The Dukan Diet

The Dukan Diet has recently gained popularity in the United States and Britain after reports that Jennifer Lopez and Kate Middleton used it to shave or keep off extra pounds. The diet has been promoted as a simple, easy-to-follow plan that allows dieters to lose weight quickly.

Although the diet is new to Americans, millions of French people have been following it successfully for years. French doctor Pierre Dukan, who wrote the book The Dukan Diet, created the eating plan more than a decade ago to treat people who were struggling with obesity. The Dukan Diet is a high-protein, low-calorie plan that has four unique phases.

The Diet Plan


  1. Phase 1 - Attack phase
    In the first phase of the diet, dieters may eat unlimited amounts of 68 different lean proteins, including fish, soy, nonfat dairy, poultry, and eggs, along with 1.5 tablespoons of oat bran and 1.5 liters of water every day. The first phase lasts between two and seven days.
  2. Phase 2 - Cruise phase
    During this portion of the diet, you may continue to eat the lean proteins and may also select from 32 different non-starchy vegetables, such as broccoli and bell peppers. You should increase oat bran consumption to two tablespoons a day. During this phase, you can expect to lose one pound about every three days.
  3. Phase 3 - Consolidation
    During the third phase of the diet, dieters may continue to eat lean proteins and vegetables. You may also add one daily serving each of fruit, starchy foods, whole grain bread, and hard cheese. Continue eating two tablespoons of oat bran and drinking water every day.
  4. Phase 4 - Stabilization phase
    Dieters enter the fourth phase of the diet, once they have reached their goal weight. This final phase is for long-term weight maintenance and should be followed for life. During this phase, you may eat any foods you like. One day a week, you should eat according to the first phase of the diet. You should also eat three tablespoons of oat bran daily.

Each of these phases should be paired with 20 to 30 minutes of daily physical activity. The Dukan Diet also recommends taking a daily multivitamin.

Pros & Cons


During the first phase of the diet, most people lose a lot of weight quickly. According to the Dukan Diet book, you should lose between two and eight pounds over two to seven days. The diet is easy to follow and does not require weighing foods or counting calories.


The Dukan Diet points out that when beginning the diet, many people experience symptoms such as bad breath, tiredness, insomnia, and nausea as a result of eliminating carbohydrates. Because the first stage of the diet does not include high-fiber foods, you may also experience constipation.


For many people, the Dukan Diet delivers the quick, easy weight loss they seek. However, many doctors and nutritionists are concerned with the lack of nutritional balance the diet provides, especially in the first phase. If you like a diet with strict rules, and if you move quickly from the first phase to the less restrictive second phase, the Dukan Diet can be a simple and effective way to lose weight.