The Dukan Diet is an eating method designed in France. It’s a protein-based diet. This eating plan is created by Pierre Dukan, a French doctor, who has been promoting the diet for more than 30 years. His diet gained a wider audience after he published his book, The Dukan Diet, in 2000. The book has sold over 7 million copies worldwide and it has been published in numerous countries and translated into 14 languages. The book was released in the UK in 2010, and in the US in 2011.1
Many diets can help you lose weight. However, 95% of individuals who diet gain the weight back…and even more when they return to the old eating habits.
Dr. Dukan claims that his diet plan can redesign your eating habits and help you permanently stabilize the weight.
This diet is a low carb, low fat, and high protein diet – a healthy eating plan based on vegetables and proteins – 100 foods altogether. And what is best, it is ” Eat as much as you like.” 2
Dukan Diet 4 Phases
The Dukan Diet doesn’t guarantee great results in record time – but, it promises that if you follow the directions you will be able to attain the True Weight, your realistic weight that you can achieve and maintain for the rest of your life.
- The ATTACK Phase (to start the weight loss)
The first phase of the Dukan diet, called Attack phase, creates a kick-start to the diet. This phase involves pure protein. During the Attack phase, you can consume 68 high-protein foods which produce noticeable and immediate weight loss.
- The CRUISE Phase (to attain your True Weight)
The second phase, known as Cruise phase, can take you to your True Weight. It contains 32 vegetables. You will progressively but steadily lose weight by alternating Protein + Veggies days and Pure Protein days. The average length of this stage is based on a schedule of three days for every pound you want to lose.
- The CONSOLIDATION Phase (designed to avoid the rebound effect)
During this stage, you are at your most vulnerable, as your body tends to quickly regain weight. This phase is created to prevent the rebound effect by progressively returning previously forbidden foods in limited amounts and allowing for 2 “celebration” meals weekly.
This stage is strict and follows an exact timeline – five days per each pound lost in the third phase. It’s significant to follow one other crucial step as soon as the Consolidation Phase has started – a protein day on Thursday.
- The STABILIZATION Phase (definitely vital, for life)
The last phase, called Stabilization phase, is probably the most significant one! Is the rest of your life thing – you have developed a pattern to follow and learned how to eat healthier in the previous stages.
Furthermore, to keep your new slim body, you should follow these 3 simple but strict rules:
- 3 tablespoons of oat bran a day;
- Walk 20 minutes every day and choose to take the stairs whenever possible, and
- Thursday is a pure protein day! (i.e. Attack Phase menu)
Most individuals will regain the weight they lost once they attain their goal weight. The Dukan Diet eating plan creates a complete platform which goes beyond just the weight loss stages. 3
|+ 32 vegetables
|+ fruit, starchy foods, whole grain bread, and cheese
|include foods from all food groups
|Expected weight loss
|between 2 to 8 pounds during the phase
|2 lbs per week on average
|between 2 to 7 days
|about 3 days per pound
|about 5 days per pound lost in Cruise
|Amount of oat bran (Tablespoon/day)
|Physical activity (duration/day)
See also: Burn Belly Fat All Day Long! Simple Include These Foods in Your Breakfast
Does It Allow for Dietary Restrictions or Preferences?
Vegan or vegetarian: This diet is based on eating a lot of lean meat, fish, poultry, eggs, shellfish, and fat-free dairy. Tofu, tempeh, and seitan are the vegetable protein choices available – lentils, nuts, and beans are not on the list of allowed foods in Dukan diet. On Thursday, when all you eat is protein (no veggies or fruits allowed), things can get boring fast if you do not eat meat.
Low-fat diet: If you’re following a low-fat regimen or have a heart condition which requires eating ultra-low-fat food, Dukan diet may fit like a glove, because of the allowed foods –mainly fruit, veggies, and protein – are lean, low-fat, or no-fat.
Gluten-free: The earlier stages of the diet might work for a gluten-free diet, however, as the rules relax, it is not strictly gluten-free. In case you’re trying to avoid gluten completely – always read food labels carefully. 4
Does It Work?
The Attack phase will likely result in significant weight loss because of the few carbohydrates allowed on the eating plan. But you may gain some of the weight back when you go back to eating normally after attaining your goal weight.
Studies found high-protein diets are really effective for losing weight, but scientists still don’t know what the long-term effects are for your weight and health 5 6 . And there is no any evidence that having 1 all-protein day, accompanied by exercise, is enough to maintain the weight loss.
Is It Good for Certain Conditions?
Even though the Dukan diet can lead to weight loss that can actually help with some health conditions, the risk may outweigh the benefits.
If you’re on medications for diabetes, you will likely need to change the dose, since the first 2 phases are very low in carbs. If you experience renal disease, you may get more protein than your kidneys could handle. In case you have cardiovascular disease, you will be missing out on heart-healthy fiber.
Due to the restrictive nature of this diet, it is important to consult with your doctor first if you experience certain health condition.
Dukan diet focuses on lean protein sources. Protein can make you feel fuller longer, thus, helping you lose weight.
If you want to lose some little amount of weight fast, then this eating plan may work for you. If you are over 50 or have a health condition (like diabetes), or need to lose a lot of weight, you need to talk to your GP first.