A Low-Carb Diet for Beginners

A Low-Carb Diet for Beginners

Do you want weight loss without hunger? Or type 2 diabetes reversal and other health benefits? Then a low-carb diet is a good choice.

You can eat all you need to feel satisfied – there’s no calorie counting required. No products. No pills. No surgery. Just real food.

A low-carb diet restricts sugary foods, and starches like pasta or bread. Instead you’ll eat delicious real foods, including protein, natural fats and vegetables.1

Low-carb diets just work. They’ve been used for over 150 years and just about everyone knows someone who has successfully tried it. Scientific studies now prove that compared to other diets, low carb is more effective.2 Below you can learn how to use low carb to achieve your personal goals.

Make low carb even simpler by signing up for our free two-week low-carb challenge. Get unlimited meal plans, shopping lists and much else with a free membership trial.

 

 

What is Low Carb?

A low-carb diet means you eat fewer carbohydrates and a higher proportion of fat. This is often called a low-carb, high-fat diet (LCHF).

Most importantly, you minimize your intake of sugar and starches. You can eat other delicious foods until you are satisfied – and still lose weight.3

Many high-quality scientific studies show that a low-carb diet makes it easier both to lose weight and to control your blood sugar. And that’s just the beginning.

Learn more about the benefits of low carb

The basics

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

Eat when you’re hungry, until you’re satisfied. It’s that simple. Here are examples of what you could eat:

Top 30 recipes

You do not need to count calories or weigh your food. And just forget about industrially produced low-fat products.

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

Who should NOT do a strict low-carb diet?

checklistMost people can safely start any kind of low-carb diet right away. But in the following three situations you may need extra preparation or adaptation:

If you’re not in any of these groups, you’re good to go. Great!




 

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What to Eat on a Low-Carb Diet

Here’s a quick visual guide to low carb. For details check out the links below. Let’s start with the foods you can eat all you like of, until you’re satisfied.

Low-carb diet foods: Natural fats (butter, olive oil); Meat; Fish and seafood; Eggs; Cheese; Vegetables that grow above ground

 
All the numbers are grams of digestible carbs per 100 grams (3.5 ounces). Fiber is not counted, you can eat all the fiber you want.

All the foods above are below 5% carbs, as you can see. Sticking to these foods will make it relatively easy to stay on a strict low-carb diet, with less than 20 grams of carbs per day.

More detailed low-carb foods list

What to drink on low carb: water, coffee, tea, wine

So what do you drink on low carb? Water is perfect, and so is coffee or tea. Ideally, use no sweeteners, and a modest amount of milk or cream if you like (beware of caffe latte!).

The occasional glass of wine is fine too (low-carb alcohol guide).
 

Try to avoid

Here’s what you should not eat on low carb – foods full of sugar and starch:
Foods to avoid on low carb: bread, pasta, rice, potatoes, fruit, beer, soda, juice, candy

 
The numbers are grams of digestible carbs per 100 grams (3.5 ounces), unless otherwise noted.

A more detailed list of foods to avoid

 

Visual low-carb guides

Meal plans

14-Day Low-Carb Meal Plan

Get lots of weekly low-carb meal plans, complete with shopping lists and everything, with our amazing premium meal planner tool (free trial).

How low to go?

The fewer carbohydrates you eat, the bigger the effects on 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 carefully try eating more liberally (if you want to).

Here are three examples of what a low-carb meal can look like, depending on how many carbs you eat per day:

 
 
A strict low-carb diet is often called a ketogenic (or “keto”) diet.
 

Get started

For everything you need to get started – meal plans, shopping lists, daily tips and troubleshooting – just sign up for our free 2-week keto low-carb challenge:

challenge_pic2

 

countries3Advice on LCHF in other languages

Arabic, Brazilian Portuguese, Bulgarian, (pdf) (another version), Chinese, Chinese (Taiwan), Croatian, Czech, Danish (Word), Dutch, Estonian, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hungarian (pdf), Icelandic, Indonesian, Italian, Korean, Latvian, Lithuanian, Macedonian, Norwegian, Polish (pdf), Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Ruthenian, Serbian, Slovak, Spanish (Word), Swahili, Swedish, Thai, Turkish, Ukrainian and Uzbek.

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


 



 
 

Success Stories

Here’s inspiration: Hundreds of success stories. Slide image below horizontally to see more stories.

 


 

All success stories





 

How Low-Carb Diets Work

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. Our genes only undergo limited adaptions 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 wheat flour. Rapidly digested pure carbohydrates. We’ve hardly had time to genetically adapt to these processed foods.

In the 80’s, 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 blood glucose levels. This increases the production of the hormone insulin, our fat-storing hormone.

Insulin

Insulin is produced in the pancreas. In large amounts it prevents fat burning and stores surplus nutrients in fat cells. After some time (a few hours or less) this may result in a perceived 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

An LCHF diet makes it easier for the body to use its fat reserves, as fat release is no longer blocked by high insulin levels. This may be one reason why eating fat produces a feeling of longer-lasting satiety than carbohydrates. This has 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.

Do you want to know more? Here are our top videos on the topic:

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.

