A Low-Calorie, high-fat diet (LCHF) is primarily dominated by proteins and animal fats. This diet also includes carbohydrates in the natural form from the vegetables that are grown above the ground. This diet also consists of the foods that are little industrially processed and is as organic as it can be. You should also avoid food that consists of unnecessary additives and artificial colours. The primary point of focus with an LCHF diet is to swap enormous carbohydrate amounts (starch and sugar) against natural fats.
But you have to keep in mind that following an LCHF diet meal does not mean that you cannot have different types of cuisines and food on the menu. You can enjoy a full LCHF diet deliciously and healthily by adding some of the easy prepare low carbohydrate easy Indian recipes. Low carbohydrates mean cutting down the total amount in the diet. You can follow this diet to facilitate a healthy way to reduce fat, improve blood pressure and sugar. Now let us see why an LCHF diet meal plan is beneficial for your health.
A lower amount of carbohydrates reduces the insulin level requirement and controls blood sugar. This diet is helpful for persons who are suffering from diabetes or are insulin resistant.
This diet enhances good cholesterol creation and protects the heart from all sorts of cardiovascular diseases.
A low carbohydrate and high-fat diet keeps you satisfied and keeps all your cravings at bay. It makes it easier for people to burn fat and be successful in the weight loss regimen.
Definition of LCHF Diet
The LCHF diet is one of the most significant terms for successful eating plans that will enhance fats and reduce carbs. LCHF diets are lower in carbohydrates, moderate in protein amount, and higher in fat. This diet meal plan is also known as the Banting diet. It is due to the discoverer named William Banting, a British man who has popularized it after losing a major portion of his weight through this diet.
The diet emphasizes eating unprocessed and whole-food items like low-carb vegetables, fish, nuts, eggs and discourages the packaged and processed food items usage. It also restricts added sugar and food items containing high starch like potatoes, bread, rice, and pasta. This diet does not include clear standards for the macronutrient percentages due to the change of the lifestyle. This diet recommends an intake of daily carbohydrates of 20 to 100 grams. However, people who consume more than 100 grams of carbs in a day can also follow this diet and get inspired by its principles. You can also customize it according to your requirements.
Is the LCHF diet similar to the Ketogenic or Atkins Diet?
The ketogenic or Atkins diet is a lower carbohydrate diet that falls under the LCHF diet category. Some diets include strict restrictions on the total number of carbs you can consume within a day. A standard ketogenic diet consists of 20% protein, 5% carbs, and 75% fat to reach the ketosis stage. In this stage, the body switches to burn the fats for the energy in place of the carbohydrates.
To start the weight reduction, the two-week phase of the Atkins diet allows only 20 grams to consume every day. After two weeks, you can add more carbs slowly. While these low-carb and high-fat diets are more restrictive, you can easily follow the LCHF diet without any requirement to follow some specific guidelines. It will offer immense flexibility to those who love to consume a higher amount of carbohydrates in a day. Since this is the most adaptable diet, it is much easier to follow than strict diets like Atkins or ketogenic.
Why follow an LCHF Diet?
The low carbohydrate diet might prevent or enhance various health conditions like diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and high blood pressure. This diet typically recommends people to consume lower than 100 grams of carbohydrate every day.
Ways to Measure the Net Carbohydrates
Net carbohydrates refer to the carbs that primarily get absorbed by the human body. When you examine a dish, it is significant to calculate the total carbohydrates. When you need to subtract the total carbs from the fiber from the total consumed carbs, you will get the net carbs. Below are some of the indispensable things to consider while calculating the net carbs.
- The formula for calculating net carb is Total carbs-Fiber= Net carbs. The fiber content will create a massive difference while measuring the net carbs.
- For most precise calculations, identify the total carbohydrates number present on the product package nutritional label. You might also check the recommended serving size and adjust it according to the amount you will be eating.
- For lentils, grains, and legumes, there is a default nutritional value listed under the uncooked grains. You can adjust it and measure the cooked nutritional value amount that you will be going to consume.
- You should also subtract the sugar alcohol content present in the processed food items from the total carbs since the body will not be able to absorb it.
- While following the LCHF diet, it is significant to eat as much clean food as possible. It is one of the simple and basic guidelines that you have to remember while following this diet. In the LCHF, you do not have to count the calories or anything like that. You have to eat when you are hungry till the time when you will be satisfied.
Foods that you can Eat in the LCHF diet Plan
Below are some of the food items that you can eat while following an LCHF diet plan.
You can eat preferably grass-fed meat like pork, beef bacon, venison, and sausages. There is no necessity to cut off the amount of fat from the meat. If you want to consume sausages, select the meat with a high percentage (at least 70%) and low and fat in carbs.
It is beneficial to eat all fish types higher in fat like mackerel, sardines, herring, and sardines.
We recommend consuming turkey, chicken, and duck with a low amount of fat. You can even eat the fat and the skin.
Different forms of eggs allowed in this diet are boiled, fried, poached, omelet, and scrambled.
