Low Carb Meal Plan FAQs
- What is a low-carb diet?
A low-carb diet is a diet that replaces sugar and starchy foods such as pasta, white potatoes, and refined grains with lean proteins, healthy fats and high-fiber fruits and vegetables. The lifestyle promotes eating whole, natural foods and limits processed foods.
When following a low-carb diet, you count daily net carbs, which is determined by taking the total grams of carbohydrates in a food and subtracting out the grams of fiber. Depending on your weight loss goals, you’ll need anywhere from 30 to 50 grams of net carbohydrates per day. Before starting a low-carb diet, you should talk to your doctor to determine the range that’s best for you.
- Do low-carb diets work for weight loss?
Carbohydrate restriction promotes weight loss by reducing blood sugar and insulin levels causing the body to burn stored fat cells. Plus, the diet’s emphasis on lean proteins, healthy fats and fiber-rich produce helps suppress appetite and curbs food cravings to prevent overeating.
- What foods should I eat/should I avoid on a low-carb diet?
Foods to eat: meat, poultry, fish, eggs, non-starchy vegetables, low-glycemic fruits, nuts and seeds, full-fat dairy, oils and fats.
Foods to avoid: artificial sweeteners, baked goods, breads, cereals, candy, fruit juices, low-fat dairy, pastas, white potatoes, snack foods, soft drinks, sugar, and most packaged convenience foods.
- Are there health benefits to a low-carb diet?
More and more evidence supports the idea that a low-carb diet may help reduce inflammation by managing weight, insulin resistance, cholesterol levels, and type 2 diabetes. Low-carb diet proponents say eating a carbohydrate-controlled diet could help fight aging and improve overall health.
- What is a ketogenic diet and how does it differ from a normal low-carb diet?
While both diets are effective for weight loss, the main difference between a ketogenic and a low-carb diet is in their carbohydrate restrictions. A ketogenic diet is defined by eating no more than 50 grams of net carbohydrates to help the body produce ketones as its alternative fuel source for glucose. On the other hand, a low-carb diet is defined by eating somewhere in between 50 to 150 net grams of carbohydrates allowing the body to use glucose as its primary fuel source. A ketogenic diet is also much higher in fat and because of its strict low-carb restrictions may be more difficult to adhere to for the long-term.
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