The foods allowed in this phase are starchy carbohydrates, seafood, lean beef/poultry/pork, fruits, dairy (yogurt, milk fat free), vegetables (barley, black-eyed peas, pinto beans, sweet potatoes, yams, onions, and carrots), sweet and chocolates which are semi-sweet and soy products.
Agatston believed that that hunger cycles in an individual are triggered by carbohydrate rich food which the body can digest quickly, creating a spike in blood. Such foods include the heavily refined sugars and grains that make up a large part of the typical Western diet. The South Beach Diet eliminates these carbohydrate sources in favor of relatively unprocessed foods such as vegetables, beans, and whole grains which are good sources of carbohydrates.
The South Beach Diet eliminates the trans-fats and discourages saturated fats. The foods which contain bad fats may not contribute to hunger cycle but they contribute to LDL cholesterol and heart diseases. Thus the South Beach Diet replaces these bad fats with foods rich in unsaturated fats and omega-3 fatty acids which contribute to HDL cholesterol and provide other health benefits.