Posts Tagged ‘Low Carb Diet’

Low Carb Desserts

When it comes to dieting sweet desserts are usually off the menu. Most of us have a sweet tooth, so to be able to finish a meal with a delicious low carb dessert can make all the difference in sticking to any diet.

Many of us like to finish off a meal with fruit. However, it is worth checking the carbohydrates in fruit beforehand as some fruits can be very high in carbohydrates and are not included in some low carb diets. Low carb fruits such as apples, pears and peaches can make a refreshing dessert.

For those who do not have the time to prepare homemade low carb desserts, there are now available many ready to prepare packets of low carb low sugar desserts. These include low carb muffins and low carb cookies. For those who wish to make their own low carb desserts I have chosen 3 popular and fairly simple low carb recipes to make.

One of the most popular dessert is ice cream. It is a dessert that can be made and have in the freezer any time you want it. Low carb ice cream is just as delicious as any other ice cream and can be eaten by the whole family.

Vanilla ice cream

Ingredients:

5 egg yolks
1 cup of splender
3 teaspoons of no-sugar vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups heavy or double cream, whipped
1 cup water

Place egg yolks, vanilla extract, water and sweetener in a blender. Blend together on medium for 30 seconds. Fold the mixture into the whipped cream being careful not to over blend. Pour into a refrigerator tray and freeze for 2 hours.

Makes 8 1/2 servings.
4 net grams of carbohydrates per serving.

Chocolate is a definite no on a low carb diet, but you can satisfy your need for chocolate with this low carb dessert recipe for chocolate mousse.

Chocolate Mousse

Ingredients:

2/3 cup Splender
4 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa
1 pint of heavy or double cream
1/2 Tbsp vanilla extract

Put all the ingredients in a mixing bowl and mix until stiff with an electric blender. Spoon into 4 small dishes or ramekins. Serve immediately or chill until later. Top with sweetener and whipped cream if wanted.

Makes 4 servings
8.1 net grams of carbohydrate per serving

And finally, one all round favorite has to be a cheesecake. Low carb New York ricotta cheesecake not only makes a delicious low carb dessert but a very filling dessert that is also great if you are having guests and still want to stick to your low carb diet.

New York Ricotta Cheesecake

Ingredients:

24 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 cup extra fine whole milk ricotta cheese. This can be refined using a food processor for 1 minute.
1/2 cup sour cream
1 1/2 cups splender
1/3 cup heavy or double cream
1 Tbsp no sugar added vanilla extract
1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 eggs
3 egg yolks
1 8 inch springform cake tin

Preheat oven to 400F
First you need to prepare your springform tin.Spray the tin with non-stick cooking spray and set aside. Using a shallow roasting tin big enough to hold the tin, fill about 1 inch of water and place the tray on the center shelf of the oven to pre-heat.

In a bowl beat together the cream cheese, ricotta, sour cream, and sweetener for about one minute using an electric mixer.

In a separate bowl, using a wire whisk mix the heavy cream, vanilla, lemon juice, eggs and egg yolks until well blended.

Turn the mixer onto a medium speed and slowly pour the egg mixture into the cream cheese mixture. Mix until just blended, being careful not to over-whip.

Pour the mixture into the springform tin and place into the heated roasting tin water bath.

Bake for 15 minutes and then lower the oven temperature to 275F and bake for 1 1/2 hours. The top should be a light golden brown and the cake should be pulling away from the sides.

Turn the oven off and leave the cake to cool in the oven for about 3 hours. Then remove the cake and refrigerate before serving.

Serves 12

These are just three very popular low carb dessert recipes. Once you get to grips with what are carbohydrates and how you can make very low carbohydrate meals, you can start to be very inventive with your low carb desserts. There are many free online low carb recipes available to suit the type of low carb diet you choose.

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Low Carbohydrates Food List

One thing I learned when researching the recipes for breakfast, lunch and dinner is that it is best not to put all carbs together. It is much better to list the ‘good’ carbs and the ‘bad’ carbs separately. Good carbs do not cause the sudden rise in blood sugar levels that bad ones do. These complex carbohydrates will make you feel fuller for longer and less likely to have an energy high followed by a rapid energy low.

