Eating On A Low Carb Diet

low carb diet cookbook
Eating On A Low Carb Diet

Eating on a low carb diet can be a bit of a challenge, especially in the beginning. But once you get acclimated to it, you will easily know what you can and can’t eat in order to lose weight easily.

When I first started my low-carb, high-fat diet, I found it easier to follow a list of what I could and couldn’t eat. Then after a while, it started to click in my brain how to eat. So today I wanted to share my list with you.

It really is simple. You want to avoid anything that has sugar in it. This would include foods that have natural sugars, like root vegetables and starchy vegetables as well as most fruits.

And you want to eat a lot of fatty foods. I’m not talking about fats that are associated with sweets, like donuts. No, I’m talking about foods that have natural fats.

But to make it easy for you, I created a list that you could use as a guide.

What NOT to eat on a low carb diet

  • Sugar and Sugary foods: Avoid any candy, cakes, cookies, pies, soda, juices, ice cream. (Most processed foods contain sugar and should be avoided.)
  • Grains and starchy foods: Avoid any kinds of bread, pasta, corn or rice. These are all very high in carbs and sugar.
  • Beans: Although these are high in protein they are very starchy and should be avoided on a lchf diet.
  • Root veggies: Most root veggies tend to be higher in carbs because they have more starch.
  • Sugar substitutes: These are highly processed and fake food. They should be avoided.
  • Beer and alcohol: Beer and mixed drinks are very high in carbs. There are some spirits that are low in carbs if you must partake. Drinking On A Low Carb Diet
  • Fruit: Most fruits are high in sugar with the exception of berries. However, berries are easy to go overboard on so I suggest avoiding completely in the beginning of a low carb diet.
  • Processed Food: I suggest avoiding all processed foods. Processed foods always have extra chemicals and sugar hidden in them. You should avoid all sauces and condiments like ketchup. Always read the label and avoid anything that is more than <1 sugar.
  • Milk and Yogurt: These tend to be high in sugar and carbs. The low fat are the worst because they remove the fat and add sugar.
  • Bad oils: Avoid canola, corn, vegetable, peanut, cottonseed and soybean oils. Also, avoid any fake oil like partially hydrogenated oil or margarine.

What TO eat on a low carb diet

It is really all about eating more fat. The more fat you eat, the more fat you will burn.

Learn more about eating fat to lose weight. 

  • Healthy oils: Butter, Ghee (clarified butter), extra virgin olive oil, extra virgin unrefined coconut oil, avocado oil and bacon grease.
  • Eggs: Eggs are the perfect food. Free range eggs are best if you can find them. You can eat eggs any way you like. They also make a wonderful snack, just keep some hard boiled eggs on hand.
  • Meats: Beef, pork, bacon, chicken, and turkey.
  • Fish and Seafood: Fatty fish is best. But you can also enjoy shellfish as well, just be sure to dip it in some yummy melted butter.
  • Cheese: Full fat cheese is best. Avoid anything that is low fat.
  • Olives: Black and green olives are very high in healthy fat and very low in carbs.
  • Avocado: This veggie is full of tons of healthy fat. Eat as much as you want.
  • Nuts and Seeds: Avoid the dry roasted nuts as they often include peanut oil. I suggest raw nuts and seeds. Just check the label. You only want nuts, nothing extra.
  • Spices: salt, pepper, fresh herbs and most spices have zero carbs.
  • Green vegetables: Most of the vegetables that grow above the ground are great with the exception of corn and “winter” squashes. Also, go light with the tomatoes.

I hope you find these lists helpful for your low-carb, high-fat diet helpful. I typed it off the top of my head, so if I’m missing anything or if you have a question, please type it below. 🙂

PS. Here are some Eating Out Tips for your Low Carb Diet.



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27 thoughts on “Eating On A Low Carb Diet”

  1. I’m on a low-carb diet and I wonder if I will be able to keep this good habit for many years. I have to let go of many bad foods to ensure I keep being healthy and that my weight won’t fluctuate too much. Is it true that it’s harder to loose weight when you don’t consistently follow your diet?

