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Will Low-Carb Diets Ultimately Make Us Fat?

Many low-carb diets emphasize eating only "good" carbs from fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, but supermarkets are being flooded with low-carb junk food.

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Plus, Atkins products are not meant to replace whole foods, says Matt Spolar, vice president of product technology. "Idealistically, yes, people should only focus on healthy fruits and vegetables, whole foods, and healthy meats," he says. "But the American consumers go up and down the aisles of the supermarket and buy other products. We want to provide them with an alternative."

When buying low-carb goods, Dorfman suggests looking at the food's total calorie content, total fat, fiber content (to avoid frequent bathroom visits), and any substitutes such as soy and sweeteners.

It's also important to keep in mind that there is no marketplace standard for low-carb products. The FDA is working on definitions for the terms "low carb," "reduced carb," and "carb-free." Until the agency comes up with a ruling, it's up to the consumer to decipher the meaning of carb-conscious edibles.

Published Aug. 10, 2004.


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