(oops - this should have been a DQ post - too late!)
I am aware of the urban legend link, and the story in USA today. I am also aware of the efforts the Atkins empire went to to spin the story in the media. His condition regardless of weight, was just what the studies warned could happen. including the fact that he had suffered a heart attack and had clogged arteries - what a coincidence. And there were reports from those who knew him, including the mayor, that he was fat at the time of his fall. From 195 to 258 in eight days surely is a lot of fluid buildup. Are we to assume that he received at least 63 pounds of fluids over an 8 day period?
I admire much of the work Atkins did - he was a true pioneer. His diet simply became too simplified and in the hands of the marketers the message became eat all the fat and junk food you want and just ditch the carbs. That is simply dangerous and irresponsible. His own group eventually admitted as much when they came out with the revised Atkins diet in response to all the studies and concerns.
People who strictly follow the diet to tend to lose weight and do keep it off as long as they stay on it - but at the expense of a very real risk of long term damage. A reason many who follow the Atkins diet for very long begin to suffer headaches, muscle cramps and diarrhea is consistent with a carbohydrate deficiency. They simply do not get enough carbohydrate to supply the tissues with blood sugar. That is why the organs start to malfunction.
Those who lost some pounds and became enamored with the diet can tout it all they want, it does not change the facts.
Instead of debate the diet, why not simply modify it a bit to take out some of the fat and junk foods allowed and add some of the essential carbs? Or just agree to disagree, I did not intend to start a debate here, but was just trying to give what is my best opinion and advice.
Besides, Newport, you are one of my favorite good folks here and one of the last ones I would wish to get in a fuss with.