Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Chronic Pain and the Atkins Diet: By Christine

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Chronic Pain and the Atkins Diet

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Dr. Art Hister, from CKNW radio, is my self-appointed health guru. One of the reasons I proclaim this is because he constantly urges listeners to counter whatever he is presenting. As well, he doesn’t jump onto medical bandwagons, preferring to critically filter all incoming claims.

Imagine my surprise when Dr. Hister had a pro-Atkins speaker, Jay Workman, on the air with no callers to challenge the Atkin’s diet. In contrast, numerous Atkin’s testimonials were called or emailed in.

For those not in the know, it has been 10 years since Dr. Robert Atkins re-introduced his 1970's low carb diet program (known in the 70's as Dr. Atkins Diet Revolution). The book, now known as Dr. Atkin’s New Diet Revolution has flooded the market, producing what can only be termed "low carb mania".

Aforementioned Jay Workman works with British Columbia’s First Nations Health Program and was on CKNW to explain that the Atkin’s “diet” has been a diet naturally followed by the Inuit First Nations prior to any European contact. He also noted that rheumatoid arthritis and diabetes were conditions not noticeable amongst the Inuit.

For those still Atkins unaware, the diet urges a low carbohydrate diet - no white anything (sugar, pasta, rice, etc.) and good carbs are those vegetables grown above the ground rather than below (such as potatoes). As well, protein and fat consumption are encouraged.

The medical community has decried the Atkins diet as being unhealthy and not heart-friendly, but Workman insists it is a relevant and suitable diet for those in chronic pain. As well, the Australian Medical Journal released a report encouraging people with rheumatoid arthritis to give the diet a try (under physician guidance).

For those who are Atkin’s rebounders (tried diet, and failed) Workman compares the diet to quitting smoking and urges those interested to keep on trying.

Sounds like there’s nothing to lose - except weight and pain - in giving this regimen a try.

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