Low-carb Diet

What is a low-carbohydrate diet? A beginner's guide to low-carbohydrate dieting for weight reduction and health.

A low-carbohydrate diet, for example, Keto or the Atkins Diet, encourages you to eat foods that are high in protein, any type of meat or fatty food, targeting those dreaded hunger cravings and allowing you to feel fuller.

Mistakes and Myths

Low-carbohydrate Dieting Mistakes and Myths

A popular dietary myth when starting a low-carbohydrate diet is that it is okay to eat large amounts of cheese, processed meats, sausages, and burgers.

The truth is that all these types of foods, while high in protein, are also loaded with saturated fats and should be avoided by anyone seeking to lose weight or develop healthy eating habits.

What to Eat

A Healthy Low-carbohydrate Diet, What to Eat

Of course, there are also healthy protein options available to those who would like to reduce their carbohydrate intake.

♥ Healthy proteins to include in a low-carbohydrate diet would be lean meats, eggs, fish, and low-fat or non-fat dairy products, as well as green vegetables such as broccoli, spinach, or asparagus.

How to Start

How to Start a Low-carbohydrate Diet

When choosing to follow a low-carbohydrate diet plan, your carbohydrates (sugars, starches, breads) need to be replaced with fats and proteins.

♥ On average you will need to get 60 to 70 percent of your daily intake from fat.

♥ Carbohydrates will make up less than ten percent of your daily consumption. These are actual numbers from a popular low-carbohydrateohydrate meal plan.

Best Foods

Best Low-carbohydrate Diet Foods

Due to these stringent restrictions and some basic nutrition common sense, I strongly advocate including food sources that are high in fiber, like fruits, vegetables, and even low glycemic carbohydrates (complex carbs).

Most updated or new commercial diets with a higher intake of protein are now including these options into their recommended plans.

♥ Also, as mentioned above, your protein selections should consist mainly of healthier fats, and you should avoid or use foods sparingly that are high in saturated fat or sodium.

The Guide

Beginner's Low-carbohydrate Diet Guide

Ok, so you decided to lose some weight, or a lot of weight depending on your situation. You choose a plan, dive right in and what happens?

You feel hungry all the time. This is a common issue when your body is in a calorie deficit.

You may think that choosing a low-carbohydrate diet, like Atkins, will free you from the dreaded calorie counting.

Low-carbohydrate dieters are led to believe that they don't need to count their calories to have success, because the foods they are eating are helping them to feel full for longer periods.

Calories Are King

The Way to Low-carbohydrate, Calories

Make no mistake, calories are still king.

Many do lose weight on this diet in the initial stages, but that can be short-lived due to water loss and not tracking calories.

♥ Additionally, it can be unhealthy if you are making the wrong food choices.

♥ Much of the weight loss can be attributed to water weight.

♥ When you resume your normal diet, as many people do, the weight comes right back.

The best course of action for anyone seeking to lose weight or make-over their eating habits is to select healthy food choices, control portions, determine optimum caloric intake, count calories, and introduce physical exercise to their lifestyle.

Stay committed and you will see results.

That's a scientific fact regardless of what menu you follow, Keto or otherwise.

Sample Plan

Easy-to-follow Low-carbohydrate Diet Plan Sample

Simple Low-carbohydrate diet menu and recipes.

