LCHF for Beginners

Do you want to eat real food (as much as you like) and improve your health and weight? It may sound too good to be true, but LCHF (Low Carb, High Fat) is a method that has been used for 150 years. Now, modern science backs it up with proof that it works.

There is no weighing your food, no counting, no bizarre “meal replacements,” no pills. There is just real food and common sense. And all the advice here is 100 percent free.


  1. Introduction
  2. Dietary advice  (in 26 languages)
  3. Theory
  4. Tips and recipes
  5. Cookbooks and more
  6. Frequently asked questions


A LCHF diet means you eat less carbohydrates and a higher proportion of fat. Most importantly you minimize your intake of sugar and starches. You can eat other delicious foods until you are satisfied – and still lose weight.

A number of recent high-quality scientific studies shows that LCHF makes it easier both to lose weight and to control your blood sugar. And that’s just the beginning.

The basics

  • Eat: Meat, fish, eggs, vegetables growing above ground and natural fats (like butter).
  • Avoid: Sugar and starchy foods (like bread, pasta, rice and potatoes).

Eat when you’re hungry until you are satisfied. It’s that simple. You do not need to count calories or weigh your food. And just forget about industrially produced low fat products.

Real food. Add some good fat (like butter).

There are solid scientific reasons why LCHF works. When you avoid sugar and starches your blood sugar stabilizes and the levels of insulin, the fat storing hormone, drops. This increases your fat burning and makes you feel more satiated.

Note for diabetics

  • Avoiding the carbohydrates that raise your blood sugar decreases your need for medication to lower it. Taking the same pre-low-carb diet dose of insulin might result in hypoglycemia (low blood sugar). You need to test your blood sugar frequently when starting this diet and adapt (lower) your medication. This should ideally be done with the assistance of a knowledgeable physician. If you’re healthy or a diabetic treated either by diet alone or just with Metformin there is no risk of hypoglycemia.

Dietary Advice

Eat all you like

  • Meat: Any type, including beef, pork, game meat, chicken, etc. Feel free to eat the fat on the meat as well as the skin on the chicken. If possible try to choose organic or grass fed meat.
  • Fish and Shellfish: All kinds: Fatty fish such as salmon, mackerel or herring are great. Avoid breading.
  • Eggs: All kinds: Boiled, fried, omelettes, etc. Preferably choose organic eggs.
  • Natural Fat, High-Fat Sauces: Using butter and cream when you cook can make your food taste better and make you feel more satiated. Try a Béarnaise or Hollandaise sauce, check the ingredients or make it yourself. Coconut oil and olive oil are also good options.
  • Vegetables that Grow Above Ground: All kinds of cabbage, such as cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage and Brussels sprouts. Asparagus, zucchini, eggplant, olives, spinach, mushrooms, cucumber, lettuce, avocado, onions, peppers, tomatoes etc.
  • Dairy products: Always select full-fat options like real butter, cream (40% fat), sour cream, Greek/Turkish yogurt and high-fat cheeses. Be careful with regular milk and skim milk as they contain a lot of milk sugar. Avoid flavored, sugary and low-fat products.
  • Nuts: Good to eat instead of candy in front of the television (preferably in moderation).
  • Berries: Okay in moderation, if you are not a super strict or sensitive. Good with whipped cream.

Basic tip for beginners: Maximum 5 grams of carbohydrate (excluding fiber) per 100 grams of food

Avoid if you can

  • Sugar: The worst. Soft drinks, candy, juice, sports drinks, chocolate, cakes, buns, pastries, ice cream, breakfast cereals. Preferably avoid sweeteners as well.
  • Starch: Bread, pasta, rice, potatoes, French fries, potato chips, porridge, muesli and so on. “Wholegrain products” are just less bad. Moderate amounts of root vegetables may be OK (unless you’re eating extremely low carb).
  • Margarine: Industrially imitated butter with unnaturally high content of omega-6 fat. Has no health benefits, tastes bad. Statistically linked to asthma, allergies and other inflammatory diseases.
  • Beer: Liquid bread. Full of rapidly absorbed carbs, unfortunately.
  • Fruit: Very sweet, lots of sugar. Eat once in a while. Treat fruit as a natural form of candy.

Once in a while

You decide when the time is right. Your weight loss may slow down a bit.

  • Alcohol: Dry wine (regular red or dry white wine), whisky, brandy, vodka and cocktails without sugar.
  • Dark chocolate: Above 70 % cocoa, preferably just a bit.

Drink most days

  • Water
  • Coffee: Try it with full-fat cream
  • Tea

More healthy tips

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Advice on LCHF in other languages

Do you have another translation or a significant improvement of one of the earlier ones? E-mail me (more info).

The Theory Behind LCHF

What are you designed to eat?

Humans evolved over millions of years as hunter-gatherers, without eating large amounts of carbohydrates. We ate the food available to us in nature by hunting, fishing and gathering all the edible foods we could find. These foods did not include pure starch in the form of bread, pasta, rice or potatoes. We have only eaten these starchy foods for 5 – 10 000 years, since the development of agriculture. Just a limited adaptation of our genes takes place in such a relatively short time.

With the Industrial Revolution, 100 – 200 years ago, we got factories that could manufacture large amounts of pure sugar and white flour. Rapidly digested pure carbohydrates. We’ve hardly had time to genetically adapt to these processed foods.