Foods on the list will mostly be complex carbohydrates or good carbs. Good carbs are foods that are unrefined and close to their natural state. Bad carbs or simple carbohydrates are foods that have been very refined such as white bread, sugary foods, white rice and pasta. There are of course some foods which fall somewhere in between.

When embarking on a low-carb diet to loose stomach fat, the majority of your foods should be in the form of non starchy vegetables and salad greens. Non-starchy vegetables are low in calories while containing a wealth of nutrients like antioxidants and fibre. The following list of vegetables are considered a very good low carb choice: artichokes, alfalfa sprouts, asparagus, bean sprouts, bamboo shoots, bell peppers, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, celery, chard, cucumber, eggplant, green beans, kale, leeks, lettuce, mushrooms, onions, radishes, snow peas, spinach, summer squash, tomato and zucchini. Non-starchy vegetables such as these will also help as an appetite suppressant as they keep you full for longer.

Eating fruit needs to be limited as some fruits contain fairly high levels of simple carbohydrates or bad carbs. Fruits, which have the lowest carb count, are: apples, apricots, blackberries, blueberries, cantaloupe, cranberries, grapefruit, guava, peaches, raspberries, rhubarb and strawberries. Depending on the type of low-carb diet your on, some of these fruits may not be allowed. Always check with the diet you have selected before choosing your foods.

All meats are low in carbs apart from offal and organ meats such as liver. Animal products are high in protein and low in carbohydrates. Red meat is low carb, which includes, beef, pork and lamb. Eggs, seafood and poultry are low carb as long as no other carbs are added in the cooking process. As these foods are all protein based they are a vital part of a low-carb diet. Processed meats such as sausages and ham may contain added carbohydrates and so should be avoided or only be eaten occasionally.

One ingredient that needs to be limited due to its sugar content is milk. Since many people suffer with lactose intolerance, substituting cows milk with soya milk as a good alternative because it is lower in sugar than cows milk. However cheese and some other dairy products are allowed such as butter. Cheese is a good source of calcium and protein in the diet and very useful if on a low carb diet. Eggs in particular top the list of low carb high protein foods. They make a quick breakfast, lunch or dinner and are very versatile.

Foods made from soybeans are also low in carbohydrates. Soy foods are high in phytoestrogens, a naturally occurring estrogen. They are also rich in plant based protein, calcium and vitamins A and D. As well as substituting milk with soya, foods such as tofu, tempeh and soya ice cream are all low carb. Make sure the product you are buying is unsweetened as this can increase the carb value.

And finally on the list are fats. To be able to eat fats while on a weight loss diet seems to go against all previous advice. Fats are carb free, but if using fats be sure to use the healthy, unsaturated ones. Unsaturated fats include the monounsaturated and polyunsaturated varieties. These fats contain antioxidants that can help the body work more efficiently. Choose plant-based fats such as canola, sunflower, olive and peanut oils.

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Low Carb Dinner Recipes

If you’re like me then dinner will probably be your main meal of the day. So For this reason it needs to be satisfying and nutritious. Being on a low carbohydrates diet doesn’t mean that your dinner needs to be any different and we can incorporate many belly fat burning foods.

Once you’ve got to grips with the foods that you can and cannot eat on a low carb diet, you will see that most main meals can be adapted in some way to be made low carb. If you are going to stick to any diet it is important that you enjoy the food you eat and have plenty of variety to stop becoming bored. Here I have made some dinner suggestions to do just that.

When embarking on a low carb diet it is well worth stocking up on a few staple foods first, so that you are never without the right foods. This includes flavorings such as herbs and spices, olive oil, eggs, no-sugar added oil and vinegar dressing and cheeses. A good selection of low carb vegetables in the freezer such as spinach, green beans and diced onion will ensure you always have an accompaniment for your dinner dish.

