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Practicing a Carb-Free Diet? 5 Healthy Alternatives to Carbohydrates

Sep 15, 2010

A carb-free diet is not just a fad. There are many reasons why you should practice this type of diet. Carbohydrates are considered the main source of energy for your body, and they make up a large portion of many people’s diets. However, some carbohydrates can be detrimental to your health if they are consumed in excess, and they can contribute to health problems such as obesity, diabetes, hypertension and others.

Benefits of a Carb-Free Diet

If you go on a carb-free diet, you will not only lower the risks of the abovementioned illnesses, but you will also experience better overall health, improved mental concentration and stability, and better dental hygiene. There is also a possibility that this kind of diet can improve the appearance of your skin, reduce muscle and joint pain, control headaches and prevent gastrointestinal problems, such as heartburn. A low-carb or carb-free diet is especially effective in helping you lose weight, because it can suppress your cravings for sweets and help you overcome emotional eating.

You will be pleasantly surprised to know that there are many carbohydrate alternatives that taste similar to high-carbohydrate foods. Therefore, you can be assured that you will not run out of delicious foods to eat when you are on a carb-free diet. Here is a list of healthy alternatives to carbohydrates.

1. Meats, Fish, Eggs and Shellfish

These non-vegetarian foods contain practically zero carbohydrate, and they are excellent choices for a carb-free diet. However, you should not consume processed meats, because these meats are mostly cured with sugar. You should also refrain from eating meat and fish that are cured with nitrates, because such foods are known to contain carcinogens.

2. Low-Carb Bread

When you are on a low-carb diet, you are not allowed to eat starchy foods that are made with white flour, such as bread and pasta. Still, you can get a taste of bread by purchasing special low-carb breads from Atkin’s and Joseph’s. These breads have no cholesterol at all, and they provide healthy ingredients such as oat bran, whole wheat and flax, which can promote weight loss and prevent heart illnesses.

3. Vegetables

Spinach, lettuce, celery, cucumber, peppers and mushrooms are some of the most nutritious low-carb natural foods. They are excellent sources of fiber, and they have high amounts of phytonutrients that can benefit your health in many ways. Broccoli and tomatoes are low-carb foods that are known for their abilities to combat cancer. They also contain lots of vitamins and minerals that can contribute to overall health.  In one serving of green peas or snow peas, you will only get 10 grams of carbohydrates. These peas’ high fiber content and great flavor make them an excellent choice of food for a low-carb diet.

4. Low-Carb Cheeses

Some of the cheeses that you can include in your carb-free diet are cheddar cheese, mozzarella, Gouda cheese, Swiss cheese and goat cheese. It is recommended that you consume no more than 3 to 4 ounces of these cheeses everyday.

5. Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is another excellent low-carb food. It can stimulate metabolism and help you lose weight if it is consumed on a daily basis.

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