In the 80s, the fear of fat gripped the western world. Low-fat products popped up everywhere. But if you eat less fat you need to eat more carbohydrates to feel satiated. And it’s at this time in history that our disastrous epidemics of obesity and diabetes started. The most fat-phobic country in the world, the USA, was hit the hardest and is now the world’s most obese country.

Today, it’s clear that the fear of real food with natural fat contents has been a big mistake.

The problem with sugar and starch

All digestible carbohydrates are broken down into simple sugars in the intestines. The sugar is then absorbed into the blood, raising the blood glucose levels. This increases the production of the hormone insulin, our fat storing hormone.

Insulin is produced in the pancreas (pictured to the right). In large amounts insulin prevents fat burning and stores surplus nutrients in the fat cells. After some time (a few hours or less) this may result in a shortage of nutrients in the blood, creating feelings of hunger and cravings for something sweet. Usually at that point people eat again. This starts the process again: A vicious cycle leading to weight gain.

On the other hand, a low intake of carbs gives you a lower, more stable blood glucose, and lower amounts of insulin. This increases the release of fat from your fat stores and increases the fat burning. This usually leads to fat loss, especially around the belly in abdominally obese individuals.

Weight loss without hunger

A LCHF diet makes it easier for the body to use its fat reserves, as their release is no longer blocked by high insulin levels. This may be one reason why eating fat gives a longer feeling of satiety than carbohydrates. It’s been shown in a number of studies: When people eat all they want on a low carb diet caloric intake typically drops

So, no counting or food weighing is necessary. You can forget about the calories and trust your feelings of hunger and satiety. Most people don’t need to count or weigh their food any more than they need to count their breathing. If you don´t believe it, just try for a couple of weeks and see for yourself.

Health as a bonus

No animals in nature need the assistance of nutritional expertise or calorie charts to eat. And still, as long as they eat the food they are designed to eat they stay at a normal weight and they avoid caries, diabetes and heart disease. Why would humans be an exception? Why would you be an exception?

In scientific studies not only is the weight improved on a low carb diet – the blood pressure, blood sugar and cholesterol profile (HDL, triglycerides) are also improved. A calm stomach and less cravings for sweet food are also common experiences.

Initial side effects

If you stop eating sugar and starch cold turkey (recommended) you may experience some side effects as your body adjusts. For most people these side effects tend to be mild and last a just few days. There are also ways to minimize them.

Common during the first week:

  • Headache
  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness
  • Heart palpitations
  • Irritability

The side effects rapidly subside as your body adapts and your fat burning increases. They can be minimized by drinking some extra fluids and by temporarily increasing your salt intake a bit. A good option is to drink some broth every few hours. Alternatively, drink a few extra glasses of water and put extra salt on your food.

The reason for this is that carbohydrate-rich foods may increase the water retention in your body. When you stop eating high-carb foods you’ll lose excess water through your kidneys. This can result in dehydration and lack of salt during the first week, before the body has adapted.

Some people prefer to decrease their intake of carbohydrates slowly, over a few weeks, to minimize the side effects. But the “Nike way” (Just Do It) is probably the best choice for most people. Removing most sugar and starch often results in several pounds lost on the scale within a few days. It may be mostly fluids but it’s great for the motivation.

How low to go?

The less carbohydrate you eat the more pronounced the effect on your weight and blood sugar will be. I recommend following the dietary advice as strict as you can. When you’re happy with your weight and health you may gradually try eating more liberally (if you want to).

The Food Revolution

This presentation I gave at the Ancestral Health Symposium 2011 summarizes the history and science behind the ongoing LCHF revolution.

More theory and practice

Here four of the world’s biggest experts on the subject explain the theory and practice of carb restriction:


Tips and recipes

Breakfast suggestions

  • Eggs and bacon
  • Omelet
  • Leftovers from last night’s dinner
  • Coffee with cream
  • A can of mackerel and boiled eggs
  • Boiled egg with mayonnaise or butter
  • Avocado, salmon and crème fraiche
  • Sandwich on Oopsie-bread
  • A piece of very thin hard bread with lots of butter, cheese, ham, etc.
  • Cheese with butter on it
  • Boiled eggs mashed with butter, chopped chives, salt and pepper
  • A piece of brie cheese and some ham or salami
  • High-fat yoghurt with nuts and seeds (and maybe berries)

Lunch and dinner

  • Meat, fish or chicken dishes with vegetables and a rich full-fat sauce. There are many alternatives to potatoes, such as mashed cauliflower.
  • Stews, soups or casseroles with low-carb ingredients.
  • You can  use most recipes in cookbooks if you avoid the carbohydrate-rich ingredients. It’s often a good idea to add fat (e.g. butter, cream) to the recipe.
  • Drink water with your meal or (occasionally) a glass of wine.


When you eat a low-carbohydrate diet with more fat and a bit more protein you will probably not need to eat as often. Don’t be surprised if you no longer need to snack. Many people do well on two or three meals per day. If you need a snack:

  • Rolled-up cheese or ham with a vegetable (some people even spread butter on cheese)
  • Olives
  • Nuts
  • A piece of cheese
  • A boiled egg from the refrigerator
  • Canned mackerel in tomato sauce

Olives and nuts can replace potato chips in front of the TV. If you always get hungry between meals you’re probably not eating enough fat. Don’t fear fat. Eat more fat until you feel satisfied.

