The Zone is a popular diet designed by Doctor Barry Sears. It was originally produced to reduce heart disease through its effect on inflammation but also showed great weight loss results in the patients put on the diet that it became popular in wider circles and is now considered a weight loss diet.
The basic premise of the Zone Diet is to consume 40% of you daily calories in the form of carbohydrates, 30% as protein and 30% as fat. Generally, people are encouraged to eat 3 meals and 2 snacks on the Zone Diet eating plan.
The author claims that the calorie distribution helps control the amount of insulin produced in the pancreas, which he asserts is the major cause of obesity and weight gain in modern Western society. By controlling the amount of carbohydrates in the diet and there limiting insulin production the Zone Diet helps with weight loss.
The reason the Zone diet is controversial is people argue that it is high protein, which it really isn’t, and that it is high fat, which it certainly is compared to either protocols. The benefits of the Zone come from the encouragement of eating healthy fats on a regular basis and limiting high glycaemic carbohydrates.
I really like the Zone template as a good starting point for eating ratios. For some people, particularly if you’re very over weight, the 40% carbs is too much but all in all it is a solid model.