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Chris and Others: T-Dawg vs. Atkins?

I’m am very familiar with the “T-Dawg Diet”, but know little about the Atkins Diet. Someone told me that they were similar.

Chris S. and others: anyone know what the biggest differences between the two are?



If my understanding is correct the “Atkins diet” is a keto diet that doesn’t really focus on macronutrient ratio’s other than less than 30g carbs/day. It does’nt set ratios of how much protein vs. fat needs to be consumed and doesn’t distinguish between saturated fats from unsaturated fat. He also doesn’t address omega-3 fat intake. He believes lots of sausage, bacon, processed meats, ect., are just fine and pose no health risks. Basically it’s a fat loss diet for the average joe who’s not concerned with lbm composition. The T-dawg diet, as you already know, is a keto style diet taylored to the weight training athlete. That’s a pretty basic comparison, but I think it probably sums it up in a nut shell.

That sounds about right to me. I think Tampa-Terry is doing T-Dawg with 30g carbs/day though, you might wanna check with him and see how that’s working out. I’m starting T-Dawg 2 on Monday myself actually :slight_smile:

There is a good basic overview in Ladies Home Journal. Don?t laugh, it is my wife?s magazine. I picked it up to read an article called ?diet tips from the pros your haven?t heard.? Also my skin has never been as silky smooth since their continuing articles? uh, never mind.

Apparently Atkins wants people to eat 20 ?Net Carbs? per day. This means you don?t count carbohydrates that have a minimal impact on blood sugar levels. After about two weeks that number goes up to 25, and you add 5 to your daily intake each week until you have a few days with no weight loss. Then you drop by 5 and stay their until you get within 5-10 pounds of your target weight.

After that you go to ?Pre-Maintenance? and then ?Lifetime Maintenance.? Where these ?Net Carbs? are increased, until weight is stabilized, and you stay there. As far as omega 3?s, he mentions them very (very) briefly. I also heard him discuss his diet on the radio and made a big mention of the importance of omega 3?s. I was in and out of my car often, so I heard it off and on.

The Atkins information was a two page rip out ad with the purpose of getting people to buy their new ?Atkins Advantage? products, like 0 impact carb pancake syrup. (Not quite sure what you are supposed to put it on though.) I don?t know if this differs from the original Atkins diet or not. I could see the idea being modified to support his new product line.

Atkins is a much stricter keto diet in terms of carb intake…also Atkins is basically designed for the sedentary person. Without some type of periodic carb up, you would lose muscle and eventually be constantly fatigued unless you have extremely poor insulin sensitivity. I have seen though that his recent plan eventually adds a fair amount of carbs back into the diet after a while. Atkins stresses a deep level of ketosis, but I believe that this is just to give the dieter a psychological advantage. Think about how paranoid you first-time keto dieters (myself included) got when those ketosticks showed no purple whatsoever. Atkins doesn’t really emphasize a high level of good fats, but uses his recommended intake of saturated fats (bacon, cheese, cream etc.) in my opinion as a key selling point to get people onto the diet. He’s also got some pretty hokey supplement recommendations (anyone ever seen his Dieter’s Advantage product LOL?), but then again it ties in to selling his product.

The basic idea is good: watch your carbs (especially the bad ones), but for someone like you or me, T-Dawg and its variants are a much better alternative.

You know, Max, I hadn’t thought of it that way, but I guess you’re right about the fact that I’m doing T-Dawg, but with lower (<30g) carbs. The other differences are that I emphasize Omega 3s like flaxseed oil and fish oil over saturated fat. And my carb refeeds (every 4 days) have a specific number attached to them, 200g.

Honestly, I think T-Dawg is the better plan for most people. The higher level of carbs allow for more variety and greater quality of life. It’s not necessary to cut carbs as low as I do to get magnificent results. I am just extremely carb INsensitive.

Atkins first of all is targeted for obese middle aged woman. So you will not see any information on post workout nutrition.

The FISRT TWO WEEKS are a max of 20g CHO/day. They are to come from green leafy vegetables. After the first two weeks you can either continue with the 20g CHO/day if you still feel that you have a large amount of weith to lose or you can move onto the next phase which starts adding I believe 5g CHO/week back into your diet. You do this until your weight loss stalls. I believe they call that your Carb threshold. There are two other phases after this for when you get to your goal weight and the maintenance phase. You are allowed to eat fruits and vegetables throughout the phases. He does recommend only certain types of each.

Also he does believe in adding Omega 3’s into the diet.

Thanks, guys!

I don’t mean to sound TOO cynical…but I sort of figured that something that had gained as much “mass appeal” as the Atkins diet had to have some major holes in it… and that the “T-Dawg” would be the way to go for the musclehead.

Question though (because I still don’t know much about the Atkins Program). It seems like you guys are pointing out what seems to me a wierd irony when you compare the two…in that the “T-Dawg” is healthier while being somewhat less restrictive! Am I reading that right?

More advice and comments are welcome…needless to say I get a LOT of questions about my thoughts on the Atkins Program…


Mufasa, the Atkins approach may not be appropriate for athletes and us body-composition manipulators, but it’s an incredible step forward healthwise (for the general population) when compared to high-carb/low-fat diets.

Robert Atkins has a couple of books out, one original, one updated. For the price ($7 paperback, I think), it’s worth the read. His first book was more inspirational/persuasive/educational.

I think everyone has covered most of what I was going to say, but I’ll add:

1) While I’m no fan of the Atkins diet, especially for athletes and bodybuilders, it is sometimes unfairly attacked because people only look at the “induction” phase - the very strict first step of the diet. The rest of the diet makes better health sense after that first phase. Not perfect, but better.

2) It’s not a diet for those who want to look good naked, just drop weight. Obviously, I think my version of the low(er) carb diet is better for T-men and T-vixens. I also think Atkins is unrealistic in the long run.

3) Atkins says not to log food intake because you’ll get full anyway and can’t overeat on a high fat diet. He’s partially right, but obviously I suggest logging intake, at least at first.

4) The book is worth reading, as is Protein Power and The Zone Diet. You don’t have to agree with everything in the books to pick up a few good ideas.

5) Like most diets written for the general public, the exercise recommendations are laughable.

6) I wrote an article about the Atkins diet for “Mind and Muscle Power” magazine. I tried to find it so I could sent it to you, but it’s long gone. However, the summary was basically, “the diet is not as bad as many make it out to be, but it’s certainly not ideal for those who want to look both lean and muscular.”

I bumped this because of a couple of questions asked about the T-DAWG AND Atkins…

This thread should help…

They are not really similar other than the higher protein intake. Atkins sucks! Do not do it! High protein diet makes sense and can work but Atkins is going overboard.