Low carb diets include cutting out carbohydrates from your diet, or at least limiting them, and adding more proteins and fats. But even if you cut out grains, starchy vegetables and fruits, will it still help you lose weight, and even more importantly, will you be healthy and will the weight loss results last?
If you cut out all vegetables, fruits and grains, the answer is NO. Your body needs the nutrients it gets from those important foods to keep you healthy. In fact, if all you eat is protein and fat, you are more at risk of heart disease, cancer and other types of diseases. But there is a way you can follow low carb diets and still be healthy. Here’s how.
Eat whole grains instead of processed grains like white rice and white bread. Those are empty carbs, while whole grains can actually help you lose weight. Eat brown rice, for example, instead of bread or pasta.
Select green, leafy vegetables and broccoli. A leafy vegetable, like kale for example, paired with broccoli will give you some great nutritional value. While it’s best to eat a variety of vegetables, you can’t go wrong if you stick with green, leafy vegetables instead of cutting vegetables completely out of your diet.
Add fruit sparingly. Eat a few fruits from different color groups to get the best nutrition. For example, eat one strawberry, a piece of melon and a handful of blueberries. While this won’t add too many extra carbs, it will help you get the vitamins and minerals you need.
Eggs are a great way to add protein to your diet because they offer many of the same kind of nutrients as fruit and vegetables without the high carbs. For example, eggs give you omega-3s, vitamin A and many other supplements. If you are really trying to follow the advice of low carb diets, only eat the egg yolk.
If you cut out these foods from your diet just to lose weight quickly, you’re likely to put the weight right back on later. This is called a “yo-yo” diet. That’s because your body will be so nutrient-deficient during the diet that you’ll crave the foods and eat too much of them later. It’s better to cut out food that is bad for you completely, like junk food, and just slightly reduce your intake of food that is good for you, including grains, fruits and vegetables.
The worst thing you can eat while on low carb diets are sugary drinks, snack foods and desserts. Cut these out of your diet before you cut out whole grains, fruits or vegetables. Also, it is important to realize that low carb diets will result in a decrease of energy. That’s because your body needs carbohydrates to produce energy. If you find you don’t have enough energy to keep up with your regular lifestyle, perhaps you cut out too many carbs. Add them back in until you feel prepared to meet your daily responsibilities, or consider changing your diet.