What are the health benefits of a low carb diet?

Low carb eating results in weight loss, which can be very dramatic and very quick. Eating low carb eliminates those pesky out of control cravings, stabilizes blood sugar and consequently the appetite, and research has shown that reducing carbohydrate consumption and replacing them with protein and healthy fats results in reducing overall calorie consumption naturally and without starvation.

Needless to say, the side effects of this are quite impressive as obesity is linked to heart disease, type 2 diabetes, stroke, cancer, reduced quality of life, belly fat, joint problems, autoimmune disease, and premature death.

Reduction in visceral fat – Research has shown that a low carb diet can help to reduce levels of visceral fat specifically rather than the superficial subcutaneous fat.

Stabilizes blood sugars to possibly prevent and manage type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Since low carb, eating eliminates insulin triggers, (sugars and starches) it is the diet of choice for those with prediabetes or those already diagnosed.

While a lot of research into low carb eating as it pertains to treating or preventing disease is far from conclusive, a low carb diet certainly results in weight loss and is especially important in regards to metabolic and insulin-related diseases, such as type 2 diabetes and other metabolic syndrome conditions.

Maintain healthy blood pressure

May lower risks for heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and stroke

The Ketogenic diet is used to treat several types of cancer and to slow the growth of tumors

 

The Ketogenic diet is also used to treat traumatic brain injury, epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease and polycystic ovary syndrome

Eating less sugar and lowering insulin levels can help improve acne

Many people report simply feeling better, including feeling less bloated, and having more energy than when they a high carb diet.

There are plenty of great choices, recipes, and combinations of low carb meals and foods.

·         Turkey, chicken, red meat, ham, sausage, bacon, organ meat and exotic fowl

·         Fish and seafood

·         Eggs

·         All non-starchy vegetables, including, leafy greens, onions, tomatoes, peppers, mushrooms, olives, etc.

·         Butter, heavy cream, full fat sour cream and salad dressings (check labels for carb count)

·         Whole full fat unprocessed cheeses, including, cheddar gouda, mozzarella, parmesan and blue cheese in moderation

·         Almonds, walnuts, peanuts, nut butters, sunflower seeds, flaxseeds, pumpkin seeds, and chia seeds in moderation

·         Extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil and avocado oil

·         Avocados (whole or guacamole made from fresh whole avocados)

·         Salt, herbs and spices

·         No carb sauces like some hot sauce brands, and soy sauce, check labels.

·         Berries in moderation

·         Drinks: water, unsweetened tea, unsweetened coffee, club soda, no-calorie flavored seltzers, diet soda (be cautious as artificial sweeteners can affect low carb weight loss), herbal tea without added barley or fruit sugars.

     So as you can see a low carb lifestyle has many benefits, so why not give it a try. Sign up for our free 1 Minute Weight Loss newsletter and start reaping the benefits of good health.


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Avoiding Chronic Inflammation With A High Fat And Protein Diet

Inflammation occurs naturally as part of the body’s immune response. It jumpstarts the healing process by flooding an injury with healing antigens. Antigens and fluids may also become concentrated within the body’s tissues to carry away irritants or foreign bodies (bacteria and viruses). The presence of inflammation does not always indicate the presence of infection.

 

When inflammation becomes chronic, persistent, and ongoing, it becomes a concern. Chronic Inflammation In one area of the body can trigger the inflammation in other parts of the body. For example, a sinus infection can lead to an ear infection while the immune system is compromised which may eventually affect the lungs.

 

In some cases, a low-grade irritant trapped in the tissues, can cause ongoing inflammation and lead to chronic inflammation. Irritable bowel syndrome is a good example; the disease causes inflammation in the intestines when certain foods passing through the digestive tract cause irritation.

 

This ongoing irritation if not addressed causes chronic inflammation. Chronic Inflammation has been linked to the development of heart disease, cancer and the development of other systemic diseases.

 

The Connection Of High Fat And High Protein Diets To Inflammation

 

A high fat and high protein diet leaves the body vulnerable to chronic inflammation. Protein provides the body with the building blocks of healthy tissues, amino acids. Fat provides the body with energy. Protein can also provide the body with energy but must be converted to glucose by the liver and kidneys. Ketones enter the bloodstream when fat is burned for energy when glucose is not readily available.

 

High levels of ketones are toxic to the body. Some tissues cannot use the ketones and require glucose; if there is not enough protein available, the body scavenges protein from muscles to convert into glucose. Basically, the body needs carbohydrates to ensure metabolic balance.

 

Low-carb diets not only negatively affect ready energy sources, they also limit the body’s access to nutrients and antioxidants, which prevent and repair oxidative damage. Fiber is also more challenging to acquire while following a low carb diet. A low carb dieter may only consume 2 to 7 grams of fiber per day, which is well below the recommended 25 to 30 grams.

 

A low carb dieter’s body is forced to draw on its emergency survival mechanisms. This causes a great deal of stress and irritation within the body which can lead to chronic inflammation, because the body is not using the most effective tools to carry out daily functions and repairs. The use of ketones for energy can lead to a toxic state called ketosis. The side effects of ketosis include bad breath, debilitating fatigue, constipation, brain fuzziness, and headaches.

