Plant-Based Atkins Diet Better Than Animal-Based Atkins Diet
More and more evidence shows the consumption animal-based food leads to illness, while the consumption of a whole food plant-based diet or a diet consisting mostly of whole plant foods is supportive of health.
The Atkins diet and other low-carb diets focus on the consumption of animal protein and fat and the minimal consumption of carbohydrates to support weight loss. This diet does lead to weight loss and also severe illness.
Researchers at Harvard  analyzed the effects of low-carb diets on the health of 100,000 people and found the low-carb diets were associated with higher “all-cause” rates of death, cardiovascular death, and cancer death.
People on low-carb diets did lose weight, but were also prone to die earlier and suffer more from heart disease and cancer. It was believed this reason for this was the high consumption of protein and fat, and low consumption of carbohydrates.
Researchers wondered if the problem was with higher protein and fat consumption in general, or if the problem was specially with animal protein and fat and not plant protein and fat. They decided to re-analyze the data from the 100,000 person study to see if animal and plant sources of protein and fat had the same effect on health.
The researchers found that it was specifically the protein and fat from animal foods that increased mortality rates, and the rates of cardiovascular disease and cancer. An animal-based low-carb diet increased mortality and disease rates by 25% over a regular diet, and a plant-based low-carb diet actually decreased these rates by 20% compared to a regular diet.
 Fung TT, van Dam RM, Hankinson SE, Stampfer M, Willett WC, Hu FB. Low-carbohydrate diets and all-cause and cause-specific mortality: two cohort studies. Ann Intern Med. 2010 Sep 7;153(5):289-98.