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Should You Go On A Low Carb Diet to Lose Weight?

By definition, a low carb diet means limiting one’s intake of carbohydrates. This is usually found in grains, starchy vegetables and fruits. The diet also emphasizes the importance of eating foods that are high in protein and fat.

There are plenty of low carb recipes and diets that can help you achieve your fitspiration goals. Each diet has varying restrictions on the types and amounts of carbohydrates that you can eat.

A low carb diet is usually used for weight loss. Some diets may also have health benefits beyond weight loss like reducing the risk factors associated with diabetes and metabolic syndrome.
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Different people have different reasons why they choose to go on a low carb diet. Some may want a diet that restricts certain carbs to help them lose weight. Some want to change their overall eating habits while others just enjoy the types and amounts of foods found in low carb diets.
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A lot of carbohydrates occur naturally in plant-based foods like grains. Carbs are considered complex and fibrous in their natural form like those found in whole grains and legumes. They can also be less complex such as those found in milk and fruit. Common sources of naturally occurring carbohydrates are: grains, fruits, vegetables, milk, nuts, seeds, legumes (beans, lentils, peas). Meanwhile, simple carbohydrates are found in processed foods with flour or sugar like white breads and pasta, cookies, cake, candy, and sugar-sweetened sodas and drinks. The human body uses carbohydrates as its main fuel source. Sugars and starches are broken down into simple sugars during digestion which are then absorbed into the bloodstream and become known as blood sugar (glucose). Fiber-containing carbohydrates resist digestion. They have less effect on blood sugar and provide bulk to serve other body functions aside from fuel.

Basically, the idea behind low carb diets is to decrease carbs to lower insulin levels. This then leads the body to burn stored fat for energy which leads to weight loss. A low carb diet typically focuses on proteins like meat, poultry, fish and eggs as well as some nonstarchy vegetables. It also excludes or limits most grains, legumes, fruits, breads, sweets, pastas and starchy vegetables. Aside from faster weight loss, low carb diets have been said to provide other benefits like reduced hunger, better insulin and blood sugar levels, enhanced cognitive performance, lower risk for heart disease factors and reduced risk for certain types of cancer.

Bread lovers who want to go on a low carb diet can still eat their favorite food without letting go of their weight loss goals. They can look for low carb bread recipes online. One particular low carb gluten free bread recipe uses almond flour, psyllium husk powder, gluten-free baking powder, sea salt, eggs, coconut oil and warm water. After preheating the oven to 350 degrees F and lining the bottom of a 9×5 loaf pan with parchment paper, you just need to stir the dry ingredients together. Add the eggs, melted coconut oil, and the warm water. Transfer the batter to the lined baking pan and bake for 50 to 60 minutes.

Sweet-toothed dieters can also made their own low carb homemade ice cream. One recipe removes the need for churning for those who do not own an ice cream machine. Furthermore, it just needs four ingredients and takes about five minutes to prepare. All you need is butter, heavy cream, powdered erythritol, and vanilla extract. First, melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat then add half of the heavy cream and powdered erythritol. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer for 30-45 minutes. Stir occasionally until the mixture is thick enough. Pour mixture into a large bowl and let it cool to room temperature. Mix the vanilla extract while stirring. Using a hand mixer, beat the remaining 2 cups of heavy cream for about 2-3 minutes until stiff peaks form. Gently and slowly fold the beaten heavy cream into the mixture in the bowl. Transfer the mixture to a freezer container. If you want another flavor, you can add mix-ins at this stage. Freeze the mixture for 5-6 hours until firm.