 

Avoiding Chronic Inflammation

 

In order to prevent chronic inflammation, low carb dieters must be selective in their carbohydrate intake. To make the weight loss or desired fitness gains without provoking an immune response, they need to focus on eating carbohydrates with maximum nutrient and fiber density. Examples of low carb fruits and vegetables meeting these criteria include:

 

•Broccoli

•Arugula

•Brussel sprouts

•Avocado

•Greens

•Blueberries

•Raspberries

•Pomegranates

•Kiwi

•Grapes

 

Other superfoods, which supply much-needed antioxidants, are green tea, whey protein, and coffee. Choose colorful and fiber rich fruits and vegetables. They provide the best antioxidant returns for a limited carbohydrate diet.

 

Dehydration also affects low carb dieter’s more frequently and severely; it contributes to constipation and low energy. The body is also not able to dispose of waste as effectively when dehydrated. Fruits and vegetables have significant water content.

 

They supplement any water or other fluids used to keep the body hydrated. Solid food supplies about 20% of the body’s water requirement. Low carb dieters need to pay special attention to keeping hydrated to aid their digestion and overall metabolism and prevent chronic inflammation.

 

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Move over pasta here comes veggies

Try Low Carb Spiral Cut Veggies Instead Of Pasta!

People who switch to a low carb diet don’t have to give up many of the foods that they love.  It just means having to be more creative when you cook.

 There are many different low carbohydrate swaps for high carb-filled recipes that allow you to enjoy, pancakes, pizza, chips, fries and even pasta! Yes, pasta!  

For many, one of the hardest parts of eating low carb is the need to give up pasta that is loaded with starch carbs, but pasta alternatives are made easy with the invention of the spiral cutter! 

Pasta is made from flour which is high in carbs but there are now amazing vegetable cutting tools, that allow you to still enjoy your pasta dishes, in a very low carb healthy version.

Many people who have tried using spiral vegetable cutting tools now swear by them. They have become as important to them as a knife or bowl when preparing healthy meals. 

The remarkable and unique taste of dishes that use spiral cut vegetables combined with the nutritional diet benefits they have has people rushing to learn this new healthy form of cooking. 

What Is A Spiral Vegetable Cutter?

These devices come in a wide variety of models and price ranges. They can be found in different forms, from a hand held spiral vegetable cutter to a machine that you feed the vegetables into that does the work for you. 

The name is somewhat misleading because these devices are excellent at making spiral cut fruits too.

Here are some general guidelines when selecting fruits and vegetables to use in them:

1. Use fruits and vegetables that are very solid, two of the best choices are zucchini and cucumbers

2. Try to avoid using highly irregular shape vegetables and fruits, the straighter the sides the better your spiral cut vegetables will turn out

3. Hollow core vegetables cannot be used

4. A good general guideline is the length of the fruits and vegetables to be cut should be longer than 2 inches and the diameter larger than 1 ½ inch

Here are some examples of fruits and vegetables that typically work well in a spiral vegetable cutter:

• Apples       

• Zucchini 

• Beets        

• Broccoli      

• Butternut Squash      

• Carrots       

• Chayote      

• Cucumbers        

• Onions

• Parsnips

• Pears        

• Plantains        

• Radishes        

• Rutabagas     

• Summer Squash         

Spiral Cut Pasta – Low Carb Style!

Why are spiral cut veggies a good choice? 

• For one it fits the mold when designing a diet that is low in carbs that eliminates high starch foods like pasta

• Another reason is that spiral cut vegetables add some excellent taste and texture to any recipe

• Many savory pasta dishes already feature different vegetables in their recipes to enhance the flavor, so spiral cut vegetables only compliment this trend further

• It is also a well-known fact that it is much easier to maintain a low carb diet when you can mimic and enjoy your carb-filled favorites

So what is the vegetable of choice for making vegetable noodles? 

Currently one of the most popular vegetables to make spiral cut noodles out of is zucchini. 

Once the zucchini has been cut, simply steam the spirals or pour hot water over them to soften them just a bit before adding sauce and other ingredients.

Recipe Ideas

You can make various types of low carb spiral veggie dishes that mimic your favorite pasta recipes.

1. Spiral zucchini with marinara

2. Spiral zucchini with spinach and cream sauce

3. Spiral zucchini with Alfredo sauce with or without chicken and shrimp

4. Spiral zucchini with butter, fresh garlic and parmesan

5. Spiral zucchini with clams

6. Spiral zucchini with sausages and marinara

7. Virtually any other Italian sauce or ingredients you can image

The above can be used as main dishes or even as side dishes to go with your steak, chicken or fish entrées.

There are other vegetables that can be spiral cut to replace starches in recipes including:

• Yellow Summer Squash

• Carrots

• Cucumbers

Give A Spiral Vegetable Cutter A Try

If you are on a low carb diet, then pick up a spiral vegetable cutter and try it. 

You will be amazed how these great high carb swaps will taste. With a spiral cutter, a low carb diet no longer means that you have to cut out your favorite pasta from your menus.

Enjoy and eat well!

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Mark & Sherry Whitney


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