What is Low Carb Diet and How Can it Help You Lose Weight?

A low-carb diet is a dietary approach that limits the intake of carbohydrates, such as those found in grains, starchy vegetables, and fruits, and emphasizes foods high in protein and fat. There is no official definition for a low-carb or low-carb diet, but it typically involves reducing total carbohydrate intake to activate fat burning processes, known as dietary ketosis. This activity will review the evidence and effectiveness of low-carb approaches in clinical medicine for an interprofessional team to consult patients who could benefit from such a dietary strategy. Low-carb diets are a popular weight-loss strategy.

While all low-carb approaches reduce total carbohydrate intake, there is no clear consensus on what defines a low-carb diet. Studies have defined low carbohydrate levels as a percentage of daily macronutrient intake or total daily carbohydrate load. Very low-carb diets contain less than 10% of the calories from carbohydrates, or 20 to 50 g of carbohydrates per day (80 to 100 calories). When following a traditional low-carb diet, you would normally eat foods such as meat, fish, eggs, nuts, seeds, non-starchy vegetables, and some dairy products.

You would avoid grains, starchy vegetables, fruits, and sugary foods. Low-carb diets can help you lose weight because they suppress appetite and activate fat burning processes. Beyond the mostly transient side effects that can occur on a low-carb diet (such as constipation, bad breath, and fatigue), there are many controversies and misunderstandings about this dietary approach. Most advertised low-carb diets recommend limiting carbohydrate intake well below government recommended guidelines.

An extremely low-carb eating plan causes the body to enter a metabolic state known as ketosis, which occurs when the body burns stored fat for energy and can lead to weight loss. Another hypothesis holds that low-carb diets can produce greater metabolic burn than high-carb diets. Many low-carb diets are also richer in protein compared to what most people are used to eating. Low carb may help calm a grumpy bowel and often reduce symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome, such as bloating, gas, diarrhea, cramps, and pain. Before you change your diet, it's helpful to gather vital information, such as the amount of carbohydrates you need and the best options for getting healthy carbohydrates. Whether you're looking for strict, moderate, or liberal low-carb recipes, there are many delicious options to choose from.

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