Here are the most common benefits:


 


 


 

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 side effects in 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 more fluids and by temporarily increasing your salt intake a bit. A good option is to drink broth every few hours. Alternatively, drink a few extra glasses of water and put more 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 a 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. This may be mostly fluids but it’s great for motivation.

The 6 most common problems on low carb


 

Less common issues on low carb



All low-carb side effects and how to cure them

 

Low-carb myths

There are many unfounded fears about low carb, that are mostly based on myths and misunderstandings. Read all about them on our low-carb fears page, or choose a specific topic below:



The Food Revolution

This talk from 2016 summarizes the history and science behind the ongoing LCHF revolution.

Top videos about low-carb basics

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

More (for members)

Top low-carb movies

All movies (for members)

 


 



 

Low-Carb Tips and Guides

Choose a topic below for a thorough low-carb guide on it.
 

 

 

Low-carb breakfasts

Breakfast is a great time to eat low carb – think eggs & bacon with coffee. And there are many more great options. Below are a few of our most popular low-carb breakfast recipes.

No fan of eating breakfast? On low carb you may not feel hungry in the morning. If so, it’s fine to skip breakfast – many people do.
 

All 40+ breakfasts

Low-carb meals

There’s no end to the amazing food you could have for lunch and dinner on low carb. These are the currently most popular low-carb meal recipes.
 

All 130+ meals


Low-carb side dishes

All side dishes


Low-carb condiments

All condiments


Low-carb snacks

All snacks


Low-carb desserts

All desserts


Low-carb bread

All breads


Shopping list for beginners

Print this list and bring it to the grocery store:

  • Butter
  • Heavy cream (40% fat)
  • Sour cream (full fat)
  • Eggs
  • Bacon
  • Meat (minced, steaks, stew pieces, fillets, etc.)
  • Fish (ideally 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 difficult cravings / sugar addiction, it’s smart to throw out (or give away) sugary and starchy foods, low-fat products, etc. These include:

  • Candy
  • Potato chips
  • Soft drinks and juices
  • Margarine
  • Sugar in all forms
  • Bread
  • Wheat flour
  • 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 work poorly. They have prevented weight loss for loads of people. They’re commonly full of carbs once you see through the creative marketing.

Carb FictionFor example, Dreamfields’ “low carb pasta” is almost pure starch, which is absorbed more or less like any pasta, albeit slowly:

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 blood sugar and insulin. The rest of the carbs ends up in the colon, potentially causing gas and diarrhea. Furthermore, any sweeteners may maintain sugar cravings.

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

 




 

Recipes

For all of our low-carb recipes check out our main low-carb recipe page.


 


 

Learn More

 


Low Carb is Fantastic for Reversing Type 2 Diabetes and Normalizing Blood Sugar

Do you have type 2 diabetes? If not, you most likely know someone who does. And low carb is fantastic for treating type 2 diabetes.

DiabetesTestF9-reversedIt only makes sense that eating less of what turns into blood sugar (carbohydrates) makes it easier to keep blood sugar down. Low carb may be so effective that people with diabetes need to reduce their medication – especially insulin doses – immediately.

A better blood sugar from day 1. Less need for medication. And weight loss as a bonus. Low carb is a fantastic treatment for type 2 diabetes.

Learn more about Low Carb and Diabetes

PS: People with type 1 diabetes can also benefit from a low-carb diet. Learn More



How to Lose WeightHow to Lose Weight

Losing Weight Effortlessly
on Low Carb

Some people lose weight fantastically well on low carb, immediately on the first try. Perhaps the weight even stays off forever.

For others it can be a more of a challenge. Do you want to lose more weight or lose weight faster? There are many things you can do to improve your chances.

Read more about How to Lose Weight

 
 


Blood Pressure

 

Normalizing Blood Pressure on Low Carb

An elevated blood pressure reliably drops on low carb. This can be clearly seen in scientific trials, and it’s a very common experience for people trying it.

In fact, this effect can be so marked that people on blood pressure medication may end up feeling dizzy and tired from too low blood pressure. They’ve basically become too healthy for their medication!

If this happens you’ll have to reduce the dose of your blood-pressure medication, or stop taking it completely, with guidance from your doctor.

Learn more about Blood Pressure and Low Carb



 

Side Effects on Low Carb

Avoiding Side Effects on Low Carb

Do you struggle when starting low carb? Do you get a headache, leg cramps, constipation or any of the six most common side effects? It’s usually possible to avoid them – and feel great while losing weight.

The main solution to most common problems when starting low carb is to increase the intake of water and salt. It’s even better to do it preventatively during the first week. If you do, you’ll most likely not experience any of these problems, or they’ll only be minor.

Learn about the 6 common side effects on low carb – and how to cure them

 



 

Times 1984 and 2014

1984  Fear of Fat →
2014  “Eat Butter”

Chances are you’ve heard that a low-carb diet will kill you. This as a low-carb diet normally means we eat a higher proportion of fat instead.

This old idea is based on the belief that natural fat is not good for us. Even though humans have always been eating fat, somehow it’s supposed to mess up our bodies, raising our cholesterol and giving us a heart attack.