Day 1
♥ Breakfast
Scrambled eggs, orange, toast and two slices of turkey bacon.
Low-carbohydrate diet recipe.
Number of Servings, 1.
Ingredients:
2 eggs with peppers and onions.
2 slices of turkey bacon.
1 orange.
1 slice whole grain toast.
♥ Snack: Apple slices with two tablespoons of natural peanut butter.
♥ Lunch
Crust-free zucchini quiche.
Low-carbohydrate diet recipe.
Directions:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
In a large cast iron skillet, heat oil. Add onion and garlic; sauté until tender. Add zucchini and sauté for 5 additional minutes until tender.
In a large bowl, whisk eggs and cream until blended.
Stir in zucchini and onion, and add parsley, oregano, green chilies, cheese and black pepper. Mix until well blended.
Spoon back into a greased cast iron skillet; bake for about 40 mins. or until the egg is set. Let sit for 10 mins. before serving.
Ingredients:
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil.
1/2 cup red onion, minced.
1 clove garlic, minced.
2 pounds zucchini slices.
4 large eggs.
1 cup heavy cream.
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped.
2 teaspoons dried oregano.
4 ounces diced chilies.
2 cups Monterey Jack cheese, grated.
Freshly ground black pepper to taste.
♥ Snack: Eight ounces Greek yogurt with walnuts.
♥ Dinner: California burgers and sweet potatoes.
California burgers.
Low-carbohydrate diet recipe.
Directions:
Sauté onion in 2 tablespoons butter; in a large bowl combine ground beef, sautéed onion and black pepper.
Form into four patties. Stuff each patty with 1 tablespoon, put the feta into the center and press the beef around it.
Grill patties or pan fry if preferred.
Number of Servings, 4.
Ingredients:
2 pounds ground sirloin, or ground turkey, if preferred.
1/2 cup onion diced.
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste.
4 tablespoons of feta cheese.
Day 2
♥ Breakfast
Rainbow frittata.
Low-carbohydrate diet recipe.
Number of Servings, 1.
Ingredients:
Made with eggs, onions, green pepper, red pepper, yellow pepper, diced jalapeno.
♥ Snack: Hummus with veggie slices.
♥ Lunch
Black bean salad.
Low-carbohydrate diet recipe.
Directions:
Made with black beans and toasted almonds on a bed of baby arugula with crumbled feta cheese, all tossed with a honey-jalapeno-lime dressing.
To make dressing, 1 tablespoon honey, 1 small diced jalapeno, and 2 teaspoons lime juice; blend well with 1 teaspoon olive oil.
Dressing ingredients:
1 tablespoon honey.
1 small diced jalapeno.
2 teaspoons of lime juice.

 

Balsamic green beans with slivered almonds.
Low-carbohydrate diet recipe.
Directions:
Sauteé green beans in olive oil 3 min.
Remove from heat and combine with vinegar and oil.
Top with almond slivers.
Ingredients:
1 cup green beans.
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar.
2 tablespoons olive oil, additional 2 tablespoons to sauté.
1 tablespoon almond slivers.
♥ Snack: Whey protein shake.
♥ Dinner: Peppered chicken tenderloins, quinoa and herb tomatoes with mozzarella and fresh basil.
Tortilla salad.
Low-carbohydrate diet recipe.
Directions:
Mix beans, sunflower seeds, cauliflower, and most of the dressing in a large bowl. Toss well, and add the feta, radish, and chips. Toss gently. Add avocado and more dressing if desired.
Number of Servings, 4.
Ingredients:
3 cups of cooked beans, warm.
1/3 cup toasted sunflower seeds.
2 cups chopped cauliflower, steamed and drained.
2 or 3 big handfuls of tortilla chips.
1/4 cup crumbled feta.
1 small watermelon radish, thinly sliced.
1/2 avocado, sliced.
1/4 cup of your favorite vinaigrette.
Day 3
♥ Breakfast
Herb cream cheese scrambled eggs.
Low-carbohydrate diet recipe.
Place cream cheese and herbs in a medium bowl; mash together until the herbs are dispersed equally. Put in the green onions, chives (reserving a pinch for garnish) and mash until well incorporated. Set aside.
In a skillet, melt butter with medium heat.
Add eggs; let them set a bit and use a spatula to fold them over. Let them set a bit again, and repeat.
Remove from heat, add 2 tablespoons of cream cheese to the skillet and stir a bit to work the cream cheese into the eggs.
Sprinkle in the rest of the chives, salt and pepper to your preference, and serve with toast on the side, if desired.
Ingredients:
8 ounces nonfat cream cheese, softened.
4 tablespoons chopped herbs, using equal parts of thyme, tarragon, and oregano.
6 green onions, chopped.
1/3 cup chives, chopped.
Sea salt and ground pepper, to taste.
1 tablespoon unsalted butter.
3 large eggs, whisked.
♥ Snack
Cheese sticks.
Low-carbohydrate diet recipe.
Directions:
Preheat the oven to 375degrees.
Process Fiber One cereal to a breadcrumb consistency in a food processor or blender.
Place crumbs in a plastic container that has a lid. Season the crumbs with salt, pepper, and Italian seasonings, as desired; set aside.
Cut the cheese stick into two pieces. Put sticks in a bowl with the egg substitute and thoroughly coat the sticks. Transfer sticks to the crumbs, cover the container with the lid, and shake to coat the sticks with the crumbs.
Carefully return the sticks to the egg substitute to coat again and the crumbs to coat again.
Put sticks on a baking sheet greased with olive oil; turn to coat with oil on all sides.
Bake for 10 minutes; serve with tomato sauce if desired.