Depending on the type of diet you are on, some diets allow wholemeal bread, brown rice, wholemeal pita bread and whole meal tortillas. These ingredients can be very useful to add to your meal. These are what are known as complex carbs or good carbs as opposed to simple carbohydrates, which are the bad carbs.

Some low carb diets promote high protein, low carb foods, while others talk about low fat, low carb foods. Whichever type of diet you are following the main bulk of your foods will come from, meat, fish, shell fish, non-starchy vegetables, salad vegetables and some dairy foods. It is surprising just how little you will not be allowed on a low carb diet. If opting for a low fat, low carb diet, then low fat cheeses and very lean meat should be chosen instead of their full fat options.

If wanting a starter with your low carb dinner, making a salad of tomatoes and mozzarella cheese makes a light and tasty starter. If your having a dinner party this can be made to look very impressive by making a tomato and mozzarella tower. Simply place some salad leaves on a plate and alternate slices of tomato drizzled with olive oil with slices of mozzarella. Add some basil leaves for extra flavor.

Another great starter for your diet is soup. Most ready prepared soups are not low carb, but making your own is very simple. A good base for homemade soup is chicken stock made from your left over chicken bones. Place in a pan and cover with water, bring to the boil and simmer for at least 30 minutes, longer if you have time. You can then add to this any combination of low carb vegetables as you like. Mushrooms, peppers and onions make a very satisfying soup.

For the main course of your dinner, meat will probably become the main staple of your diet. If you look at your favorite dishes you will see that many of them can be adapted to suit your diet.

For instance the Sunday roast. You would probably include in your roast dinner, roast meat, potatoes, carrots, green vegetables, cauliflower cheese etc. When cooking a low carb version, the only ingredients you would leave out are the potatoes and the cheese sauce. By adding extra green vegetables and grating some strong cheddar cheese on the cauliflower before grilling it, your meal is much the same as everyone else’s.

Many people assume that being on a low carb diet means no dessert. It can be difficult as ingredients such as sugar and chocolate are off the list. But yet again many recipes can be adjusted to replace sugar with a sweetener or no sugar alternatives. Sugar free jelly is a good stand-by when you fancy something sweet. Low carb cheesecake is a very substantial dinner dessert. But if you want something quick and simple to make, here is 2 deliciously sweet desserts that I have tried.

Strawberry Pecan Whip:

Ingredients:

125g sugar free, low calorie strawberry jelly
225ml boiling water
225ml cold water 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
2 tablespoons pecan pieces, toasted
50ml semi-skimmed ricotta cheese

Method:

Dissolve the jelly in the boiling water, stirring until completely dissolved. Add the cold water and place in the refrigerator until partially set. Stir the pecans and vanilla essence into the ricotta cheese. Using a whisk add to the jelly and whip until mixed. Divide between 4 bowls and refrigerate once more to set before serving.

Apricot Almond Custard

Ingredients:

6 dried apricots
125ml skimmed milk
2g sweetener
1/4 teaspoon almond essence
1 egg
1 tablespoon flaked almonds

Method:

Preheat the oven to 180C /350F. Bring a small saucepan of water to the boil and add the apricots. Boil for 3-4 minutes to re-hydrate them, drain and roughly chop. Place the apricots, milk, sweetener, almond essence and egg in a small bowl and mix together. Divide between 2 ovenproof dishes or ramekins. Sprinkle with the almonds and bake for 30 minutes or until the custard is firm.

Being on a low carb diet is particularly useful if you have to cook for the family and do not want to cook separate meals. By adapting and adjusting some of the ingredients, you can eat many of the same things as the rest of the family. It is important however that you do your research and know your low carb foods. If buying packaged foods read the labels first to check the carbohydrate content. Some foods contain surprisingly high carbohydrate levels. Getting a carbohydrates list can be useful, either from a diet book or online.

