Ten Low Carb Diet Tips for Weight Loss
I’m going to give you ten low carb diet tips for weight loss. I thought it would also be helpful to give you extra information about low carb diets, because there’s a lot of confusion general health and low carb diets for losing weight. The more information you have before you start a healthy eating plan, the better your weight loss success will be! You might also be interested in this article with more information about Side Effects Of A Low Carb Diet after you’ve read this article. I’ve explained both the good and bad side effects and some myths to be aware of!
Why A Low Carb Diet For Weight Loss?
- Using a low carb diet to lose weight is an easy diet plan to follow.
- You don’t have to count or weigh food if you know which foods are high in carbs.
- Eating out is easy on low carb diet.
- A low carb diet is flexible. You can create your own low carb menu.
- Low carb diets are cheap if you avoid the hype!
- There’s a wide variety of healthy foods included in a low carb lifestyle.
- You can have sweet foods if you use healthy sweeteners. Here’s a guide to healthy sweeteners.
- A low carb diet is based on unprocessed foods. Unprocessed foods provide more nutrition.
- Most foods found in nature (before processing) are naturally low carb!
- Low carb diets provide balanced nutrition. Avoid obsessing over carbohydrates in vegetables!
Health Benefits of Low Carb Diet
Following a low carb diet for the long term will provide may health benefits including:
- Lower blood sugars and decrease risk of diabetes.
- Decreased hunger! Your appetite will decrease because your insulin levels will be stable.
- Decrease inflammation in the body. High Sugar diets cause inflammation in many people.
- Stabilise and balance hormones. A low sugar diet can help with menopause and PMS!
- Control cholesterol and lipids. New research suggests that high LDL cholesterol may be caused from high carb diets!
- Easy life long weight management.
- Increased energy levels and less fatigue.
Low Carb Diet Side Effects
Speaking from experience the only side effect to the low carb diet I’m talking about, is a headache for the first two days. This only happens when people transition from a diet very high in sugar to a low carb diet. It’s actually not the diet causing the headache, its the body adjusting from sugar addiction. The struggle is real!
•Constipation or diarrhea
Note: In my experience the sides effects listed by the mayo clinic more likely with a keto diet not a normal low carb diet.
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The Difference Between a Low Carb Diet and Keto Diet?
A keto diet is a much stricter version of a low carb diet. The keto diet is a very very low carb diet, which forces the body to produce ketones. Our body uses ketones for energy in the bases of glucose. Not to be confused with ketoacidosis, which is a serious medical emergency! Under normal circumstances following a keto diet will not produce ketoacidosis!
After following a keto diet for a week or so (it’s a different time period for everybody) you’re body will have used up most of the stored glycogen from the liver and muscles. Glycogen is the bodies stored sugar. At this point the body is in ketosis. Then the body relies on body fat stores for energy, which usually causes fast weight loss. The keto diet is more difficult to follow for long because it’s a strict carbohydrate restriction. Most keto diets suggest 20g of carbohydrates per day. The average western diet has between 225-325grams of carbohydrate per day.
How Many Carbs In A Low Carb Diet?
An average low carb diet might have between 50g and 100g of carbs per day. This depends if follow a low carb diet menu plan or if you just eat low carb foods when you’re hungry. As a qualified nutritionist, I strongly suggest the later!
I don’t believe there’s any need to count or weigh food when you follow a low carb lifestyle. As long as you focus on eating unprocessed, whole foods. If you eat whole natural foods, you’ll automatically eat a lower carb diet. So you understand what I mean by unprocessed, I’m talking about foods that grow in nature and haven’t been touched by manufacturers. Therefore bread, pasta, fruit juice, “whole wheat” anything, are all processed foods! If you’d like Healthy Recipes which are Low Carb and Unprocessed see this post.
What Are Low Carb Diet Foods?
You might be wondering what to eat on a low carb diet?
If you follow a whole food diet based on fresh vegetables, poultry, seafoods, meats, unsweetened dairy products, nuts and seeds, you’ll be eating a low carb diet 99% of the time.
Don’t be fooled by food manufacturers and their claims to health! Use mother nature as your guide. If you do, you’ll save money, get healthy and lose weight easily!
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The lowest carb foods are those from animals or pure fats. High protein low carb foods include: eggs, meats, fish and poultry. Pure fats such as coconut oil or olive oil are healthy fats, but shouldn’t be consumed in high amounts until you reach your goal weight. Most vegetables are also low in carbohydrates because most of the carbs in vegetables come from fibre. Human beings can’t digest fibre, so it’s not counted as carbs in the diet.
Low carb fruits include: all types of berries. Some melons such as watermelon and cantaloupe. Avocado is extremely low in carbohydrates and should be included as one of your healthy fats! If you’re craving sugar, you’re better to have a piece of fresh whole fruit rather than snack on junk food. Even low carb junk food can be filled with chemicals to prolong their shelf life.
Low carb vegetables: include all green vegetables! Its easier to make an exclude list as most vegetables are low in carbohydrates. Unfortunately of all the vegetables, potato is the highest in carbohydrates, followed by pumpkin. However, compared to processed foods, even these foods are low in carbs. Personally, I don’t cut out any vegetables because they all provide fibre and good nutrition. In the broad scheme of things, a potato is better than a chocolate bar when you’re craving carbs.
