not allowed during induction, if you are constipated, you can add up to 2T ground flax seed, according to the official atkins.com blog:

"Studies indicate that two tablespoons per day of ground flax seed in your diet is the optimum amount, and that taking more than that offers no further benefit. Two tablespoons of GFS contains just 1g of net carbs. Add it into scrambled eggs, salads, soups, hamburger or sausage patties, protein shakes or whatever you can imagine working. It does add a light and pleasant nutty flavor in large enough doses."

Mind that you need to keep flax seed refrigerated or it will go rancid.

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Old 01-03-2013, 08:17 PM   #7
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I do have a harder time losing weight than other people I know ... only thing that seems to work for me is Atkins at or near Induction-level carbs, along with 5-6 days a week at the gym.

Other people talk of losing fat just from exercise or just from Atkins, but I have to do both to get results.

I'm only on Day 3 of a truly clean induction (I eased into low-carb starting the day after Xmas by stopping all the carby treats, and worked my way toward an Induction food list). So far I have not seen a weight drop, but it may be too early to expect that. I don't think I'm in ketosis yet because I'm still eating a lot of food. My energy level is improving already though...
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Old 01-03-2013, 10:01 PM   #8
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This is a classic YMMV. I have ALWAYS eaten whatever I wanted if it was low carb and got results. I would use Dreamfields and low carb tortillas, all the cheese I wanted, nuts, seeds, etc. from day 1 and it never bothered me. I know for some it's an issue, but this is just my anecdotal evidence. If you are struggling and really want something from the OWL list, I say go for it and see what happens. Climbing the carb ladder to OWL foods a little early is better than getting frustrated and quitting the diet completely, right?
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