Are bread, potatoes, rice and pasta a big part of your life? Do you think it would be hard to cut down?
The good news is it’s not as difficult as you might think. Keep reading to find out our 5 simple tricks to help you eat less carbs…
Carbohydrates - commonly known as “carbs” - are sugars, starches and fibres found in various types of food, which are turned into energy when we digest them.
They are present in food considered to be unhealthy, such as pastries, white bread, fizzy drinks and highly-processed food.
“Complex carbohydrates”, meanwhile, which release energy more slowly into the system, are found in healthier foods such as starchy vegetables including potatoes, whole grains, beans and pulses. Complex carbs usually also contain other essential nutrients.
Low-carb diets generally involve eliminating or limiting most grains, pulses, bread, pasta, starchy vegetables, sweets, cakes and biscuits.
Instead they focus on high-protein, higher-fat foods like meat, fish and eggs as well as non-starchy vegetables such as broccoli, spinach or peppers.
Can a carbohydrate free diet help with weight loss?
When we eat carbs, the body breaks it down into sugars, which enter the blood. As blood sugar levels rise, the hormone insulin is produced, which tells the body to absorb the sugar for energy or storage.
A low-carb diet is often used to help with weight loss because by lowering the carb intake, insulin levels go down and the body burns the fat that it had stored for energy.
5 tricks to eat less carbs
Starting a new diet with low-carb foods can seem like a big lifestyle change. Here are five simple tricks to help you on your way:
Respect the humble egg
Low-carb breakfasts, without bread or cereal, can feel like quite a challenge. Eggs are versatile, fast and easy to cook, and are packed with protein that will curb hunger pangs.
Make lots of soups
They are filling, satisfying and you can enjoy a variety of flavours with the non-starchy vegetables available in a low-carb lifestyle.
Find tasty alternatives
Grate cauliflower as an alternative to rice, or mash it as a potato replacement. It's also popular to “spiralize” vegetables like courgettes or squash, turning them into noodle-shaped strips to use instead of spaghetti or noodles.
Make your meals super
Make sure you're getting plenty of nutrients and energy by incorporating low-carb superfoods into your diet. Berries, almonds, seeds like chia and flax or nutrient-dense, edible algae Spirulina can be added to meals or smoothies.
Choose snacks wisely
With just a little planning you can stave off temptation with filling and healthy low-carb snacks. Try slices of hard-boiled egg, a handful of almonds or some cubes of cheese.