The good news is that we now know that this idea was simply wrong. Check out these two covers of TIME magazine. The first one is from 1984 – the start of the intense fear of fat. Instead of natural food we got lots of low-fat products, loaded with added sugar and starch. This, not so coincidentally, marked the start of the modern obesity epidemic.

The second cover is more current, from 2014. It says “Eat butter” and the story is about how scientists are now realizing they were wrong to fear fat. What a difference 30 years make!

Just about everybody already knows that low-carb works for weight loss (and some other things). The good news is that we now also know it’s safe… and likely even a very healthy way to eat.


Learn more about the obsolete fear of fat

Learn more about the causes of the obesity epidemic

 



 

Cholesterol

The unnecessary fear of fat and cholesterol started the epidemics of obesity and diabetes. Modern science shows what the mistake was.

We thought that all cholesterol was harmful. That a low cholesterol was always good, and that a high cholesterol was always bad. This was wrong. The truth is – as usual – more complicated.

More important than having a low cholesterol is to have a good cholesterol profile. To have a lot of the good protecting HDL-cholesterol, for example. And how do you get that? Well, the easiest way is to avoid sugar and flour, and instead eat enough fat to feel satisfied.

Cholesterol

Avoiding fat and instead eating a lot of easily digestible carbohydrates often causes a dangerous cholesterol profile: small, nasty, dense LDL particles and a shortage of protective HDL-cholesterol. This is probably why low-fat foods seem to cause more heart disease.

Read the science showing how low-carb high-fat improves the cholesterol profile

Read all blog posts on cholesterol
 

 
 

Answers to Your Questions

Low-carb questions and answers

Do you have questions about anything low-carb related? We have ready answers to all common questions – and more.

Low-Carb Questions and Answers
 
 
 


 
 

Next

Keep reading about What to Eat on a Low-Carb Diet

 



 

Improve this page

Do you have any suggestion – big or small – to improve this page?
Anything that you’d like added or changed?
 
Comment below or e-mail me at andreas@dietdoctor.com.

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  1. Check out our 300+ low-carb recipes.

    Visual guides

    Low-carb vegetablesLow-carb fruits

    Low-carb snacksLow-carb nuts

    Low-carb alcohol

  2. Here are two of the top studies showing more weight loss and improvements in risk factors on low carb:

    Similar results have been found in meta-analyses of all studies, for example this recent analysis:

    PLOS ONE 2015: Dietary Intervention for Overweight and Obese Adults: Comparison of Low-Carbohydrate and Low-Fat Diets. A Meta-Analysis

    For many more studies on the topic have a look at our low-carb science page:

    The Science of Low Carb

  3. Does this sound to good to be true? Many people think so initially, and then they experience it for themselves.

    The reason is that our weight is hormonally regulated. Eating fewer carbohydrates lowers blood glucose, lowering the fat-storing hormone insulin. This often makes it way easier to access and burn excess body fat, without hunger or calorie counting.

    Learn more

4,350 Comments

  1. BryanD
    I have been on an LCHF diet for 6 months, after my doctor told me my cholesterol was a little high and I wanted to lose a few pounds. I had a blood workup done when I started and 6 months later. After 6 months I have lost 32 Lbs. but my cholesterol has gotten worse. My total Chol. went from 218mg/dL to 286mg/dL. Hdl from 35mg/dL to 49mg/dL, ldl from 148mg/dL to 205mg/dL, triglycerides from 174mg/dL to 161mg/dL, and my total chol/hdl ratio went from 6.2 to 5.8. Now my doc wants me to go on statins to lower my cholesterol, which I don't want to do. I have been very strict with my LCHF livestyle. I don't understand these results, am I eating to much fat? I am 50 yrs. old, now weigh 178 lbs., 6'-1" tall. Any help from Doc, Zepp or anyone would be appreciated.
    Replies: #4055, #4107
  2. 9feelscook
    A low-carb diet is generally used for losing weight. Some low-carb diets may have health benefits beyond weight loss, such as reducing risk factors associated with diabetes and metabolic syndrome. Great article thanks a lot besides this you can have a look at this too they have great articles about ZERO CARB Recipes : http://9feels.com/category/recipes/zero-carb-recipes
  3. Elizabeth
    Ok, this sounds logical but I am concerned about the high fat..... what about people with high cholesterol? I just saw a post about " BryanD" saying his cholesterol has gotten higher. This is of great concern to me. I am a diabetic and have high cholesterol and am on medication, high blood pressure and on medication and the rest of the typical problems that come with diabetes and on all the medications.
    Is there an exact menu or meal plan to follow? I do much better when I have exact menus and examples.
    Please help, this really is a matter of life and death. My weight is killing me and making my diabetes worse. I am sick of being sick and tired.
    Reply: #4056
  4. Forky
    Hi Caeleigh,

    You are absolutely correct, I never take offence if I am wrong and debate should always be encouraged (proper debate is missing from our lives since the introduction of the ego).