Dining out or meals with friends

  • Restaurants: Usually not a big problem. You can ask to have potatoes/fries switched for a salad. With meat dishes, ask for extra butter.
  • Fast food: Kebab can be a decent option (preferably avoid the bread). In hamburger chains the hamburgers are usually the least bad option. Avoid soft drinks and fries, obviously. Drink water. Pizza toppings are usually OK, and the stricter you are the less of the pizza crust you will eat.
  • If you eat strictly everyday it’s less of a problem to make a few exceptions when you are invited out. If you’re not sure what will be served you can eat something at home before you leave.
  • Nuts or cheese is good “emergency food” when there are no other adequate options to be found.

Shopping list for beginners

Print this list and bring it to the store:

  • Butter
  • Heavy cream (40% fat)
  • Sour cream (34% fat)
  • Eggs
  • Bacon
  • Meat (minced, steaks, stew pieces, fillets, etc.)
  • Fish (preferably fatty fish like salmon or mackerel)
  • Cheese (preferably high-fat)
  • Turkish yoghurt (10% fat)
  • Cabbage (cabbage, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, kale, etc.)
  • Other vegetables that grow above ground
  • Frozen vegetables (broccoli, wok vegetables, etc.)
  • Avocados
  • Olives
  • Olive oil
  • Nuts

Clean out your pantry

Want to maximize your chances of success? Especially if you have difficulty with cravings / sugar addiction, it is smart to throw out (or give away) sugary and starchy foods, “light” products, etc. These include:

  • Candy
  • Potato chips
  • Soft drinks and juices
  • Margarine
  • Sugar in all forms
  • Bread
  • Pasta
  • Rice
  • Potatoes
  • Breakfast cereals
  • Everything that says “low fat” or “no fat”
  • Ice cream
  • Cookies

Why not do it now?

The Serpent in Paradise

Be very skeptical of special “low-carb” products such as pasta or chocolate. Unfortunately these products usually stink. They have prevented the weight loss for loads of people. They’re usually full of carbs once you see through their creative marketing.

For example, Dreamfields’ “low carb pasta” is almost pure starch that’s absorbed more or less like any pasta:

How about low carb bread? Be careful: if it’s baked with grains it’s certainly not low carb. But some companies still try to sell it to you as a low-carb option. Here’s an example:

Low-carb chocolate is usually full of sugar alcohols, which the manufacturer does not count as carbs. But roughly half of these carbs may be absorbed, raising the blood sugar and insulin. The rest of the carbs ends up in the large intestine, potentially causing gas and diarrhea. Furthermore any sweeteners can maintain sugar cravings.

If you want to be healthy and slim, eat real food instead.


Easy ways to cook eggs

  1. Place the eggs in cold water and boil 4 minutes for soft-boiled or 8 minutes for hard-boiled. Eat them with mayo if you like.
  2. Fry eggs in butter on one or both sides. Add salt and pepper.
  3. Melt some butter in the frying pan and add 2 eggs and 2-3 tablespoons of cream per serving. Add salt and pepper. Stir until done. Add some chives and grated cheese on top. Serve with fried bacon.
  4. Make an omelet batter with 3 eggs and 3 tablespoons of cream. Add salt and spices. Melt butter in the frying pan and pour in the batter. When the omelet solidifies on top you can fill it with something tasty. For example one or several kinds of cheese, fried bacon, fried mushrooms, good sausage (read the ingredients) or left-overs from last night’s dinner. Fold the omelet in half and serve with a crispy salad.

Instead of bread

Will you have a hard time living without bread? Ooopsies are a good option. It’s a “bread” without carbs and can be eaten in a variety of ways.

6–8 depending on size.

3 eggs
100 grams (3.5 ounces) of cream cheese
a pinch of salt
½ tablespoon fiberhusk / psyllium seed husks (can be excluded)
½ teaspoon baking powder (can be excluded)

  • Separate the eggs, with the egg whites in one bowl and the egg yolks in another.
  • Whip the egg whites together with the salt until very stiff. You should be able to turn the bowl over without the egg whites moving.
  • Mix the egg yolks and the cream cheese well. If you choose, add the psyllium seed husk and baking powder (this makes the Oopsie more bread-like).
  • Gently fold the egg whites into the egg yolk mix – try to keep the air in the egg whites.
  • Put 6 large or 8 smaller oopsies on a baking tray.
  • Bake in the middle of the oven at 150° C (300° F) for about 25 minutes – until they turn golden.
  • You can eat Oopsies as bread or use them as a bun for a hotdog or hamburger. You can also put different kinds of seeds on them before baking them, for instance poppy, sesame or sunflower seeds. One big Oopsie can be used for a swiss roll: Add a generous layer of whipped cream and some berries. Enjoy.

Less strict: some bread
Can’t live without real bread? Then have a thin piece of bread and add lots of butter and toppings. The more butter and toppings the less bread you need to feel satisfied.

