south beach diet

The Diet Solution

South Beach Diet Allowed Food

South Beach Diet allowed food lists are scarce in the first phase and enriches during the following stages of the diet. The point is to start with almost no carbs and start reintroducing them gradually in the second phase.

Phase 1

The first phase of the diet is the strictest, being the phase at the end of which radical changes should happen in the plan of weight (expected 8-13 lbs loss), in the way of eating and in the blood chemistry. It is very important because a good beginning is essential for success.

South Beach Diet allowed food — Phase 1

Meat, poultry, fish, dry beans, eggs and nuts group — lean cuts

  • Beef: eye of round, top round, sirloin (including ground), tenderloin, top loin, top round.
  • Poultry (skinless): cornish hen, turkey bacon(2 slices/day), turkey/chicken breast.
  • Seafood: all types of fish and shellfish.
  • Pork: boiled ham, canadian bacon, tenderloin.
  • Veal: chop, leg, cutlet, top round.
  • Lamb: center cut, chop, loin
  • Lunchmeat: low-fat only or fat-free.
  • Nuts: (to be served only once a day) almonds — 15 (dry roasted recommended), Brazil nuts — 4, cashews — 15 (dry roasted recommended), flax seeds — 3 tablespoons, pecans — 15 (dry roasted recommended), macadamia — 8 (dry roasted recommended), peanut butter, natural — 2 tablespoons, peanuts — 20 small (may use dry roasted or boiled), pine nuts (pignolia) — 1 ounce, pistachios — 30 (dry roasted recommended), walnuts — 15 (dry roasted recommended), seeds: pine nuts (pignolia), pumpkin, sesame, sunflower (1 ounce).
  • Eggs: egg whites and egg substitute as desired. The use of whole eggs is not limited at less than seven eggs a week unless otherwise directed by your doctor.

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Milk, yogurt and cheese group: low-fat, fat-free.

  • Cheese: American, Cheddar, cottage cheese, cream cheese substitute — dairy-free, Feta, Mozzarella, Parmesan, Provolone, Ricotta, string
  • Milk, Soy milk, sugarfree
  • Soy: Tofu (soft, low-fat or light), soy bacon (2 slices/day), soy burger (low-fat), soy hot dogs (low-fat), soy sausage patty, soy crumbles, soy nuts(1/4 cup for a snack).

Vegetables and fruit group

  • Vegetables — fresh, frozen or canned (no sugar added): artichokes, asparagus, beans and legumes (black beans, butter beans, Garbanzo, kidney, lentils, Lima, Pigeon peas, soy beans, split Peas), broccoli, cauliflower, celery, cucumbers, eggplant, greens(collard, turnip, kale), lettuce, mushrooms, onions, parsley, peppers, pickles, radishes, scallions, sea vegetables, snow peas, spinach, sprouts, squash, tomatoes, water chestnuts, zucchini.
  • Fruit — none

Bread, cereal, rice, and pasta group


Fats, oils and sweets group

Fats and oils

For daily consumption the monounsaturated oils are recommended: Canola and olive oil.

Other oil choices — polyunsaturated or blended monounsaturated: corn, enova, grapeseed, peanut, safflower, sesame, soybean, sunflower.

Other fat choices: Avocado — 1/3 whole = 1 TBS oil, Guacamole, Mayonnaise — regular or low fat, Olives (green or ripe)


(limit to 75 calories per day): chocolate powder (no added sugar), cocoa powder (baking type), hard candy sugarfree, sugar substitute (all sugar-free unless otherwise specified), fudgsicles, sugar-free, gelatin, sugar-free, gum, sugar-free popsicles, sugar-free.