    Your comments about exercise are equally correct, if there is a need for exercise then do it.
    My point was about the "correct" amount of exercise to maintain a normal life, and is going to a Gym or deliberately working out required for all of us?
    Is there a happy balance of undertaking normal movement which produces the effects you mention, or can they only be attained through rigorous expenditure of energy.
    From my own experience, I now see that it was what I was eating that was causing all of my problems and from simply adjusting my diet, my physical health (through no increased amount of exercise) has improved significantly.

    The reason I commented was that all of my colleagues spend at least 2 hours in the Gym each day, they eat the full Carb diet and yet don't appear to be benefiting from the excessive exercise, other than the social pleasures.

    In my book, I am sure excessive exercise is fun for some, but normal amounts of daily movement might be enough.

    Best Wishes and enjoy your exercise (there is a very good chance I may be wrong),

    Ps, If I may allow my ego to creep in here, I was a megga fatty before the change in diet attitude and I now have a "six pack" from doing nothing more than undertaking normal duties (I do have an elderly dog I walk very slowly twice a day for a few hundred yards, but the rest is just normal energy expenditure).

  5. Forky
    Hi BryanD,

    Forgetting about the scientific results from your blood work for a moment, how do you feel in yourself?

    With regards to the duper-duper Cholesterol readings you have been given (super-duper as in what in fact do they actually mean, taking into account the same people giving you these brilliant figures also prescribe a carb loaded diet that will kill you), do you enjoy normal table salt with your food (if you do, change it to a natural salt that has no filler added, then go back to your Doctor in a few months time)?

    After reading a good fair few of these posts, one thing is sticking out more than anything else, the state of our mental health (and to be more specific, we have been fed a lie for so long it is difficult to fully believe that what we are doing is right).
    You have done exceptionally well in losing all that weight, so well done, that's the proof right there.
    Stop worrying, what will be, will be, none of us have any choice over that.
    Fear will kill you a thousand times, Death only once, so enjoy that which makes you happy (as long as it is morally and legally allowed that is).

    All the best, if this is wrong, you have done well on it.

    With regards to the Cholesterol thing, which I believe might currently be misunderstood, a high reading would suggest that a higher than normal amount of repair is going on internally and this Cholesterol is similar to the "scabbing" you would see on your skin after an injury, hence my comment on normal table salt.
    Anyway, what more can you do, if you have tried to follow a natural diet, what is there left to do.

    Good luck fellow sufferer, I would take what you are told with a pinch of salt (pun intended).

  6. Forky
    Hi Elizabeth,

    Have a wee read of my reply to BryanD, if you haven't already.
    How much of what is troubling you is stress?

    I think it is a complete scientific fact that if you eat Carbs you will need/or produce insulin.
    This insulin is what makes us fat.
    No carbs, no insulin, no fat, if you are taking tablets or Insulin to combat the effects of the carbs, then eating low carbs (don't rule out all carbs completely though, follow the diet prescribed on this site), will reduce the dependency you have on this medication.
    It's a process that will take time, but don't be scared of this, you are now on the path of the cure and not the disease (it probably took a long time to get yourself to this level of damage, luckily the repair doesn't take anywhere as long).
    Lots of protein in your diet can slow the process down, but won't stop it completely, just adds a bit of time.
    The above is what I have found out over the last two years since changing my mindset on diet.
    It sounds as though you are at the desperate point at which I found myself a few years ago.
    Those days are gone for me (despite the panic attacks that this all might be wrong, which it isn't, but the TV adverts are excellent at reinforcing the lie).

    Be strong and good luck.

  7. Forky
    A test for those so inclined.

    DISCLAIMER:
    I am probably mad and this should not be undertaken by anybody with health problems or without consultation of a qualified health care provider.

    OK, with that being said.
    So, I bought a blood glucose meter a few weeks back out of interest.
    I fasted for a day (only water consumed), on the second day 24 hours after the fasting started exactly, I gargled but did not swallow a solution of water and Manuka 20+ Honey (I thought if I am going to do it, I would use a good source of natural sugar).
    I allowed the solution to stay in my mouth for 30 seconds (timed), then down the sink with it and not swallowed.
    After one hour I tested my blood sugar and it went down significantly to 3.7 (from 4.8 ish with still no food or water consumed)

    Had I produced insulin (which dropped my normal level of blood sugar), this insulin being produced in expectation of the Sugary solution that should have been consumed?

    Would this suggest the Tongue actually starts the process of producing Insulin?
    If this is so, then logically, any sugary tasting substance will start the fat creation process (fake or natural sugar).

    I need to rule out absorption of the liquid through my gums, which I am working on.

    What this does conclusively prove is, I have far too much time on my hands.

    I just thought I would share this, further research required :-)
    (no animals other than myself were harmed in this experiment, although the dog did give me some funny looks).

