What is a low carb diet and how do you healthfully accomplish a low carb diet? A low carb diet is easier to do than most people realize and you don't have to eliminate any foods. A low carb diet is one of two of the healthiest diets for a lifetime of health and avoidance of chronic health conditions.
What is a Low Carb Diet?
What is a low carb diet? Is a low carb diet healthy for you? How do you accomplish a low carb diet? My belief is a low carb diet is the way to go to prevent weight gain or lose weight, prevent heart disease and diabetes and conquer many other health concerns. Stay tuned for answers as to why I believe that.
We all want the best, don’t we? Best schools for our kids, best vacations, best flat screen TV’s. So, there must be a best diet, right? Maybe not. How about two best diets? And they are both on the extreme ends of the dietary spectrum. Plenty of studies of cultures around the world show that a low fat vegetarian diet as well as a low carb diet high in “good” fats are not only heart healthy but overall, just a healthier way to eat. So, be vegetarian if you would like to do that…as long as you don’t gain weight or see your blood pressure or cholesterol rise. They would be signs the low fat diet is not working for you.
My favorite …and a diet I have followed for 35 years is a low carb diet. Let’s define carbs first, it may surprise you. Any food that is not an animal product, fat, oil, nut or butter contains carbohydrates which break down into sugar. That’s right sugar, the same as the sugar in a Snickers bar! It’s called glucose. Whether it’s bread, potatoes, rice, fruit, broccoli or lettuce… yes, there’s fiber, vitamins, minerals… but, they all still break down into glucose. Some foods contain more carbs and some less. That means some foods contain more sugar and some less.
What is a low carb diet? A low carb diet is not about eliminating any foods, it’s about reducing the total amount of carbs in your daily diet. I am talking about Dr. Atkin’s, The Zone Diet, The South Beach Diet, Suzanne Sommers, or a basic Mediterranean diet where the incidence of diabetes and heart disease is much lower than in the US. You don’t need to be as drastic as Dr. Atkins or completely follow the advice of any of these books, just cut back on your carbs.
So, is a low carb diet healthy for you? There has never been a study done that has proven that a high fat, low carb diet caused heart disease. Only a high fat, high carb diet causes heart disease. All studies about fats that have been linked to heart disease in the past did not take into account the amount of carbs eaten by the participants because scientists have never been able to wrap their brain around thinking that apples, whole wheat breads, potatoes or those cute little Bugs Bunny carrots could in any way be linked to heart disease. Well, if you eat too many carbs they can.
A high carb diet contributes to heart disease because sugar creates an inflammatory response within the body and arteries, leading to heart disease, possible diabetes and other inflammatory health conditions.
So, what does a low carb diet look like? You can follow the diet plans and recipes from any of the low carb books, but it’s really very easy. Breakfast is bacon and eggs, almond or peanut butter on rice cakes or leftovers from last night’s dinner. Lunches and dinners are a salad with an olive oil dressing, steamed or sauteed vegetables in lots of butter or olive oil and meat, chicken, fish or other animal protein. Can you live on that? As strict as that sounds, discipline like this allows you to enjoy some days with more carb intake if you wish, but don’t give yourself too much wiggle room or else you defeat the purpose of a low carb diet. And let’s not be fat phobic. Fat is not a problem unless eaten with too many carbohydrates.
Enjoy! Don’t use artificial sweeteners like aspartame, aka NutraSweet or those little blue packs called Equal, no Sucralose, aka Splenda, no saccharin and no Acesulfame K…where the K stands for potassium. All of these artificial sweeteners and especially aspartame have the unintended consequence of increasing your desire for carbohydrates. And that’s not to mention the neuro-toxicity of these products, that means they’re poison to your brain.
Low carb is they way to go. Don’t fear fats and let’s prevent many chronic health conditions.