Number of Servings, 1.

Dressing ingredients:
1 piece of light string cheese.
1/2 cup crushed Fiber One cereal (Panko bread crumbs can be substituted).
1/4 cup egg substitute.
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning, to taste.
Salt and pepper, to taste.
Tomato sauce, optional.
♥ Lunch: Cheese quesadilla.
Low-carbohydrate wrap - cheese quesadilla.
Low-carbohydrate diet recipe.
Directions:
Take wrap and lightly butter.
Place butter side down in a skillet.
Add the shredded cheese evenly, leaving about 1/4 inch at edge.
When cheese is mostly melted, fold the quesadilla in half by folding.
Cook on both sides until browned and crispy.
Cut wedges in and enjoy with sour cream and salsa.
Dressing ingredients:
Low-carbohydrate and low-fat wraps.
1/3 cup Mexican cheese, shredded.
1 tablespoon sour cream.
2 tablespoons salsa.
1/2 teaspoon butter.
♥ Snack: Cottage cheese & a piece of fruit.
♥ Dinner
Maryland shrimp salad.
Low-carbohydrate diet recipe.
Directions:
Mix all ingredients and chill. Add on a leaf of Boston lettuce or on low-carbohydrate whole grain thin bread to make a sandwich.
Ingredients:
1/4 cup pre-cooked shrimp.
1 tablespoon light.
1/4 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning.
2 tablespoons lemon juice.
2 tablespoons celery, diced.
Day 4
♥ Breakfast
Scrambled eggs, orange, toast and two slices of turkey bacon.
Low-carbohydrate diet recipe.
Number of Servings, 1.
Ingredients:
2 eggs with peppers and onions.
2 slices of turkey bacon.
1 orange.
1 slice whole grain toast.
♥ Snack
Avocado smoothie.
Low-carbohydrate diet recipe.
Directions:
Place all ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth. Serve immediately.
Number of Servings, 1.
Ingredients:
1 ripe avocado, peeled and pitted.
1/4 cup skim milk.
3/4 cup ice cubes.
1 tablespoon honey.
♥ Lunch: Grilled chicken breast, sauteed summer squash, zucchini and peach.
♥ Snack: Eight ounces low-fat yogurt and 1/4 cup walnuts.
♥ Dinner: Grilled flank steak, tomato, basil and mozzarella salad ingredients and steamed broccoli.
♥ Snack
One cup homemade trail mix.
Low-carbohydrate diet recipe.
Directions:
Combine all ingredients and store in an airtight container.
Ingredients:
1 cup almonds.
1 cup of walnuts.
1 cup apricot seeds.
2 tablespoons chia seeds.
1/2 cup dried apples.
1/2 cup dried apricots.
1/3 cup dark chocolate chips.

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