  8. Tracy Ellington
    I can testify that this plan works. I lost 10 lbs before the latter year of holidays, last year, got in the way. I think I was on the LC diet for a few months. I have no excuse for going off the diet when I was tempted with candies, cookies, stuffings, etc but I'm ready to get back on the train, again! My weaknesses are bread, sweets and chips. I hope I can continue to be successful and learn to curb my appetites by substituting with better options. I'm not discouraged as I've learned a lot by reading all the great articles and testimonies on Diet Dr website. Keep up the good work, guys and gals! And I give words of encouragement to others who feel like it's not working, don't give up! Your health is worth it!!!
  9. 1 comment removed
  10. Desi
    Help! :( I'm feeling very daunted.
    I have never looked at my Macros before. Don't have a smartphone & have never used any kind of app before.
    It asked me to enter:
    Gender=female
    Current Weight=77kg
    Height=154cm (less than 5'1")
    Age=58yrs
    Activity Level=45-60min brisk walk when able 3-5 times per week.
    It told me to lose .5kg or 1lb a week I should only have 1200 cals a day & it would take 28months to get to my goal weight of 58kg.
    The formulation for each meal would be: 25g-31g Carbs - 45-56g Protein - 13-17f Fat.
    I've done the whole counting calories before & I didn't want to have to do it again. That's why Atkins & LCHF appealed to me. Counting calories is very time consuming & labour intensive.
    I don't want to be constantly having to calculate every serving. I'm not interested in creating gourmet meals. I eat to LIVE. Not live to EAT.
    Most of the time I just like to go to the cupboard or fridge & have the on meal on my plate in 20-30ins.
    Where can I find an easy NO FUSS LCFH meal plan.
    Reply: #4100
  11. michelle
    lynn
    from the comments
    i see that you are struggling to lose...
    big question
    are you drinking half your weight in water in ounces a day? if not
    then that could be your culprit
    get up first thing in the morning and drink 16 oz
    then on the hour and every hour after, drink 8 oz till about 2 hours before bedtime
    you should see a big difference with your efforts
    water is the main key to a low carb diet
    Replies: #4064, #4065
  12. Alison Mitchell
    Hi this is a message for Shelley Dunn in Israel. Have you looked at Marks Daily Apple website? He is the Author of Primal Blueprint and has just started a certified course that you may be interested in, it looks fantastic but quite expensive.
  13. Alison Mitchell
    Hi this is a message for Shelley Dunn (4030) in Israel. Have you looked at Marks Daily Apple website? He is the Author of Primal Blueprint and has just started a certified course that you may be interested in, it looks fantastic but quite expensive.
  14. Desi
    Hi Michelle - Ever heard of Hyponatremia (aka Water Intoxication).
    Well that's when you have TOO much water & our sodium level drops too low.
    Hyponatremai can cause many problems & severe Hyponatremia can lead to Coma & can even be Fatal.
    I know you meant well. But I would be hesitant before advising people to drink 1/2 their weight in water.
    1.5 - 2 litres is more than adequate for most people.
  15. Desi
    Ooops.
    Sorry Michele I thought you literally mean half your body weight in water, not convert it to oz.
    My mistake, guess I've still got a lot to learn.
    Desi
  16. 1 comment removed
  17. Big Mac
    I've been on this diet (lifestyle) for just about 3 months. I've lost 38 lbs. My cholesterol has dramatically dropped over a hundred points. I sleep better and wake up feeling much much better. I have more sustained energy through out the day as well. I'm quite strict with it, but have recently started to eat fruit. I must state that I have used the similar Atkins diet as well a few years ago. With much the same results. I'm a carb-O-halic by the way. I only have another 30 lbs. to go. Should be there in a few more months. It's also my experience that if you are not losing at least 7 lbs a month then either you aren't doing it correctly or there's something else wrong. I've had friends doing this more strict than myself and losing as much as 18 lbs. a month. If you need to then count the carbs people. 20 or less a day for the first 2 weeks and get things moving. Then add a few more here and there, but keep the carbs under 40 a day until your desired weight. Remember, use your cheat day as a reward and not an excuse to fail. Any way, I have many friends now changing their lifestyle to eat more healthy and live better. They all report to have lowered cholesterol and bp. It's not easy, but well worth the effort!
    Reply: #4069
  18. Desi
    Hi All:
    I'm celebrating! Am now down 7.5kg (15.6lbs) & nearly 2 sizes.
    I'm now finding that I'm thinking less & less about what to eat as it's becoming 2nd nature.
    I find that even though I'm still walking the dog the same way. It now takes me 45mins instead of an hour.
  19. Desi
    Hey Big Mac:
    Would you please share a typical days menu with us.
    It would be helpful especially for those only just starting.
    Desi
  20. 1 comment removed
  21. MikeL
    hi

    I'm type 2 diabetic and in statins for cholesterol. I understand the thinking behind lchf for blood sugar and weight loss but can someone point me towards some answers/research for the effects on cholesterol? Also, if like me you are type 2 and high cholesterol should you be much stricter to start with?