Foods to avoid on a low carb diet: Anything made with grains! This includes rice, pasta, wheat products, and oats. Legumes are also very high in carbohydrates.
Anything which has been processed will most likely have carbohydrates added to it. This includes foods like fruit juices or dried fruits. These foods have been condensed to be almost pure sugar. Check the labels of processed meats and dairy products for added ingredients. Also be careful when choosing condiments like marinades and sauces. Most have added sugar and chemicals.
There are a million low carb recipes online. If you find yourself craving junk foods, look up a recipe for a low carb version. You’re sure to find one! If you’re willing to spend a little bit of time in the kitchen learning how to make low carb foods, you’ll be able to eat pancakes, wraps, donuts, chocolate…and anything else you can think of. Here’s a complete guide to using Natural Sweeteners For A Sugar Free Diet.
Ten Low Carb Diet Tips for Weight Loss
1. Don’t Eliminate Just Reduce
Some people mistake low carb for no carb. Don’t completely eliminate carbohydrates in your diet as this can cause fatigue and keto flu. Simply reduce your carbohydrate intake and replace the highest carb foods with proteins and fats instead. Start slowly over a couple of weeks so your body has time to adjust.
2. Learn Which Foods Are High Carbs
Do you know what foods consist of carbs? Educating yourself is an important step in any weight loss program. If you are going to reduce carbs then you need to know what foods to cut out. Most foods contain some carbohydrate but some contain a lot more carbs than others. For a full list refer here.
3. Learn How To Replace High Carb Foods
So what foods can you eat instead of high carb foods? Learn which foods are good alternative to the normal high carb options. Low carb options are everywhere! You’ll notice most low carb foods are also unprocessed foods. These are foods found in a natural state without too much food manufacturing. Meat, fish, poultry, dairy foods, vegetables, some fruits, nuts and seeds are a good place to start. You may be interested in this article about how to recipe hack for fast weight loss which you can also read. It goes beyond just following a low carb diet and focuses on how to reduce calories and fats by swapping out certain ingredients.
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4. Learn How to Read A Nutrition Label
Learning to read a nutrition labels is very important for long term health and weight loss. When you go to the supermarket how will you know what foods to purchase if you don’t know what’s in them?
5. Start an Exercise Program
If you want to lose weight and improve your health then you must also exercise. There are many health benefits to exercise and the best place to start is by walking on a daily basis. Then increase your speed and duration as time goes by. If however you want to burn more calories and lose weight faster, consider adding weight training to your routine.
6. Drink Water
Hydration is very important for weight loss. Aim for at least 2 litres (at least 1/2 gallon) per day, and you may even need more if you’re exercising.
Carbohydrates are digested to become simple sugar (carbohydrates become glucose) and glucose attracts water into the cell. So when you cut back on carbohydrates you also need to increase water intake. Carbohydrates also contain lot of fibre. So on a low carb diet you will eat less fibre, drinking more water to help your body’s digestive system to compensate.
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7. Take Supplements
Consider taking supplements if you need extra support. Supplements like multivitamins, fish oil, magnesium and Vitamin C can help your body transition to a low carb diet. You’ll also need additional fiber to keep your digestive system healthy. Simple fibre supplement are inexpensive and available in most grocery stores. Look for psyllium husk or chia seed powder which are both great to cook with as well! Try to eat plenty of vegetables, nuts and seeds to get as much fibre as possible. When taking fibre supplements be sure to drink lots of water!
8. Time Your Carbohydrates
The best times to eat carbohydrates is the morning before you exercise. This is because carbohydrates are an energy source and so if your working out in the mornings (which I recommend) you’ll be able to burn those carbohydrates off leaving your body with no choice but to burn fat afterwards. Be aware of how much carbohydrate you’re eating at one time. The more you eat, the higher your blood sugar spike will be and this inhibits fat burning.
9. Be Consistent
The most important thing with any weight loss diet is consistency. If you’re consistent in your low carb plan and your exercise regime, then the results will follow very quickly! If you’ve had trouble being consistent in the past, see how to rewire your brain for motivation to be healthy for lasting weight loss here. Staying consistent and changing for the long term is the hardest part of any health regime! Using willpower and self discipline only works for so long. When you focus on your mind and make changes within the functioning of the way you perceive your weight loss plan for the long term, the necessary changes you need to make can become possible for a much longer period of time. Changing your mind is the only way to remain consistent over the long term, and maintain the weight you lose on your low carb diet.
10. Commit To Long Term Weight Loss
A low carb diet is not a quick fix to a weight problem. You need to commit to a low carb diet long term to get the best results. Think of it as a lifestyle rather than a short term diet. On the upside, using a low carb diet is one of the easiest diets to follow for a prolonged period of time. The longer you follow your new low carb diet, the easier it becomes! The more tools and resources you have to use the easier it becomes, as well. Consider starting with Low carb recipe books to make the transition easier in the first couple of months. Once you’re in the groove of your healthy eating plan it will feel like second nature.
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