Thie is the text of an e-mail I just sent to the link from the BBC 'Money Programme' website:
I have just watched your programme with much interest - I am an Atkins dieter.
It was very enjoyable, but I half-expected to hear that the diet would be debunked on a factual basis. True, there were lots of accusations - which I've heard MANY times before - but in reality it seemed just to be peddlers of carbohydrates bleating about the crisis in their markets.
As a committed free-marketeer I have some advice for potato and grain growers - switch to other things for at least part of your production, for example salads and some other vegetables which aren't saturated with carbs generally or sugar in particular (i.e. carrots). That's the 'business' bit, that should appeal to the food-producers' accountants.
I started the diet on 15 June 2003 when my weight was 216 lb - my height is 5' 7" and I am 51 years old. As at Sunday 2nd November I had lost almost 59 lb. I have about 14 lb left to reach my target.
Since about 2 weeks I moved from the 'Induction' phase to the 'Ongoing Weight Loss' stage. I expect to stay on this until mid-December when my target is to have about 7 or 8 lb left to lose. I will then move to 'Pre-maintenance' and plan to take until end-March to reach my target (i.e. over about 3 1/2 months).
I had my blood checked out about 8 weeks ago and all my cholesterol levels (HDL/LDL) are now 'normal' as, of course, is my blood pressure. I check my BP at home regularly using a home monitor I have had for years. I feel better now than I have for many years and have the great morale boost of having lost over 11 inches on my waist and 8 inches on my hips and appropriate amounts elsewhere.
The purchase of a new wardrobe, still continuing, is a very enjoyable experience - and as I live entirely without any kind of credit (I must be one of the few people who can genuinely say this!) I am entirely without guilt at my current spending spree. I use credit cards only as a convenience and the balances are settled automatically by direct debits or the equivalent (in certain other countries).
As one of those featured on the programme said, if hard evidence (not just scare stories by people with vested interests) is presented showing the diet to be dangerous in the long-term then I shall certainly study it very carefully before continuing with the diet. Meanwhile, I plan to continue eating according to Dr Atkins principles for the rest of my life. Personally I have not felt the need to indulge in any of the low-carb products becoming more widely available - I have no 'cravings' whatsoever. The only indulgence I plan is to have 1 (repeat 1) small roast potato on Christmas Day. I am perfectly happy with my new diet - for someone who has been a perpetual snacker all his life until now, that is pretty incredible - even to me.
Thanks again for a most interesting programme.