December 14, 2004
Herald Sun (Melbourne, Australia)
by Fay Burstin
THE Atkins diet bubble has finally burst, with thousands of slimmers abandoning the controversial low-carb eating plan.
Sales of the diet book, written by New York GP Robert Atkins, who was reportedly obese when he died last year, have plummeted worldwide.
British book sources said sales were only one tenth of what they were a year ago when 110,000 copies were bought in a single week. And the number of Atkins followers in the US has dropped from 9 per cent to less than 4 per cent.
In Australia, sales of Dr Atkins New Diet Revolution have fallen from a high of 900 copies a week in 2002 to just 100 copies sold last week, according to retail book monitoring service Nielsen BookScan.
Dymocks Melbourne reported a similarly dramatic fall from dozens of copies selling a week last December to barely a single copy a month.
“For a while there, Atkins was flavour of the month in diet books. It was one of the best sellers ever, but it’s gone really quiet in the past three months,” Dymocks Melbourne owner Dino Traverso said yesterday.
British experts say the popularity of the diet was damaged by reports it may increase the risk of heart disease and cancer.
But Australian nutritionist Catherine Saxelby said the fad had probably just run its course.