Review of Zone Diet by Barry Sears
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The Zone Diet
Author: Barry Sears. PhD

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Barry Sears' Zone Diet is designed to maintain your insulin levels within steady limits - "in the zone" - by eating a careful balance of carbohydrate, protein and fat, at each meal and snack. The Zone Diet is not a high protein diet, rather an adequate protein diet, in which (unlike the Atkins Diet) saturated fats are kept to a minimum.

Eating Guidelines

The Zone Diet recommends moderate quantities of low-fat protein (about 85g for women and about 115g per day for men). It is not a ketogenic diet as it contains enough carbohydrate to avoid the state of ketosis induced by other low-carb diets, like Dr Atkins' New Diet Revolution. In addition, it strongly recommends fruit and vegetables, which makes it a healthy diet to follow in the longer term.

Portion and serving sizes are restricted, with most daily menus containing between 1200-1500 calories.

Food Blocks to Keep You "in the Zone"

The diet divides food into blocks.

For example, one block of protein contains 7g of low-fat protein, like lean meat, skinless chicken, fish, egg whites or soy. Each protein block should be balanced with a carbohydrate block containing 9g of complex carbohydrate with vegetables and fruits preferred to bread and other starchy carbs because they are more nutritious and contain more vitamins, minerals and dietary fiber. For better blood sugar control each protein and carbohydrate block must be eaten with a 1.5g block of fat.

All meals and snacks are based on these exact proportions of one protein block + one carbohydrate block + one fat block.

The average woman will consume three blocks of each of these three nutrients at meal times, while a man will have four blocks.

The Zone Diet also encourages two snacks a day to maintain stable blood sugar and avoid hunger.

Dinner Plate Guidelines

As a rule of thumb, protein should occupy about one-third of the space on your plate, while vegetables should occupy the rest. Fat is usually added in cooking, or as a salad dressing or as nuts or olives sprinkled over the food.

The Zone Diet recommends regular exercise along with several nutritional supplements, like fish oil supplements, vitamin E, vitamin C and magnesium.

Some Zone Diet Recommended Foods

Foods that are recommended on the Zone Diet, include: - fruits and vegetables (fresh or frozen), oatmeal (whole grain), protein powder (eg soybean isolate), chicken, turkey, lean beef, fish, low-fat cottage cheese, soy food, nuts (eg almonds, cashews, macademia, pistachios), extra virgin olive oil, natural sweeteners - fructose or Stevia.

Zone Diet Issues

The strict proportions of nutrients (carbs, protein, fat) which Sears insists upon at each meal or snack, may reduce diet-compliance. Even so, many dietitians view the Zone Diet as one of the best and healthiest low carb eating plans.

Carbohydrates Definition
Carbohydrates Information
Complex Carbs Guide
Simple Carbs Guide
Starch/Starchy Carbohydrates
Sugars Carbohydrates
Carb Counting Guide
Facts About Carbohydrates
Diabetes, Carbs and Diet

Fiber in Diet
Dietary Fiber
Types of Fiber
Best Sources of Fiber
Benefits of Fiber
Daily Fiber Needs

Nutrition & Carbohydrate
Nutrition in Carbs
Minerals in Carbohydrates
Vitamins in Carbohydrates
Phytochemicals in Carbs

Carbs and Glycemic Index
Digestion of Carbs
Blood Glucose Levels
Glucose into Energy
What is Glycogen?
How is GI Measured?
What Affects Glycemic Value?
Glycemic Index Food Chart
Glycemic Index Food Pyramid
Glycemic Value of a Meal
GI Values in Carbohydrates
GI Value For Beans
GI Value For Bread
GI Value For Cereal
GI Value For Dairy Food
GI Value For Drinks
GI Value For Fruit
GI Value For Meat/Fish
GI Value For Nuts
GI Value For Snacks
GI Value For Starchy Carbs
GI Value For Sugar
GI Value For Vegetables
GI Value For Whole Grains

Carbohydrate in Foods
Atkins Diet Foods
Energy Bars
Flour/Baking Foods
Ice Cream
Milk, Cream,Yogurt

Carbs in Food cont/
Soy Food
Zone Diet Foods

Diet Recipes
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Carb-Controlled Diets
Atkins Diet
South Beach Diet
Zone Diet
Low Carb Dieting
Benefits of Low Carb Diets
Low Carb Diets Health Risks
Ketosis - High Ketones in Blood
Gluconeogenesis Guide
Free Low Carb Diet Advice
Low Carb Weight Loss Diet

Diabetes, Insulin, Obesity
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Hyperglycemia - High Blood Glucose
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Insulin and Obesity
Types of Insulin
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Insulin Resistance Syndrome provides general information about different types of carbohydrate, like monosaccharides, disaccharides, oligosaccharides, polysaccharides, as well as nutritional value of carbohydrates, carb-content of foods, plus details of GI values of all food groups, plus advice about diabetes, impaired glucose tolerance and insulin resistance. But no information is intended as a substitute for medical advice. Copyright 2003-2021.