Instead of potatoes, rice, pasta

  • Mashed cauliflower: Divide the cauliflower into smaller pieces and boil them with a pinch of salt until soft. Remove the water. Add cream and butter and mash.
  • Salads made from above-ground vegetables, perhaps with some kind of cheese. Try out different kinds.
  • Boiled broccoli, cauliflower or Brussels sprouts.
  • Vegetables au gratin: Fry squash, aubergine and fennel (or other vegetables you like) in butter. Add salt and pepper. Put in baking dish and add grated cheese. Heat at 225° C (450° F) until the cheese melts and turns golden.
  • Vegetables stewed in cream, e.g. cabbage or spinach.
  • Cauliflower rice: Grate cauliflower, boil for a minute or two. Great substitute for rice.
  • Avocado

Snacks and dessert

  • Mixed nuts
  • Sausage: Cut it in pieces, add a piece of cheese and stick a toothpick through them.
  • Vegetables with dip, Try cucumber sticks, red, yellow or green peppers, cauliflower, etc.
  • Cream cheese rolls: Roll some cream cheese in a piece of salami, air-dried ham or a long slice of cucumber.
  • Olives
  • LCHF chips: On a baking tray, form small piles of grated Parmesan cheese. Heat in oven at 225° C (450° F). Let them melt and get a nice color (be careful – they burn easily). Serve as chips, perhaps with some dip.


There are a million cookbooks with low-carb recipes. Just avoid books that are unnecessarily scared of fat. Remember: If you avoid carbs you have to eat more fat or you’ll be hungry. Don’t fear fat. Fat is your friend. Add fat until you feel satisfied.

Here is a good example:

Good luck with your new LCHF life!


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Further reading

Do you have more questions about LCHF? See my page with common questions and answers.

Do you want to lose weight as effectively as possible? See How to Lose Weight.

Improve this page

Do you have suggestions to improve this page? Have you spotted any mistakes in my grammar or spelling? Please let me know in the comments below!


  1. bels

    Could someone please explain to me how much protein versus fats to eat. I understand the 5% carbs but I seem to put on weight when I eat more fat than protein. I have been watching my carb intake carefully for about 8 months now and seem to lose a bit of weight then suddenly start putting on weight again :( some help here please....

    Replies: #3352, #3355
  2. Zepp
    Yes.. protein is for your essentiall demand!

    One often say.. minimum 1 gram/kilo a day.. up to 2 gram/kilo a day!

    It means that protein is almoste static in your daily meal plan.

    And then fat.. after you got a few grams of essentiall omega-3.. ie, EPA, DHA, the rest is up to your energy demand!

    Fat or carbs are energy.. protein is essentiall!

    The trick is to make sure one get all thats essentiall like proteins, vitamines, minerals, and let ones buildt in calorie counter deside how much fat to eat.

    One can always count everything in a online calculator, but thats more like a help to get started.

    After a time one get much strated up, then one need to listen to ones body.. ones apetite system, about hunger and satiety!

    Have you read this?

  3. lisa mcclelland
    Reaching out again with a question ,this time regarding plateaus
    Since april 2014 i have lost 45 pounds...duringthe ,last 3-4 weeks, i have been
    holding at the same weight. Is there something i could do to spur the weight loss
    To begin growing very frustrated. Some people are suggesting
    Eating carbs ,as in carb cycling, but frankly i'm afraid to go there
    I still have about 40 or more pounds to i need to exercise?
    Love the results so far but need to keep going,motivated.
    Thanks for your help...also on nutrition facts what is the difference between carbohydrate amount and sugars..i thought carbs were sugars? As always, Txs for your help!
    Reply: #3354
  4. Zepp
    Let me put it this way.. you have lost a lot alredy.. and probably its your body that take a break to adapt to the new situation.

    Weightloss is not linear.. it goes in steps.. just keep on and act on new signals from your body.

    I think its in a reboulding fase?

    Excersise is a good thing.. mostly for your healt, strengt and endurance.. it have some good implications on healt markers too.

    Excersise make you fiter!

    Its different in USA and EU.. in USA there is all carbs carbs, in EU we make a differens about fibers and digestble carbs.

    And somtimes they write the amount of sugar added.. to that natural sugars/carbs.. in other cases they wright how much plain sugars there is even if its natural.

    Go for carbs or if in USA take away the fibers from total carbs.

    Reply: #3357
  5. Terry
    Bels, thats a good question and one I'm sure a lot of people ask!

    There is the formula for protein but what about fat? For me fat is really just about satiating hunger. It is not necessarily a fixed portion or amount. I have as much as I need to make myself feel full and that is it! If you are taking more that that, chances are you are giving your body more than it needs and it can slow down or stall weight loss and if you have too much you probably will gain.

    There are a lot of different ways you can eat on this diet, some people are more 'on demand' eaters and only take food when their appetite calls for it and if that's what works for them and helps maintain weight loss - do it! But that is not practical for some families for example where there's a bunch of people to feed and you need routine.

    For myself, my body responds most positively weight loss wise when I give it a routine. And I adjust my portions to suit that routine and ultimately my hunger drives the portion size. So I only have enough to keep me satiated to lunch, than same from lunch to dinner and I regulate meal volume and fat accordingly to what my hunger demands. If I start feeling full longer that the routined meal I usually skip a meal and add a snack to carry me over and adjust portion sizes accordingly the next time round. If I go to low in my main meals I add a small snack in between. So it is something of a dynamic routine adjusted over time by what my body demands energy wise. Don't eat more than you need though. If you start to feel full - STOP and put it in the fridge and have it latter if you need an in-between snack to top up.

