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Used South Beach diet, past 12 months

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For sample adults in 2007 who had ever used the South Beach diet for two weeks or more for health reasons (DITSBEV) and for sample children in 2007, DITSBYR reports whether the person had used the South Beach diet for two weeks or more for health reasons in the past 12 months.

Special diets--including the South Beach, Pritikin, Ornish, Atkins, macrobiotic, vegetarian, and Zone diets--were one of many alternative health treatment modalities included in the 2002 and 2007 Alternative Health Supplements. The South Beach diet was only included in the survey as a special diet in 2007, while the other special diets were included in both years. For the full list of alternative health treatments covered in the NHIS, and for general background information about the Alternative Health Supplements, see ACUYR.

In 2007, if sample adults gave a positive response to DITSBYR (or, in either 2002 or 2007, to the comparable variables DITATKINYR, DITMACYR, DITORNYR, DITPRITYR, DITVEGYR, DITZONYR, which cover use of other special diets in the past 12 months), they were asked a series of follow-up questions (see DITATKINYR).

In addition, both sample children (2007 only) and sample adults (both 2002 and 2007) who had used any of the seven specified special diets in the past 12 months were asked whether the diets were used to treat a specific medical condition and, if so, what that condition was (see DITTREAT).


The 2007 Field Representative's Manual says that the South Beach diet:

distinguishes between "good" and "bad" carbohydrates and fats. "Good" carbohydrates are those that are digested relatively slowly, and "bad" fats include saturated and trans fats. Although the program does not require one to count calories or limit portions, dieters are encouraged to eat whole grain foods and an abundant amount of vegetables.

In 2007, field representatives were advised to "feel free to offer [this definition] even if the respondent has not requested [it]."


DITSBYR is only available for 2007, and is fully comparable between sample adults and sample children.


  • 2007: Sample adults age 18+ who have ever used the South Beach diet and sample children under 18.


  • 2007