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Low carbohydrates diet

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As the name suggest, “low carbohydrate diet” entails reducing your daily consumption of carbohydrate with the aim of losing weight. There are various versions of this diet depending on how much pounds you need to lose and how much low calories you can sustain. Accordingly, your diet will be customized by your nutritionist to achieve the desired results.


How does it work?

Your intake of calories is drastically reduced with consumption of meagre amounts of carbohydrates. As per diet guidelines, you need to limit carbohydrate consumption somewhere between 50 to 150 grams. As per nutritionists, the diet works better when combined with low fat and high protein foods. With elimination of sugar, flour products, and other carb loaded foods, you lose weight quickly.

Foods to eat while being on low carbohydrate diet

The focus will be shifted towards protein rich food and low fat food. However, remember not to cut off carbohydrate completely from your menu; you just need to tone it down. 

  • Fish: Opt for fresh and wild water fish like salmon, tuna, trout, halibut, haddock and many more. They are enriched with protein and omega 3 fats.
  • Meat: Lean cut of beef, chicken and turkey should be ideal
  • Eggs and dairy: You can eat eggs. Look for pastured eggs enriched with vitamins and omega 3 fats. Also include low fat cheese, yogurt and milk
  • Vegetables and fruits: All green and coloured vegetables like carrot, beans, green peas, spinach, broccoli, kale, celery, etc. should be there on your plate. Coming to fruits, eat blueberries, oranges, grapefruits and apples. You can consume sprouts.
  • Nuts and seeds: You can eat nuts and seeds considering some amount of carbohydrates are required. Choose from flaxseeds, sunflower seeds, almonds, walnuts, cashews, etc.
  • Grains and cereals: Non gluten grains like oats, rice, and quinoa might be allowed
  • Cooking: Your nutritionist will let you know which oil you should opt for cooking. It could be olive oil, coconut oil or cod –fish oil

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Foods to avoid while being on low carbohydrate diet

Prepare a list of foods that contain large amounts of carbohydrates. You can refer to the list before planning your menu for the day. The foods that you need to avoid are: 

  • Sugary foods and drinks: Anything that contains sugar should be avoided. It includes sweetened fruit juices, fizzy drinks, ice creams, candies, cakes, cookies, chocolates, etc. Artificial sweeteners are also no for you.
  • Trans fat- Hydrogenated vegetable oils, ghee, etc. are No. You need to be careful about choosing your foods. Sunflower seeds or oil, safflower, canola, soya bean are not permitted
  • Processed foods containing high amount of carbohydrates; they could be frozen meals, fries, fast foods, etc. are also restricted
  • Fruits and vegetables: Starchy vegetables like pumpkin, sweet potatoes, potatoes, corn and fruits like cherries, dates, raisins, bananas may or may not be allowed.
  • Grains and cereals: Gluten rich foods like wheat, barley, spelt and its products like bread, pasta are eliminated as they contain high amounts of carbohydrates.


Pros and cons of low carbohydrate diet

  • Certainly you lose weight when with reduction in carbohydrates
  • This diet can be customized to improve your heart health
  • The negative side is, you might experience fatigue, dizziness, nausea, etc.
  • Some people end up eating wrong foods, which only induces reverse effects

Written by: healthplus24.com team
Date last updated: July 03, 2014