    Thanks in advance

    Reply: #4077
  22. Judy
    Have been following LCHF for two months now. As a former carb addict who followed the old "good carbs" low fat regime to obesity, I want to thank you for changing my life. Once a runner and avid athlete, my life changed with knee surgeries and more importanly serious heart problems that curtailed athletic activity to a "15 minute gentle walk" a day. Doctors encouraged me to continue the traditional low-fat high-complex almost vegetarian diet I had been following but cut the calories. I was hungry all the time! The pounds piled on. I was plagued with headaches, muscle and joint pain, and I slept very little. I developed congestive heart failure, required two ablations and a bi-ventricular assist implant. In the past sixty days I have dropped two dress sizes, friends are stunned when they see me, and my headaches and joint pain are gone. I am no longerr loading up on nsaids to make it through the day. And, thanks be to God, I am sleeping seven hours a night with no breathing problems or major rounds of heart arrhythmia as in the past. My life has changed so much that I will never go back. I follow LCHF strictly and it has gotten easy, even around my "vegetarian" friends who load up on sugar and carbs and tell me I am killing myself. Killing myself? I can actually smile and just say, "Look at me. Just look at me." I am now full of hope that I will live to see my grandchildren grown.
  23. Karolina B
    There is a new cook book in France really nice about LCHF. It's Ceto cuisine, author Magali Walkowicz, with french receipes. I think it's interesting for all adepts because it's really différent of other cook books.
  24. Mellie
    I must admit havent done my research....but wasn't the life span much lower than it is now....just saying...
  25. Rose
    Mellie
    Lifespans were much shorter because there were no antibiotics or antiseptics - the average age of death was much lower because people died from wound infections, in childbirth, influenza and things like scarlet fever. People who survived these were far fewer but did live to old age.
  26. Lynn
    I see you say that to eat only when we are hungry. I have a nearly non existent metabolism because i have an under active thyroid and taking medication for it thyroxine. I am overweight and wish to lose about 10kgs. Would love to try the LCHF
  27. LesterB
    Hi Mikel.

    hiI'm type 2 diabetic and in statins for cholesterol. I understand the thinking behind lchf for blood sugar and weight loss but can someone point me towards some answers/research for the effects on cholesterol? Also, if like me you are type 2 and high cholesterol should you be much stricter to start with?Thanks in advance

    I have attended several presentations by doctors & blood specialists on the topic of Cholesterol & LCHF. This one in particular by Dr ken Sikaris (one of the Head Scientists at Melbourne Pathology in Australia) helped clear up my understanding around LDL/HDL/TRigs...
    http://youtu.be/9BFRi-nH1v8
    I was there in August last year when this presentation was made.

    Also, on the Type 1 & Type 2 Diabetics fron & LCHF, see this by Dr Troy Stapleton(a T1) , also in Australia & at the same conference held last year. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZSrOC5m_RZY

    The conference was one of several being hosted by http://www.lowcarbdownunder.com.au/
    and Ive been to two of them...

    Kind Regards and best wishes for your health outcomes......
    Lester

  28. highfatRN
    Hi there, I started (again) LCHF eating on April 1st. Have not weighed myself in a few months. Clothes are feeling tighter, feeling a bit bloated, feel I am gaining instead of losing at this point. It has only been 8 days, I realize it will take some time to become "adapted". I know I snack out of boredom or habit rather than hunger. Most of my intake is in the evening (I am really not hungry during the day). I am afraid to get discouraged once again. Anyone else experience weight gain or bloating at the beginning? If so how long until the extra lbs melt off? Should I eat less fat?
    Stats:
    Female 47 5'7" 215lbs (at last check 2 a month ago)
    CHO 125g daily
    est calories 2000-2200 (80% or greater fat)
    exercise minimal
    Reply: #4079
  29. Enderlyn
    < CHO 125g daily est calories 2000-2200 (80% or greater fat) exercise minim

    This is for highfatRN:

    If I understand correctly, your carb intake is 125g daily. This is way too much, and that is why you are gaining weight. Keep your carb intake around 30g daily, and note the difference. I hope this helps.