    As far as portions go I aim to have twice as much low carb vegetables as meat and satiate with moderate amounts fat as my body requires to maintain a sense of fullness - no more! If you feel hungry, add more fat, if you feel full for too long, try either reducing portion size or fat and see how you go.

    Everybody is different though so you need to listen to for own body and see what works best for you.

  6. bels
    Hi Zepp, Terry,

    Thanks for the advice although I still don't understand what Zepp is saying with the ratio's. What does that mean?

  7. bels
    ok got it. Think the problem is that my protein is too low and fats too high for that level of protein. I will see how that goes now that I have amended it.
    Thanks again
    Replies: #3358, #3359
  8. Zepp
    Count about 20E% protein in a mix of meat, fish, chicken, cheese, eggs!

    As Terry explain.. fat is your energy, protein is a building stone.

    If one rely on fatty meat, one seldome need more fat.. but for chicken and white fish one need some sauces or melting butter.

    Its for you to be unhungry to next meal.. and its perfect if you get hungry prior to that meal.

    And planning is a good thing, it make almoste anything easyer.. try to hit a meal pattern that is working in your social context

  9. Terry
    I think your right Bels, to much fat and not enough protein would explain the stalling and weight gain.

    I kind of look at fats as being like a carb but in a slow release form. They have a similar effect on the body but overall their release is a lot slower.

    One thing I noticed when I went from carbs to fat is that taking fat impacts my body in a noticeably different way. Carbs are like an instant 'hit', like a drug almost. They hit the blood stream very quickly and give you a certain kind of 'high' that especially if you're hungry is a very nice feeling! Perhaps why they are so addictive.

    Where as fats are a little slower to release and generally take a little longer to hit the bloodstream and satiate hunger in the way carbs do. So what I was saying about stopping when you start to feel full is important because the feeling of fullness can sometimes increase after you've eaten and I find it's better to park the excess food in the fridge and have it latter if I feel a little hungry again, than it is to stuff myself on the spot and end up pushing too much energy into my bloodstream! That can result in weight gain or stalling.

    Anyway, sounds like you're onto it so see how that goes.

  10. Erwin
    So I started LCHF diet about 3 weeks ago. For the first week, I lost a total of 8 lbs and I was really happy about it. Then, for the last two weeks, I haven't lost a single pound (though I'm not gaining any either). I eat two meals a day and they are usually 5 to 6 hours apart. For breakfast, I have 2 to 3 slices of bacon, 2 links of sausage low sugar low carb, and 2 eggs. For dinner, I usually have rib soup with zucchinis and mushrooms, or fatty steak with broccoli. I'm currently at 217lbs and 5 foot 9. I honestly don't know what I've been doing wrong. Please help!
    Replies: #3362, #3363, #3364
  11. Colin Keogh
    First full week on the plan and have lost 4.5 pounds very happy
  12. Zepp
    First you lose some water.. then it start comin back.. you can lose fat but gain some water back.

    You just started and lost some water.. its frome now it gonna happen.

    Its imposible to say that you do anything wrong yet!

    Make it at least three months befor you evaluate.

    This is not a quick fix.. starving is a quick fix.. but I dont recomend starving.. its not that satisfying like LCHF!

  13. Terry
    Erwin, yes, water loss the first week, it's part of what the body does when it steps into ketosis, which is what you are experiencing at the moment. I experienced the exact same thing when I put my body into ketosis - my weight plateaued - and it should be noted that I was actually losing weight at the time, but the old diet still had too many carbs because my blood sugar was spiking which is why I went to a full LCHF as I'm diabetic - and I feel that much better for it!!!

    So give your body some time to sort itself out and stick with the diet while your body adjusts itself, you will see the weight loss benefits over time as Zepp said.

    This link might help to identify any hinderances - it's more for those that have been on the diet and may have stalled - but It's still worth a read as a check list for somebody new. I think yours is more because your body is adjusting right now though. Be patient!

  14. Terry
    Erwin, a little more reading for you…

    The 'How to lose weight' articles are being added to progressively on this site, but this one is for you…

    It's worth reading all of the articles from the top as it will also help you understand more about the journey you are on...

  15. Jenny
    Just curious how much weight people have lost with this diet/lifestyle and in what length of time? Thanks!
    Reply: #3370
  16. Sonnett ZA
    Please advise whether palm oil is ok to use/ consume?
    Reply: #3367
  17. Zepp
    Palm oil is saturated fat.. most of it.. but they say its a invironmental issue instead.

    Its healty.. and they use it nowadays to make margarine.

  18. stephen
    Just wondering is this type of diet safe for type 1 diabetics due to type 1s needing carbohydrates?
    Replies: #3369, #3371, #3372, #3373
  19. Zepp
    Its safe for type1 too!

    And our bodyes dont need carbs.. it need some small amounts of glucose.

    And our body do make it if you dont eat them.

    One problem for type1 is that there body can make to much glucose if they dont take enough insulin.

    But as a type 1 I recomend a smoth transitation and measuring both glucose and ketones!

    Listen to Dr Bernstein.. he is type 1 him self!