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Low Carb Lunch Recipes

So after I have got my breakfast foods sorted. I’m now turning my attention to Lunchtime, which I realized can often be a problem for many people. Whether you are like me and work from home or at an office, most of us tend to grab a snack at lunchtime, usually in the form of an easy to make or buy sandwich. However, if you are on a low carb diet, bread is usually not an option. Here I have suggested a selection of ideas for a low carb lunch that can just as easily be made to take to work or for a low carb lunch at home. But all designed to help loose stomach fat

Salads are a popular choice for someone on a low carb diet. Salads need not be a boring plate of lettuce and cheese on a low carb diet. Use lots of salad greens such a rocket, spinach and watercress. These not only add a lovely peppery flavor to a salad, but contain a good variety of nutrients than lettuce. Many salads can be bought pre-prepared. So when buying for a low carb lunch, having a bag in the fridge is very convenient.

You are only limited by your imagination as to what goes into your salad. Cold meats such as chicken, beef, pork make a filling low carb lunch. Fish such as salmon and tuna (tinned or fresh) or seafood, not only make a filling lunch, but provide you with essential vitamins and minerals. A Greek salad using feta cheese and extra eggs for protein or the classic Caesar salad are easy to prepare and pack for work.

When on any diet it is important to have variety to stop boredom creeping in, so try to vary your low carb lunch menu. Adding flavor to your salads helps make them more interesting. So if using chicken in your salad, think about having chicken tikka or grilled chicken marinated in your favourite herbs and spices.

Adding a dressing to your salad is another way to add interest and flavor. If using bottled dressings always check the labels for carb values first by looking at the grams of carbohydrates. Many branded salad dressings have a high carb value. But there are many salad dressings you can make up yourself. Using olive oil as a salad dressing is very versatile. Olive oil can be bought with herbs such as basil and garlic already added. Keep a bottle at work to pour over your salad at the last moment to keep it crisp and fresh.

One very simple dressing that goes with many low carb lunch salads is lime dressing. You will need: 1 tablespoon lime juice, 1 teaspoon water, 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, seasoning to taste and some sweetener to taste. Put the lime juice and water in a bowl and add the sweetener. Season to taste and whisk together. Whisk in the olive oil.

For those who prefer something hot for their low carb lunch, soup provides a complete meal in a bowl. There a very few ready-made soups that are low carb, so if buying soup read the label first. Miso soup is one low carb soup. Low carb soup is a great way to use up leftovers, make up a big batch and freeze it to have a ready supply of low carb lunches. There are many low carb soup recipes on line.

If cooking chicken, a delicious base for a soup is the chicken stock. Boil the bones from the chicken for at least half an hour, longer if you have time. Strain through a sieve, then either cool and freeze for later or use straight away for your soup. Frying some onions or leeks and adding low carb vegetables such as mushrooms and peppers and then blending them together with the chicken stock makes a very comforting low carb lunch.

Eggs are another great low carb lunch that are quick and easy to prepare. Omelettes can be loaded with many different low carb ingredients such as cheese, ham, mushrooms, peppers or low carb vegetables. Or have scrambled egg in a low carb tortilla topped with cheese.

Of course if you have to eat out at work it is not all that easy to find a low carb restaurant or snack bar. But with a little thought you can choose somewhere to eat that has low carb foods on the menu. For instance a steak restaurant, you could have the steak and a green salad or grilled chicken or salmon. Many pizza places have very good salads, just make sure you ask for the dressing on the side. And yes you can have a burger, just don’t eat the bun.

For those wishing to buy a low carb lunch or low carb fast food ready prepared there are many low carb protein shakes and low carb bars on the market. Low carb protein bars provide a quick snack. While this is not sufficient for a daily meal, they are handy to have in an emergency and can be kept in the office drawer or kitchen cupboard.

One of the best ways to make sure you have a low carb lunch ready is by using leftovers. When you make a main meal think about making a little extra or saving some for your lunch. Simply put it in a plastic container in the fridge for the next day or freeze batches for another time. This way you can build up a varied selection of ‘ready meals’.

There are many low carb recipes on line to help you choose your low carb lunch. Being prepared for your week ahead also helps you stick to your low carb diet. Make a menu plan for the week and shop for the ingredients you will need. This is also a good way to save waste.

Well that’s lunch sorted. Next stop Dinner.