  30. AH
    I have been on this diet since the 1st of January, I have lost 16lbs, would loose more if I was strict, but I cant resist the odd cheat, went to the gym today for the first time in a long time, I felt to heavy before, I have read many comments for encouragement, I don't look at the calories, I buy what is on the beginners shopping list, my craving for chocolate ( not dark ) which started about a month into the LCHF diet leads to the odd cake or snicker but this is infrequent, about once or twice a week, I tend to do this if I eat out and have had a really nice chicken salad with pomegranates and think well if I had eaten something really bad first then that would be worse so I don't feel bad about it, I sometimes come back to the site to get back on track, I wish you all luck.
  31. Desi
    Yay down another 500grams, that's 1.1lbs.
    Now down more than 7.6kg, that's 16.7lbs.
    I say more than. Because I didn't know how heavy I was when I began. I only started to weigh myself 1 month after I started this LCHF lifestyle.
    I love this WOE.
  32. AH
    Hi All,
    Have you any suggestions as to a low carb chocolate flavoured bar that may satisfy my chocolate craving, that I can grab on the go, I don't trust myself buying chocolate in when I do my weekly shop as if it's there I'll eat it, so when I nip in a shop in desperation after work on a bad day instead of a snicker what could I grab?
    Oh and my trip to the gym did wonders I have lost 1lb and feel energised, I will try to go every Saturday morning.
  33. Anne
    Hi Lynn
    Like yourself I am also on thyroxine 175mg daily.... I started this healthy low carb eating plan as I was tired of being tired and bloated so 6 days ago I started and currently 5lb down I make sure I drink plenty of water daily as I previously had kidney stones and do not want them back lol...plus I know I will increase my chances of weight loss, better complexion less munchy you.... I also use the app My Fitness Pal which I have on my mobile which allows me to scan all food/drinks before I consume allowing me to quickly learn what is good for me. Lynn you can do this plan and it does work I have decided that this is a lifestyle choice not a fad diet to try for a few weeks hence why I call it a healthy eating plan, I am really beginning to feel the benefits and it has opened my eyes to how much sugar/carbs I have been eating over the years. Give it a go Lynn I think you'll enjoy the benefits... Good luck!
  34. Randy
    Hey, hello and look forward to all the comments. I've been eating low carb since Jan 2015 and started LCHF in Feb 2015. my weight Jan 1 was 288 now on April 12th its 261. my concern is this it seemed that my loss has slowed when i started to follow a App called myfittnesspal. I keep track of my fat protein and carbs. I don't care much for the calorie it shows me because i don't want to count them. I try to stay in a 70/25/5. I am concerned about the sugar in the vegs on the list. would that sugar keep me from losing?, should I count the carbs or anything or just consume fat? it seems that since feb my loss has been slow, I don't eat anything that in a box, it's all fresh. I cut of liquid dairy and just use cheese. ( no sour cream or yoguart, cream cheese) From a keto calculator it said for my height and weight I should have 191 g fat. 114 g protein and 29 g of carb. I've tried not to meet the protein and carb goals because of the stall because i wanted to see if either was causing me to stall and not lose. I've only lost an inch off my waist so far and hoping for more. So whats with the sugar in veggies and over all am i still counting calories just in the form of carbs ( follow the list)
    Reply: #4092
  35. Desi
    Reply to AH,
    Stay away from the Chocolate.
    If you stick to the eating plan you will find that your cravings will disappear in only a few days.
    Be very strict for only a few days & you won't be wanting chocolate.
    Increase your protein intake until that happens.
    Hope this helps. Hang in there you can do this.
    Desi
  36. Claire
    I have followed a LC HF and protein diet for 2 years, and have lost an incredible amount of weight. I noticed I started to put weight on, I train 5 times a week, intensity hadn't dropped, but I had started to become complacent in what I was eating. I then read an article on Marks daily apple about tracking macros. I saw your comment, Desi, about tracking and yes it is time consuming but it's also a really good pointer to keep you on track. I know what my numbers are and at the moment I'm tracking religiously, once weight is back down, I will track maybe once a week. All plans need some structure, for me anyway.
    A note to Randy, maybe you aren't eating enough. Again, track your calories just for a few days. To give you an idea, I am 80kg, have 1980 cals a day with a split of 40/40/20. Don't sacrifice health over weight, you need your veggies and you need to eat the numbers, otherwise the body goes into fat store mode. Also, you have dropped a lot of weight quickly, it will be evening out now. Throw in some exercise, a brisk 40 min walk, go to the gym and lift weights and track. It will start moving again.

    This may also help with those suffering with cholesterol as it keeps a check on how much fat you are actually eating, not just what you think you are. Good luck everyone xx

    Reply: #4087
  37. Desi
    Thanks Claire.
  38. ashley
    Hi everyone Ive just started the lchf diet , im hoping I can loose about 2-3 stone , ive gone cold turkey & cut out all sugar completely as I read that was the best thing to do ,im quite proud of my self as I love two heaped teaspoons of sugar in my tea , I love bread , pasta ,chocolate,crisps anything thats bad for yoy basically ,I would really appreciate some recipes (uk) , for breakfast I have eggs 2-3 with grilled bacon , snack 2 boiled eggs and for tea tonight im having fish with veg (broccoli,cauliflower&cabbage) , im having coffee with full fat milk ,ive changed my margarine to butter , im drinking lots of water. I feel like my mind has gone blank for meal ideas I suppose its getting out of old habits and catering for two small children & husband whome are just eating there last easter eggs right infront of me right now (I could cry) , any ideas, hints ,tips advice would be really appreciated
    thankyou :-) x
    Reply: #4090
  39. ashley
    Can you use tinned tomatoes and passata ??
  40. angela
    Ashley - I have a similar issue in that I also have to prepare meals for my husband and two small children. Primarily for myself I just try to advance prep by grilling chicken to eat with veggies and olives. Or I cook a roast and use the leftovers to make frittata's (minus the potatoes). But my absolute favorite thing to make is a cream sauce (with heavy cream and butter) that I eat over chicken and sautéed spinach and mushrooms.......while my family eats it over pasta. There are lots of possibilities without restricting yourself to eating only bacon, eggs and cheese!! Good Luck!!!
    Reply: #4091
  41. ashley
    Thanks angela ill give those a try :-) x fingers crossed I can shift these pounds even though being so strict is killing me ive defo got the will power to see this through x
  42. Tiffany
    Hey Randy. First let me just say that I'm so sorry. I was trying to reply and accidently reported your comment as inappropriate so I'm hoping that whoever is monitoring this board will fix it for me. I tried to fix it myself without any success.....

