Off course if you want the full details, you can buy the Dr Dukan's book (I did), but believe me this post makes a lighter and quicker read! and after all, this is really all you need to get you started! Good Luck!
The Dukan Diet consists of 4 phases, it is not by any means a lose weight quick scheme.You are here for a while! The good news is that the weight loss is quick enough to keep you motivated, the diet does not starve you, in fact you eat a lot and best of all you do not feel deprived, even though you are giving up a whole bunch of stuff that you probably like. The trick here is to find substitutions for this things, I certainly have!
Phase I: The Attack Phase
This is the shortest and most strict phase of the diet, but it is the one that gives you the quickest weight loss. It will last between 3 to 10 days depending on how much weight you want to lose. I did it for 10 days as I need to lose 55 pounds - I lost 8.5 pounds during those 10 days!! I needed that quick weight lost for my motivation. I normally will give up diets after a week of suffering because I will see myself losing a pound or two.
So what do you do? you eat only lean proteins during the whole time - as much as you like!!!. No carbohydrates (sugar, starchy foods, fruits, etc.) and very low fat. There is a list of about 70 foods that you can eat but it can all be summarize as: Lean beef, chicken, lean pork, eggs, fat free yogurt, fish, seafood, fat free dairy and soy. You should also drink 2L of water a day and 1.5 tablespoons of Oat Bran! Read my post on what I did to survive it!
You need to commit to doing 20 minutes of exercise a day - walking is absolutely fine and recommended.
Phase II: The Cruise Phase
This is the main phase to lose weight. You will be on this phase until you reach your goal weight. How long? well that depends on the amount of weight to lose and how good you are! I have been on this for about 9.5 weeks and have lost a little over 20 pounds. This is considering I have been doing the diet during the Holidays, so my weight has been stable for a couple of weeks as I cheated a little! I could not do Christmas and New Years without Carbs! Sorry you all....
Anyhow, what do you do in this stage? You eat one day of only proteins (like in the attack phase) and one day of proteins and vegetables and you increase your intake of Oat Bran to 2 tablespoons a day- That is it! so we call it a PP day (Protein only) and a PV day (Protein -Vegetable). Now, not all vegetables are created equal! You are not allowed any starchy vegetables, so mainly potatoes, beans and peas are out! Carrots and beets should be eaten with care too.
I have discovered that there are certain foods and products that have helped me go through this phase - click here to see what they are.
Now you need to up your exercise to 30 minutes a day - I am doing 30 minutes most days and about 1 hour during weekends. I have discovered Zumba and absolutely love it!
Phase III: Stabilization Phase
I am not in this phase yet, but the theory is to get your body used to your new weight and avoid having to go back to your old weight in a short period of time, which is what your body will try to do. In order to do that you need to stabilize your weight. You will be on this phase for 5 days for every pound you lost on the two phases before. So in my case, I would like to lose 55 pounds so I will have to be on this phase for 275 days!!! Yes!! almost a year! this is why I say earlier that we are here for a while!!
During this phase, everyday will be a PV day and in addition you can also eat the following:
- 3 tablespoons of Oat Bran a day
- 2 pieces of whole wheat bread a day
- 1 piece of fruit (excludes bananas and grapes) a day
- 2 servings of potatoes, rice or pasta a week
- 1 celebration meal a week in where you can eat whatever you like
- 1 day a week you go back to a PP day
After you have done half of your time on this phase you can have 2 celebration meals a week. Remember to keep exercising!
Phase IV: Consolidation Phase
This is the phase in where you go back to eat whatever you like. The only thing you need to do here is to do one PP day a week for the rest of your live!! and keep up with the exercise.