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Lose Stomach Fat With A Low Carb Diet

So in my quest to loose stomach fat I discovered that eating too many carbohydrates adds to your waistline. So another great way to lose stomach fat is a low carb diet. However I found that there are many different variations of low carb weight loss diets. But they pretty much have one thing in common and that is a strict reduction in the number of daily carbohydrates you can eat with fats and proteins replacing most of the carbohydrates. So on a low carb weight loss diet you should get at least 60-70% of your daily calories from fat and carbohydrates should make up less than 10% and in some diets only 5% of your daily calories.

This may sound more like a weight gain diet than a weight loss diet. But it’s all to do with the way the body processes and uses carbohydrates. Dietary fat is not always converted into body fat, whereas Carbohydrates are readily converted into fat by the hormone insulin.

The function of carbohydrates in the body is to produce energy and the liver breaks the carbs down into simple sugars or glucose. This results in the pancreas producing insulin, which converts this sugar into energy by getting it into the blood cells of the body.

So consuming too many carbohydrates causes the body to produce too much glucose. This will then be stored in the liver and the muscle cells as glycogen until the body next needs a burst of energy. Any excess glycogen that isn’t stored in the liver or cells is stored as body fat. Insulin also stimulates your brain to produce hunger signals, usually causing you to eat more carbohydrates. That’s why we see an increase in weight when high amounts of carbohydrates are eaten.

High carbohydrate eating can become a vicious cycle because of the production of insulin. Once you have eaten something sugary such as a chocolate bar to satisfy hunger, how many times have you felt hungry again very soon after. This is because high carbohydrate or simple carb foods are released into the blood stream very quickly and cause the insulin levels to ‘spike’ and the energy be used up rapidly. For this reason low carb weight loss diets have proved very successful for some people.

Reducing the amount of carbohydrates in your diet puts a stop to this cycle. Because when you restrict your carbohydrate intake, your insulin levels drop and levels of glycogen increase. The glycogen responsible for supplying your body with energy causes body fat to be burned and cholesterol to be removed from the body. Cholesterol collects in the arteries, deposits of which can lead to heart disease and strokes.

If you severely restrict your daily intake of carbs on a low carb weight loss diet, you put your body into what is known as a state of ketosis. The result of ketosis is that your blood sugar levels stabilize, your insulin levels drop and because the body is burning fat, you lose weight. Unfortunately one of the side effects is bad breath. Drinking more water and using sugar free gum or mints can help with this.

This all sounds very simple and logical. There are however many different types of low carb weight loss diets, all with there own different guidelines. If you wish to start on a low carb weight loss diet, you need to find the most effective diet for you. Some low carb diets restrict the amount of fruit and bread you can have. While others opt for a balance of very low carb foods such as whole grain foods as well as no carb foods.

Being on a low carb weight loss diet does not mean a no carb diet. As much of our energy comes from carbs it is important to include some in the diet. A carbohydrate deficiency can lead to severe fatigue, mental confusion and muscle cramps.

A low carb weight loss diet has had much success for some people in achieving a healthy weight loss and reducing stomach fat. There are many success stories to support a low carb weight loss diet, in particular with people who suffer from diabetes. Being able to control their sugar levels has meant being able to lower doses of medication Patelco Credit Union Location and insulin as well as having the benefit of losing weight.

There are now a number of low carb weight loss products on the market to help you with your diet. These include low carb snacks, low carb muffins and cookies as well as low carb protein shakes. There is also a growing market in vitamins and mineral supplements for low carb dieters. This is because some low carb weight loss diets do not include certain grain-based products. These products contain nutrients such as B vitamins and therefore you may be lacking them in your diet. Vitamins C and E found in fruits may also be omitted from the diet. Hence the necessity for added supplements.

Low carb weight loss diets have helped millions of people to lose weight. But when starting a low carb diet it is worth doing some research into the low carb diet you have chosen. You need to be familiar with the structure of the diet and exactly what foods you can eat before you start. If properly followed it can help you achieve your long-term weight loss goals.

I hope to share with you some recipes that I have been using and will post them here, so please come back from time to time to see what I have found that working for me.

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