    1. For me, eating a low carb diet is a lifestyle choice. I love being medication free. I love feeling so wonderful. I know if I ever go back to eating crap again, I’ll gain it all back.

  2. Hi Wendy,
    Great work and research. I wonder you can be a professional dietitian.
    Although i cannot say that i am fat but i have been suffering with belly getting bigger. lol. I wonder if you can help me with reducing my belly size. Believe me it looks quite odd. 🙁

    1. Most middle aged men struggle with belly fat. My boyfriend had a huge beer belly and it is now flat. He lost over 45 pounds and he is off of his medications. It is pretty simple, Bilal. If you change the way you eat by avoiding the sugar and carbs on the list above and begin to eat lots of good fats you will start to see your stomach go down. It really works.

  3. Haha this sounds like super hardcore paleo. It definitely works though as far as fat loss. I remember when I was on hard paleo, all I ate were the essentials. I did eat fruit however, it allowed me to cut about 125 pounds over the course of a year. Great information here. It’s good that you listed all the foods out for everyone to read. Thanks

    1. Wow! Wil you are awesome! 125 pounds is amazing. It really is hard core paleo. At least for me. I keep pretty strict low carb. But it works as you well know.

  4. Fantastic information, Wendy! Low carb diets are awesome! I used to follow this high-fat and low-carb religiously and it yielded amazing results! This article that you wrote is incredibly helpful. I love that you can eat things like butter and bacon on this diet! I look forward to reading more. Thanks again.

    1. Thank you and yes eating bacon and butter is awesome. My favorite part is the cheese. I’m a huge cheese lover. I think I could live off cheese. LOL!

    1. You would probably do well with this as well. It is similar to Atkins except Atkins is about eating more protein rather than fat.

  5. Hi Wendy, this text looks like written for me, I am over 50, the situation with weight is not dramatic but there is place for improvement. After seeing your list of tips I realize I am not standing very good. But first to say, the items in the starting picture look really great. Where I fail is mainly sugar although I do not take much, just some chocolate from time to time, and then fruit. This is a hard one, I really take it a lot, but this is not berries because those are usually very expensive.

    But most surprising part is about eating fat to burn fat. Can tell you I low this, I do take fat, butter and olive oil are always in the kitchen. My wife uses coconut oil but I really cannot stand its smell. Thanks a lot, very interesting stuff indeed.

    1. Most people are surprised about eating fat to lose fat. I think it is because we have been programmed by the food industry to believe otherwise. Sugar was hard for me as well and now I know that I truly was and will always be a sugar addict. I didn’t realize how much sugar I was actually taking in. Even after I cut out the sweets I wasn’t losing weight. Then I learned that there was lots of hidden sugar in pasta, rice and breads. So now, I just avoid it all.

      By the way, Jovo, if you don’t like the smell of unrefined coconut oil, try the refined kind. It doesn’t have a taste or smell. I prefer the unrefined oil though. I love the smell.

  6. I have been on and off a low carb diet for the last 10 years. It all started with getting gestational diabetes with the pregnancy of my first child. I had to see a dietitian who advised me on how to count the carbs. I found that as a side effect of watching my blood sugar levels from eating a low carb diet was that I lost weight and lowered or maintained my blood sugars.

    I agree with you to avoid things that do have higher sugar content in the food. For people new to the low carb diet they should just avoid certain groups such as grains like bread and pasta. However, as you get good at this it is okay to indulge in that food as long as it is a small amount. A slice of pizza once in a while is okay I find as long as I don’t eat more than one slice.

    Great list of things to eat and avoid!

    1. Thank you so much for sharing your story, Dinh. I bet getting gestational diabetes was scary. I’m glad you did okay though. And the good thing is you learned how to keep your blood sugar in check. Congrats! And thanks again for the information for others.

  7. Hi Wendy! Nice post there about the low carb and high fat diet. I’m also currently on a pseudo-lchf diet lol.. I really wish to do it strictly i.e no carb at all, but sometimes I had to eat some carb because of convenience. But I am strict on the no sugar part. I believe sugar is the number one “bad guy” in modern diet. If everyone can get rid sugar from their diet, we can have a much healthier society.