Spices, seasoning

  • All spices that contain no added sugar: Broth, Horseradish sauce, Pepper (black, cayenne, red, white), spray lemon juice, lime juice, almond, vanilla.
  • Toppings and sauces to be used sparingly (always check labels for added sugar)
  • Hot sauce, salsa, soy sauce, steak sauce, vinegar, worcestershire sauce, whipped topping (light)

South Beach Diet food to avoid — Phase 1:

  • grain products: all starchy food — bread, all types, croutons,cereal, oatmeal, rice, pasta, pastry and baked goods, all types
  • meat: all fatty cuts — beef — brisket, liver, rib steaks, fatty cuts, poultry — chicken, wings and legs, duck, goose, poultry products, processed, pork — honey-baked ham, veal — breast
  • dairy products: Brie, Edam, regular, nonreduced fat, yoghurt — cup-style and frozen, ice cream, milk, soy milk
  • vegetables: beets, carrots, corn, potatoes white, tomato (limit to one whole or 10 cherry per meal), potatoes sweet, yams
  • fruit: to be avoided
  • no alcohol of any kind allowed, including beer and wine
  • no regular ketchup or cocktail sauce
  • caffeine-containing beverages limited to 1 serving (8 ounces) per day

Phase 2

Foods to reintroduce into your diet

All foods will be reintroduced gradually, 1 serving/a day at first and all of them the same day reaching in the end 3 servings/a day.

Milk, yogurt and cheese group

  • also low-fat, fat-free products — milk, yogurt.

Vegetables and fruit group

  • Vegetable group — green peas, barley, pinto beans, black-eyed peas, sweet potato, small potato, barley, carrots
  • Fruit group — apples, apricots (dried, fresh), banana (small to medium), blueberries, cantaloupe, cherries, grapefruit, grapes, kiwi, mangos, oranges, peaches, pears, plums, strawberries (3/4 cup)

Bread, cereal, rice, and pasta group

Beginning with phase 2, one serving is allowed daily at first, gradually increases to 2 or 3 total servings for the day when you reach phase 3.

Examples of one serving of recommended foods in this group:

  • Bagel, whole-grain, 1/2 small
  • Bread, 1 slice (multigrain, oat and bran, rye, whole-wheat)
  • Cereal: 1/2 cup cooked
  • Kasha, 1/2 cup cooked
  • Oatmeal (regular, not instant), 1/2 cup
  • Muesli (toasted), 1/2 cup
  • All Bran, 1 1/4 cups
  • Shredded Wheat 'N Bran, 1 cup
  • Cereal Couscous, 1/2 cup
  • Crackers: only whole grain, no hydrogenated oils/trans fats), that contain a good amount of fiber and no sugar (serving sizes are on the product label)
  • Muffins, bran, 1 (sugar-free, no raisins)
  • Pasta, whole-wheat only, 1/2 cup cooked
  • Pita, 1 small (stone-ground, whole-wheat)
  • Popcorn, 1/2 cup (popped)
  • Quinoa, cooked, 1/2 cup
  • Rice, 1/2 cup cooked (brown rice or wild rice only)
  • Wheat germ, 3 tablespoons

Fats, oils and sweets group

Chocolate — bittersweet, semi-sweet pudding, fat free.


Red wine.

Foods to avoid — Phase 2:

Bread, cereal, rice, and pasta group

Bagel, refined wheat, bread — refined wheat, white cornflakes, matzo, pasta, white flour, rice cakes, white rice.

Vegetable and fruit group

  • Vegetables: potatoes — baked white, instant — beets, carrots, corn, potatoes
  • Fruit: bananas, canned fruit, juice packed, fruit juice, pineapple, raisins, watermelon

Fats, oils, and sweets

Saturated fats, hydrogenated fats, honey, ice cream, jam, cookies.

Phase 3

Phase 3 allows a great variety of foods from all food groups and needs not a foodlist. The diet has now become a way of life focused on foods with low and medium GI, complex carbs, unsaturated fats and limiting foods with high GI, foods containing simple carbs and saturated or hydrogenated fat. Should you overindulge a little, should any extra-weight be back, you will return to Phase 1 for a week or two.

By this time your body will have improved its response to food, your blood chemistry will have changed, your cardiovascular system will have also improved. Whether you started the diet to lose some weight or for health reasons, when reaching this stage you will see that you have achieved both.

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