    I've done the Atkins diet in the past with great success. I'm getting ready to do it again. The LCHF diet is exactly the same from my experience. I know why you are not losing. If I understood what you said, you are trying to stay away from protein, or keep it down. That is exactly why you aren't losing. You need to increase your protein, namely animal protein. That is also where the high fat of this diet comes from.... animal fat. In fact, you can eat all the meat you want (without breading). The more meat protein you eat and the less carb intake, the greater the weight loss. That is why the person who wrote the article above said that zero carbs is better. But, you have to eat the fat/protein in order to lose.... That always worked for me when I did this diet ten years ago and lost 70 lbs. Hope this helps. Good luck!

  43. IrinaA
    For BrianD and all those who have concern about cholesterole levels please watch YouTube, Professor Robert. H. Lustig lecture titled Sugar: The Hidden Truth where he explains and demonstrates the biochemical reactions including cholesterol works in our bodies, breaking down LDL cholesteroles into two types and analyzing ratios of one of the bad LDL (another LDL causes no harm!) and triglycerides. This is the ratio to watch for. I totally agree with recommendation of forgetting doctors concerns about cholesterol for now and giving your body time to adjust itself. BrianD should actually be happy as he is on the right track as evidenced by his weight loss and lower triglycerides levels. Congratulations! Keep the good work! Reply to #4051& adding to #4055
  44. mistressjennie
    does anybody have any kind of sample menu they could share? or point me in the right direction of finding one?
    it would be greatly appreciated ... I am over here starving my myself because I truly do not know what to eat :(
    Thank you
    Jenn
  45. Lisa Logue
    Brian D
    You may be eating too much red meat and this keeping your cholesterol high. I watched a Michael Moseley program where he said that it is the L-carnitine in red meat that raises cholesterol and increases stroke and heart attack risk, not fat. So perhaps cutting down on red meat and increasing poultry and fish would allow you to maintain the benefits of the LCHF diet and allow your cholesterol to fall - worth a try.
  46. AH
    Hi Desi,
    Thanks for your advise last week it helped, I have stayed off the chocolate, however yesterday had family round so bought mixed seed bars with carob, and cut them into bite sized pieces and handed them round with strawberries and cream after a choice of chicken or salmon kebabs on sticks with peppers and shallots, I made a salad didn't know how it would go down with the men in the family, as some have big appetites but was pleasantly surprised as they all enjoyed it even the grand kids. must admit I had a couple of slices of the 9 bar as it is called (seed and carob,) my daughter told me these bars are healthy but the carbohydrates and sugar content per 100 grams seems a little high however each bar is 40 grams and cut each bar into 3 pieces.
    Reply: #4097
  47. Desi
    Hi AH,
    Pleased things are going well for you.
    Not a bit surprised the men in your family enjoyed the salad.
    I had lumberjacks in my family & they all enjoyed a good feed. They would all eat a salad as long as it has plenty of protein in it to keep them satisfied.
    As for the 9 Seed Bar. It's full of sugar! stay away from anything where the sugar is among the 1st ingredients listed.
    I stay away from snack foods.
  48. Vasilevski
    What about the pork lard? Is it any good? Because in my family we keep at least 3 pigs, organically feed and eat them mostly in winter days. Sometimes we use the lard instead of veg. oil, like our ancestors used to.
    Reply: #4099
  49. Desi
    Hi Vasilevski,
    When following a LCHF diet it is recommended that you eat Pork Lard, Beef Dripping, Butter, Coconut Oil & Ghee.
    It is advised to use these INSTEAD OF vegetable oil.
  50. Ben
    Desi,

    In response to your question below re: LCHF food plans, I suggest you joing Facebook and search for low carb high fat groups. There are a number of them. They are quite active and full of people who provide meal advice. This diet (really a way of eating) realy, really works. I've been on it two weeks and have lost eight pounds and one pants size. Best part is I'm not having to exercise, not hungry, and enjoying my food.

    - B

    Help! I'm feeling very daunted.I have never looked at my Macros before. Don't have a smartphone & have never used any kind of app before.It asked me to enter:Gender=femaleCurrent Weight=77kgHeight=154cm (less than 5'1")Age=58yrsActivity Level=45-60min brisk walk when able 3-5 times per week.It told me to lose .5kg or 1lb a week I should only have 1200 cals a day & it would take 28months to get to my goal weight of 58kg.The formulation for each meal would be: 25g-31g Carbs - 45-56g Protein - 13-17f Fat.I've done the whole counting calories before & I didn't want to have to do it again. That's why Atkins & LCHF appealed to me. Counting calories is very time consuming & labour intensive.I don't want to be constantly having to calculate every serving. I'm not interested in creating gourmet meals. I eat to LIVE. Not live to EAT.Most of the time I just like to go to the cupboard or fridge & have the on meal on my plate in 20-30ins.Where can I find an easy NO FUSS LCFH meal plan.

    Reply: #4102

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