Dukan Diet: What You Need to Know

The Ideal Candidate

Who can expect to benefit the most from the Dukan Diet? The evidence suggests that it's rare to find a dieter disciplined enough to manage the balance that the diet requires to maintain a healthy lifestyle. However, it's not unheard of.

Marshall Brain, the founder of HowStuffWorks.com, is a loyal and satisfied participant of the diet. Dukan's formula, Brain told MSNBC, allowed him to drop more than 50 pounds over a six-month period. "For the first time, I feel like I have the tools I need to control my weight," said Brain [source: Raymond].

Brain's comments echo that of the program's founder. "We doctors have weighed up the risks and the benefits. I consider that the real risk is an excess of weight and obesity," Dukan told the French newspaper, Le Parisien. "Every day there are people who die from this and I am trying to fight against it" [source: Willsher].

However, the very fact that the European and American medical communities are so divided about the Dukan Diet should serve a significant red flag. "High-protein diets lack critical nutrients," Dr. Karol Watson of UCLA's Program in Preventive Cardiology told WebMD. "Restricting carbohydrates means you restrict plant-based foods, which are rich in phytochemicals and antioxidants" [source: Hatfield].

The bottom line? Make sure you go into the program with your eyes wide open, and opt for a diet plan that offers not only weight loss, but also sound long-term solutions to your nutritional needs and eating habits.

Related Articles


  • Cappon, Colleen. "Dukan Diet: Newest Fad or Weight-Loss Answer?" FoxNews. April 29, 2011 (July 29, 2011) http://www.foxnews.com/health/2011/03/18/dukan-diet-newest-fad-weight-loss-answer/
  • Hatfield, Heather. "Pros and Cons of High-Protein Diets." WebMD. (July 29, 2011) http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/pros-cons-of-high-protein-diets
  • Holland, Catherine. "Dr. Oz. The Dukan Diet and 10 things you need to do to stay healthy." azfamily.com. May 2, 2011 (July 28, 2011) http://www.azfamily.com/news/health/Dr-Oz-----The-Dukan-Diet-and-10-things-you-need-to-do-to-stay-healthy-121104659.html
  • Katz, Neil. "Dukan Diet: Bad breath, constipation, and sex appeal?" Health Pop/CBS News. April 19, 2011 (July 29, 2011) http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-504763_162-20055278-10391704.html
  • Raymond, Joan. "French diet gets royal treatment, but experts scoff." MSNBC. April 8, 2011 (July 30, 2011) http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/42417101/ns/health-diet_and_nutrition/t/french-diet-gets-royal-treatment-experts-scoff/
  • Sciolino, Elaine. "Warmed-Over Atkins? Don't Tell the French." The New York Times. March 16, 2011 (July 29, 2011) http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/17/fashion/17skin.html?_r=3
  • Silvera, Coree. "Are Fad Diets Worth the Risk." WebMD. April 22, 2011 (July 13, 2011) http://blogs.webmd.com/whats-new/2011/04/are-fad-diets-worth-the-risk.html
  • WebMD. "The Atkins Diet." Feb. 6, 2009 (July 30, 2011) http://www.webmd.com/diet/atkins-diet-what-it-is
  • Willsher, Kim. "Dukan diet divides French doctors over effect on health." The Guardian. May 30, 2011 (July 29, 2011) http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/may/30/dukan-diet-france-health-affect
  • Wurtman, Judith. "Will the Dukan Diet Turn Kate Into a Bridezilla?" The Huffington Post. March 28, 2011. (July 28, 2011) http://www.huffingtonpost.com/judith-j-wurtman-phd/will-the-dukan-diet-turn-_b_840977.html
  • Zelman, Kathleen. "'The Dukan Diet' Review." WebMD. June 20, 2010 (July28, 2011) http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/dukan-diet-review