  20. Terry
    Jenny, for me about 16kg over a year or so, and still losing. Best of all it's easy. Once your body adjusts to dropping carbs and implementing fat it becomes very easy to maintain as a lifestyle as it's more about the body telling the mind what it wants than the mind telling the body. That is the complete reverse of a lot of other diets and why for me it is much easier to maintain.

    Plus you get the added health benefits. Every time I go to the doctor and get my blood tests done, the results are improvement in all areas!!! My body tells me this is what it was designed for. You'll realize that when you get into it.

    Some testimonies for you to get inspired by…

  21. Terry
    Stephen, another way to look at the fat vs carb scenario is that the fat is like a slow release form of carb, at least that is how it behaves when it hits the blood stream. So in effect everything stabilizes and becomes far more manageable because you aren't dealign with the volatile ups and downs that carbs will inevitable produce.

    Andreas demonstrates it in The Food Revolution video above from about the 27 to 28 minute mark on.

    It's an adjustment to what you'd normally be used to no doubt so perhaps you could find a physician that supports the low carb diet approach and they can help guide you though the process of change while you re-manage your diet?

  22. Terry
    Stephen, a follow up to help propel you forward if uncertain as a type 1...

    There is a scientific review from a large group of scientists outlining low carb as the best way to manage both type 2 and type 1.

    The report is here.

    The report is long though so some quick key points for you as a type1.

    The intro paragraph here outlines the basic premise...

    Point 11 is specifically targeted to type 1…

    You'll see that the diet manages blood sugar levels in such a manner that the body is a lot more self regulating. It is literally life changing for a diabetic!

    For myself, as a type 2, I can not rave enough how much better I feel under this diet. The physiological ups and downs really are a thing of the past now and my A1c is down over 10 mmol/mol to below pre diabetes and it is entirely as a result of a low carb diet. My lipid tests now read normal as well. I have also been able to lose a lot of weight!

    The reason I mentioned the supportive physician is because mine is and it has been invaluable on my journey to recovery as he has been very supportive both of the diet and helping me over any occasional humps that rise up along the way. It is also great seeing the blood test consistently coming back with improvements in all areas every time. I think we both derive pleasure from that, so that is my word to encourage you to go forward and be well!

  23. Terry
    I see those links didn't load up properly. They work if you copy and paste the whole line in your browsers web address bar.

    The original link to the report came from here…

  24. dora
    I love martinini extra dry,can I drink it insted of wine?
  25. dora
    im scared to start the diet,i think that if u eat all fat u want will gain wait so quick!then what?:(
    Reply: #3376
  26. Zepp
    I can tell you that there are exactly the same amounts of energi in a calorie of fat as in a calorie of carbs!

    Its more about to not be afraid for fat.. one eat normal amounts.

  27. Barb
    Is there a low carb pasta option? I cant give spaghetti & meatballs!
    Reply: #3382
  28. Gary

    I'm just confused about the consumption of cheese and heavy cream on LCHF. I use cheese quite a bit on most of my meals to increase my fat intake. I also use heavy cream each morning with full fat greek yoghurt as my breakfast.

    After reading the 'how to lose weight' page on this site, it seemed to suggest to eat less dairy products such as cream and cheese.

    So my question is, should I be eating cream and cheese on LCHF or avoiding it if my primary goal is to lose weight?

    thanks in advance!


    Replies: #3381, #3384
  29. Leandri
    Hi, can I eat popcorn?
    Reply: #3383
  30. Heidi
    Read the 'wiki faq' of this page! It answers so many questions.
  31. Zepp
    Its the question of dairys.. dont live on dairys.. eat proper meals, use dairys to/in your meals.

    Milk is a special food for mamal childs to grow and put on weight.

    Butter is regarded as pure fat, cheese is a lump of protein and fat.

  32. Terry
    Barb, I'm not aware of any low carb pastas as such, although I've been doing some research on Shirataki as it sounds like a viable alternative (I share the same passion as you for meatballs & spaghetti by the way!) but I got a little put off after reading this review here:
    Still, I'm going to find some and decide for myself.

    If you're looking for alternative recipes for ground beef that's in the same vein as meatballs and spaghetti, there's a recipe for Bolognese Lasagna in the 'Low Carb Gourmet' book shown at the top of the comments on this page that uses a 'Lasagna Noodle' layer that's made from cream cheese, eggs, cream, S&P, mozzarella & cheddar cheese that you blend and bake separate as a sort of 'sheet' before layering in the rest of the ingredients as you would a lasagna.

    It also has other ground meat recipes like Shepherds pie, Lamb Moussaka & Pork Meatballs amongst others. It's an excellent book actually, and all the ingredients are very accessible in a supermarket.

  33. Terry
    Leandri, that deceptive little treat is nearly 50% carbs so no, don't go near it. I tested it one time in an evening just to see what would happen and woke up the next morning still feeling bloated. It sticks to the ribs and slows everything down!

    You can use the usa database but it's not very accurate…

  34. Terry
    Gary, use this diet here to get a sense of volume for the different components in your meal plan.

    I personally am very carful with the volume of cheese I take each day as it's the one fat that can very quick put the breaks on weight loss for me. I typically only consume no more than about half of the recommended volume in this plan. That's just me though. Each person is different.

    Also, make sure you are getting a good dose of greens in your meals each day. They add volume, but also vital nutritional benefits and are especially important if you're pushing your carbs really low.