    Anyway, enough rant about sugar for today. Thanks for the post. You have really breakdown the do’s and don’ts there. Btw I think you should write something on how to cook the meats and what to look for because some fat is good, but some (trans fat, saturated fat) definitely will bring harm in the future. Cheers!

    1. Hi Isaac! And I agree that sugar is the number one bad thing in society. It is the cause of the obesity problem and health crisis. As for the fats, you are right. I will go back and add in the trans fats are bad as well. But there is new evidence that saturated fat is NOT bad. There is no need to cut fat off meats. Eating the skin of a chicken is fine.

      1. Eating the skin is fine? That’s something new to me. I hope you can write a piece on that as all this while people have been talking about how bad eating the skin…

        Another thing Wendy, I’ve read somewhere that cooking meats at high temperature (fried food, barbecue, etc) is bad because it change the composition of the meat etc. Do you have any idea of it?

        1. That is a great idea, Isaac. I will keep it in mind for an article. But when it comes to eating meat, I think about how other animals eat. They really don’t let any of the meat go to waste. They eat as much nourishment as they can. I eat as much fat as I want because I don’t use glucose (carbs for energy). I get my energy from fat. So as a fat burner the skin is great.

          I’m really not sure about the facts of cooking meats at high temperatures, but I will tell you I prefer most of my beef rare. It just tends to taste better that way. I will have to research this topic a bit.

  8. Wendy this is a very good list of food items for people who are at low carb diets, I have been finding ways to lose my belly fat and I think this list could help.. I know some people like have you have mentioned just begin to know what is right for them and I am waiting for sort of intuition to get developed in me when it comes to diets.

  9. Hi, Wendy

    Thanks for sharing this list with me. I have to say; I don’t follow this list to the fullest. I am on a low carb diet, but I eat fruit and berries. I think that fruit is loaded with antioxidant and healthy for me. I don’t gain weight now even if I eat fruit. But you have a lot of other good stuff on your list I agree with you.
    Is it easy for you to follow that list?

    1. This list is very easy for me to follow. It is just a normal way of life for me. Most women have a difficult time going without the fruit. But for me, in order to stay in ketosis (fat-burning) I need to keep my carbs below 20 grams. And since fruits are high in sugar, they knock me out of ketosis. For example, a medium apple is 20 grams of carbs! I do eat lots of veggies as they are much lower in carbs and I do take my vitamins every day.

      I think there are many different ways to do low carb. It really depends on how low a person wants to go. I just find that I feel my best at 20 carbs or less. I hope this helps to answer your question, Tove.

  10. I really love everything on your ‘good” list, so that’s good. Problem is, I like a lot of things on your “Bad” list too. This will require some will power. Wish me luck. Thanks, Jim.

    1. Ha Ha! I know what you mean, Jim. But honestly, once you get off the carbs for a few days, it gets much easier and you won’t need willpower because all of your cravings will be gone. When your body is in “fat burning” rather than glucose burning your blood sugar is leveled out. So you don’t have cravings. I actually feel “normal” while in ketosis. For many years I thought I may have been bipolar because of my mood swings. I now know it was food I was eating that was affecting my mood.

  11. Hi Wendy, nice post! I can definitely relate to this as being a former college athlete. I had to keep to a pretty strict diet and a low carb diet definitely is the base to having a healthy lifestyle and feeling great about yourself. Great read and I like your site!

  12. Hi, thank you for this great article.

    May I ask something regarding this theory?
    How will my body functions without those carbs that usually being converted as sugar and instant energy?
    Will I end up being tired and ill if I adopt this kind of diet?

    How long should I stick to it?
    Thanks in advanced

    1. This is a great question. I find that my energy level is high throughout the day. I don’t drag in the afternoons like I used to and I also don’t get hungry like I used to. Dinner is often my first meal of the day. I feel amazing and my health is better than ever. Because of this, I will be eating low carbs for the rest of my life. My body loves me for it.

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