Importance of the right diet cannot be denied in your weight loss journey and that is where in our search for the “right diet”, low carb diet ranks quite high on the list.
Over the years, weight watchers have paid special emphasis on low carb diet and thus, in this article, we are going to tell you what carbohydrates are, the role they play in your weight and general health and the foods you can include in your low carb diet for Indians.
What are Carbohydrates?
Carbohydrates are one of the nutrients found in all foods that come from plants. Chemically, they are classified into monosaccharide, disaccharides and polysaccharides.
Simply, they can be classified into simple carbs and complex carbs. We have to know that if we want to follow the low carb diet, we have to avoid simple carbs derived from corn syrups, sugars, cane sugars and honey.
Complex carbs are supposed to be healthy according to low carb diet and are allowed while following the diet.
Foods to be Included in Your Low Carb Diet
Soaked Almonds, nuts and seeds like roasted soybean, roasted Bengal gram dal, roasted flax seeds, roasted sunflower seeds, rajma or kidney beans, mung daal, paneer or cottage cheese, dahi or yogurt, red chanaa, sprouts, milk, soybean, egg white, chicken and fish are the main foods that should be included in your low carb diet.
You should also include sweet potato, quinoa, beans, lentils, peas, brown rice, wild rice, potato, corn on the cob, rolled oatmeal, whole grain pasta, couscous, multi-grain bread, whole wheat pita bread, , whole-grain bagel, whole-wheat tortilla, kale, spinach, broccoli, peppers (sweet), carrots, cauliflower, cabbage, winter squash, raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, watermelon, orange, mango, peaches, pineapple and figs.
5 Great Tips for Following the Low Carb Diet
1. Include Complex Carbs in Your Diet
Following the low carb diet entails avoiding simple carbs and including complex carbs in your meals.
Include whole grains like brown rice, oats, whole wheat, barley, whole wheat pasta and whole wheat breads on your plate. These are complex carbs that will enhance your weight loss process .
2. Increase Your Protein Intake
Consumption of proteins in your low carb diet helps you in attaining satisfaction. They also stabilize the blood sugar levels and control your food cravings.
You can include low fat dairy products like milk, yogurt and cottage cheese in your low carb diet. Also eat leans meats, beans and legumes .
3. Make Fiber a Large Part of Your Low Carb Diet
Have at least 2-3 portions of raw salads and fruits everyday. This will ensure that you are consuming the required amount of fiber in your diet.
Also green leafy vegetables should be included on the list. They are power packs of minerals and help in the control of blood pressure and blood sugar levels .
Since they are high in fiber, they also play a role in weight loss. Besides these, you could also add flax seeds, fenugreek or methi seeds, sprouts and whole grains to your meals.
4. Steer Clear of Fats
When you are following the low carb diet, you have to avoid all kinds of food with Trans fats. This includes fries, pakodas, chips and other deep fried foods .
Try including monosaturated fats like olive oil, peanut oil and mustard seed oil since they limit your carb intake by giving you a feeling of dietary satisfaction.
5. Do Regular Exercises
It is a known fact that any diet will prove effective only if you supplement it with regular exercise. Regular exercise helps in maintaining a healthy weight along with maintaining the sugar level of your body.
It also gives you energy and agility, which keeps you active, which in turn, decreases your body weight even more.
4 Common Low-Carb Diet Mistakes
1. Treating Carbs as Enemies
Even while following our low carb diet, it is mandatory to remember that carbs are not are enemies. There are various nutritious tasty carbs that should be included in your low carb diet, though in moderation.
These include fruits, whole grains, vegetables and beans amongst others. Carbs are energy providers for our body, which we use for performing our day to day functions. So, we just cannot do without them.
2. Going Overboard on Unhealthy Fats
Many a times, it so happens that we run towards foods with high trans or saturated fat like pork, beef, eggs, butter, cheese in the garb of being on a low carb diet. This is a sin!
According to the American Heart Association, too much “bad” cholesterol (LDL) in your body is a cause of various types of diseases in humans.
According to a study conducted by Harvard School of Public Health, it was found that a low-carb diet high in animal protein like dairy and meat is linked to higher mortality rate than a low-carb diet high on plant protein like vegetables, lentils, etc.
3. Too Much Protein Intake
Being on a high protein diet while following a low carb diet is one of the key points to remember and follow. But as they, an excess of anything is bad. Likewise, too much protein intake is also bad for your health .
4. Gorging on Too Many Processed Low Carb Foods
Consuming too much of processes low carb foods like bacon, snack bars, etc just because you are on a low carb diet is one of the worst things you could do to your health .
These foods are often loaded with excess sodium, trans fats, and other additives and preservatives, which if consumed in excessive quantity, prove as silent killers for your body.
So, people, low carb diets are definitely effective in reducing weight but it does it in a healthy way only if you take care of the minor aspects we just discussed.
Do not take your low carb diet to extreme levels by drastically reducing your carb intake or eating large amounts of unhealthy fats. In general, focus on limiting your intake of processed and refined carbs, and eating more high-quality carbs from whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, especially the seasonal ones.
In this way, you will gradually end up losing weight along with your body receives all the nutrients that it takes for a healthy body to survive and function successfully.
So, this was our take on low carb diet for weight loss. To know more about weight loss and nutrition, talk to our Truweight Nutritionist today! The first consultation is on us.