    Aim to feel a little hungry before each meal if you can.

  35. James Hall
    Hello folks, thank you to all the posters kind enough to offer advice to us newbies. I started LCHF about a month ago and I have lost just over 20lb. But, honestly it just feels like every other calories restricted diet , namely hunger and dissatisfaction lol.

    I am 300lb lightly active and would very much appreciate some suggestions for calorie intake. I have been eating under 20g carbs with a 5% carbs, 20% protein 75% fat calorie split. Obviously it is working as I am losing weight though slower than I have done on traditional low calorie diets. My calorie intake varies from around 1600-2100

    Reply: #3386
  36. Zepp
    Ofcourse you are hungry.. becuse if one is at 300 pounds one often need more then 1600-2100 to be satisfyed.

    Soo.. you are doing both calorie restriction and LCHF at the same time.. are you in a hurry for somthing?

  37. dora
    I am 4th day on this diet and my weight is still same:(i didnt lose even a pound!Everybody is saying they lost couple pounds in a week.I am very strict with this diet,so what it wrong with me?
    Reply: #3388
  38. Terry
    Now is the time to be patient Dora. The body is doing all kinds of weird and wonderful things in the initial stages, so you absolutely need to look to the longer term to see the success of the diet you have only just begun! Don't fret, all is well. Carry on.
  39. Garry Lee
    I lost no weight in the first two weeks. It started after that but did not progress in a uniform manner. There were plateaus, but the end result was that I lost 28lb (which is what I needed to lose) in about 20 weeks.
    Watch the carbs from milk (I gave it up and only use cream) and persist.
    There's no point in doing this diet if it's not for life, so just persist.
  40. James Hall
    @ Zepp, Thank you for your reply , I am not in a great hurry lol it took a long while to get so fat so I expect it to take a long while to lose weight. Your mention of calorie restriction is my point exactly, all recommended calorie intakes based on BMR etc suggest that I should be eating around the 2100 calorie mark.

    The LCHF as proposed here gives a rough guide to what one should eat not how much.The old eat until you are full and eat only when hungry while no doubt excellent advice .Is not so simple to achieve especially for folk like myself or even heavier whose weight is well beyond the norm. I have read the Gary Taubes book on calories and understand the basics of this fairly well. I would very much appreciate links to resources that suggest suitable intakes { fats , carbs, protein rough calorie intake etc ] .


    Replies: #3391, #3394
  41. Zepp
    Then you know that in the end its calories anyhow!

    But that different calories affect your body in a different way.

    And its there LCHF comes in.. making the body able to use fat as predominant fuel.

    Its nothing magic.. its natural and make a hormonial change toward fat burning.

    You know noone knows what your body needs for energy.. but there are a lot of sciens about mean energy demand for different people.

    And those online food calculators use those matematical calculations.

    Go for those advices about calories in the begining and adjust as you learn more about your own energy demand.

    Heres another simple advice for beginners.

  42. Leela
    I have high cholesterol, this diet won't help that.
    Replies: #3393, #3395
  43. Zepp
    Its dependant of why!

    The moste comon cause of bad blood lipids is still metabolic syndrome!

    Here you can listen to seminar about it.

    Mine got better.. nearly good!

  44. Terry
    My point exactly!

    When one reads dietary advice like 'Eat All You Like' then directly under it 'Meat', who's to say you can't eat large portions of fatty meat 3 times a day and the occasional vegetable with as much fat you can possibly fit in yourself yourself according to the immediate advice given on this page?

    My guess is at least 50% of the dietary problems that arise here are as a result of their being no sense of balance given from the onset for the different components in the diet.

    How is one meant to know? Just guess?!! Grrr, makes me a bit grumpy.

    Doc, I say this without any sense of pretension, If you knew me you would know I am not that kind of a person - would you please consider adding more information here that addresses a sense of balance as it is by no means addressed and for anybody that's new and even those that have been on the diet a while, it is both sensible and critical information!

    Why give them a bad start? Don't we want them to succeed?

    Sorry, just feel strongly about this issue.

  45. Terry
    Leela, mine steadily improved when I started this diet and became normal at my last blood test.

    The diet improves cholesterol in my experience.

    You can see more stories if you type 'cholesterol' in the search at the top of the page.

  46. Leela
    I am reading more, thanks, and trying to get a sense of proportions of fat, protein, etc., per meal and per day.

    I'm intrigued because my initial belief after my last blood tests results, that I would have to eat low fat and low carb, made me want to cry. This gives me the strength to go on. Ha, ha. Only slightly kidding.

    I've noticed you don't mention beans...

  47. James Hall
    thank you for the link Zepp that is very useful. Having read a lot of the articles and comments on this website you really play a great part offering advice and suggestions cheers
    Reply: #3398
  48. Zepp
    Then you know by now that there are no magic diets.. "one diet fits all/solve every problem"!

    I can tell by 90% certanty that if one get to 300 pounds one must have some metabolic problems.. it cant be all gluttony!

    Gluttony can be a part of it.. but not the whole thing.. and then it is the question about wich comes first the hen or the egg!

    I can tell that a person that weight 300 pounds need more calories then one that weights 150 pounds.

    The question is how to come down to 150 pounds.. one need to burn a lot of fat.. then one have to make the body be able to use fat as predominat fule.. and then the gluttony often disapper.

    And to make the body to be a fat burning machine one cant eat a lot of carbs.. becuse it burns carb first and store the fat for famine days.

    Soo.. how much should one eat then on LCHF.. its a tricky question.. one need to learn to listen to the body and interpret the signals right.. its a long strugle.

    But one need to do that strugle anyhow.. becuse if one can rely on apetite and the right food.. its a lifestyle that last.

    Soo you need to start some where.. and one learn moste by doing mistakes.. dont be afraid of doing mistakes, dont let them be permanent!

  49. Terry
    Leela, this is quite useful if you need a comprehensive list of foods that fit with LCHF

    And this for checking out individual foods available carb content…

  50. DANDI
    Hi all,

    I'm about 2 weeks into the LCHF diet...then again, I'm actually trying to follow the components of Timothy Ferris' book The 4-Hour Body which is how I arrived at this form of eating, which I think is classified as LCHF, but I'm not sure. A little about me, I'm a 42 y/o mom of 3 preteens who is 5'2, 210 pounds (down to 208 in the past 2 weeks) and I've suffered from Metabolic Syndrome on and off in line with when I gain and lose weight respectively. I'm SO tired of my doctor hitting me with bad test results and I honestly feel like giving up...I was on Metformin (pre-diabetes) but couldn't take the way it made me feel, I'm also on a BP med, a Thyroid med, and High Potency Omega's to try and bring all of this drama into subjection. I also take a host of other self-prescribed supplements such as selenium, cinnamon, and the AGG/PAGG protocol that Ferris recommends in his book. The funny thing about me is that even for my size I'm athletically built everywhere...except my torso and midsection where I have a monster of a tummy! I've been on other diets such as the hcg diet where results and weight loss are extremely rapid (20 pounds in 21 days) so trying to be patient with the LCHF process is really hard! I need to desperately release about 40 pounds sooner than later. Does anyone out there have any advice for my situation? I know this post is all over the map but I just wanted to include my thoughts about where I am :-)...

    Replies: #3403, #3404
  51. DANDI
    Forgot to ask if Almond Milk is okay for the LCHF program. I've been having at least one smoothie a day made with Almond milk, ice, avocado, brown rice/egg/or whey protein powder, cottage cheese, peanut butter powder, and I sometimes add a cup of coffee to the mix. The smoothie usually comes out to be about 30g or more of protein. Is this okay for breakfast and/or lunch or dinner?
    Reply: #3405
  52. Leela
    Thank you...I am reading all this stuff. Eating the protein is easy, the hard part is vegetable washing, drying and preparing salads everyday.
  53. Terry
    Dandi, I hear your frustration.

    I think the most important thing for you is to take LCHF as a lifestyle. The kind of health improvements you are looking for will happen, but it takes time and by taking LCHF as a lifestyle it lets you reform new eating habits that will not only bring improvement to what you are looking for now, they will set you up for life!

    I to was on BP pills when I started. I was diagnosed with type 2, my metabolism was all over the place and I was well over weight! I also had a negative reaction to Metformin and had to stop it, so we have a lot in common.

    Now after over a year on a low carb diet my HbA1c is below pre diabetes, I am no longer on any medications, my BP and Cholesterol are all in normal range and I have lost 17kg/73.5 lbs. And it is 100% as a result of a low carb diet.

    Some changes need to happen for you, but you need to be encourage by the thousands of others who have experienced the same. I have confidence It will be your experience too if you take the time you need to recover.

  54. Zepp
    Well, Im not that sure that this 4 hour diet is the same as LCHF?

    Its rather seems to be low GI/Dukan/WW!

    LCHF is perticaly for those with metabolic syndrome or diabetes!

    The odd thing is that LCHF focus on High Fat.. replacing carbs with fat and ketones!

    And to make you understand the differens I provide some links;

    In other words.. LCHF is like Atkins diet!

  55. Terry
    Dandi, in addition to the meal plans Zepp just gave you, I think it's also helpful to have a rough guide of volumes when you're starting out. You can tweak it as you go along.

    Firstly say off sugar and carbs! Look at the side of packs, only the ones with very low carbs/sugar are acceptable.

    For protein the accepted daily norm is between between .8 and about 1.8 grams/kilo of your body weight. Use this site to convert lb to kg:
    and some reading about proteins:

    Eat as many low carb veges as you like, it's pretty hard to break the 50g carb barrier and I think a good dose of veges is also important at the start while you're body enters into ketosis, and especially with the conditions you described. For now avoid higher carb veges like carrots, potatoes and sweet squashes, they're for latter when your weight is down.

    Eat as much fat as you need to help satiate your hunger. Don't max out on it, it's not necessary. This part will take some time to learn. Think of fat as a slow release form of a carb. And you'll learn you often feel more satisfied for longer with fat compared to carbs. Take advantage of to and don't eat you next meal till your body says 'food now please'. Use a low carb snack in between meals if you need to.

    I suggest you keep a count of the Protein, Carbs & Fat in your meals the next few weeks to get a sense of how much volume each food type takes.
    Use this website as a guide for foods without labels if you need to.

    Try and pace your meals so that you are a bit hungry before the next meal.

    Now go enjoy your new lifestyle and reap the benefits in good health going forward!


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