The vegetables that are permissible in the LCHF diet include those which are grown above the ground. Different forms of lettuce like spinach, arugula, Rosso and many more, celery, sugar peas, squash, onion cucumber, broccoli, zucchini, olives, cabbage, peppers, asparagus, haricots verts, aubergine, mushroom, tomatoes, Brussel sprouts, eggplant, avocado, and cauliflower are all allowed in the diet.
You can eat various types of shellfish as well. You can consume them with fat sauces as they are lower in fat.
Animal fat should be as natural as it can be. You can focus on the whole fat options and not on the diet versions. Some good examples of fat are olive and rapeseed oil, real butter, and coconut oil. You can also use real mayo, cream, full-fat cream, fat sauces.
You can intake all types of fat cheeses like camembert, chevre, mozzarella, cheese spreads, brie, gorgonzola, feta, halloumi, and parmesan. Other dairy products applicable in the LCHF diet include sour cream, full fat (40%) cream, cottage cheese, yogurt, and more that contain fat burner elements. If you are allergic to Whey Protein, you could go for the almond milk and earth-balanced spread.
Food Items to Avoid
Now let us check out the food items that are not allowed in the LCHF diet plan mentioned below.
You cannot eat pasta, couscous, quinoa, oats, lentils, porridge, potatoes, bread, rice, beans, cereals, muesli, and other rooted vegetables. The only carbohydrate that is allowed in this meal plan should only come from vegetables.
Unnatural and Processed products
These are all margarine and light or diet products that contain a massive amount of superficial ingredients.
Fruit contains a lot of natural sugar. You should even avoid dried fruit.
It is the worst among the lot. You should ignore all the items that contain sugar like ice cream, crackers, beer, crisps or chips, sweets, cookies, juices, sodas, and many other things that contain artificial sweeteners.
Sample Menu chart for LCHF diet plan
Now let us take a look into the sample food chart plan for the LCHF diet process.
|Monday||Omelet with lots of vegetables, fried in coconut oil or butter||Yogurt with blueberries or seasonal fruit and 4 to 5 almonds||Cheeseburger with no bun served with salsa sauce and vegetables|
|Tuesday||Bacon with eggs with salt or veggie broth powder||Veggies and burgers from the previous night||Salmon with vegetables and butter|
|Wednesday||Vegetables and Eggs, fried in coconut oil or butter||Shrimp or prawn salad with some olive, avocado, walnut, sesame oil, almond, and grape seed||Grilled chicken with sautéed vegetables|
|Thursday||Omelet with lots of vegetables, fried in coconut oil or butter||Smoothie with coconut water or milk, almonds, protein powder, and berries||Veggies and steak|
|Friday||Bacon with eggs with salt or veggie broth powder||Chicken salad with olive oil||Pork chops or ribs with green vegetables|
|Saturday||Omelet with various vegetables||Yogurt with coconut flakes, berries, and 4 to 5 walnuts||Meatballs with vegetables|
|Sunday||Bacon with eggs with salt or veggie broth powder||Smoothie with heavy cream and coconut cream, chocolate-flavored protein powder, and various berries||Grilled chicken wings with some spinach salad|
Low carbohydrate substitute for Rice.
Since most of the Indian sauces and stir-fries include flavorful sauces, we require something that will soak up the juices and lower in carbohydrates. That is why rice is the primary component of every Indian meal program. One cup of white cooked rice consists of 44 grams of net carbs, and one cup of brown cooked rice contains 42 grams of net carbohydrates.
Since rice includes high carb, there are smarter carbohydrates like cauliflower for you. It is nothing shredded from the head of the cauliflower, and it is easier to prepare also.
Low carbohydrate substitute for Roti
For different dry dishes like tandoori chicken, Kadai paneer, and fish tikka, Indians have the habit of eating roti with them high in carbs. But in the LCHF diet plan, you might include a cup full of lettuce as one of the best substitutes for roti. You might also try lettuce wraps with cilantro chutney.
Protein Choices for the Vegetarians
As we know, non-vegetarians include a lot of options in the LCHF diet, but what about the vegan or the vegetarian ones? Well, we have suggested some of the higher protein sources that non-meat eating people can include in their diet plan, which are:
- Hemp seeds
- Brown rice protein powders
- Egg white protein powders
Snack for the entire week
In the sample LCHF diet meal plan, we have listed what to consume only for breakfast, dinner, and lunch. Now in this segment, we have included the snacks that you can intake in this process.
- Coconut flakes
- 70% more cocoa dark chocolate
- Egg white protein powder
- Rice crackers and Smokehouse Nut
Frequently Asked Questions
Since we have a clear idea about what food items to intake and what are its benefits in the LCHF diet, now it is time to check out the most commonly asked questions people have in their minds regarding this diet. They are as below.
Are lentils or dals and chickpeas or beans lower in carbohydrates?
One straight and simple answer to this question are ‘No’. One cup (almost 180 grams) of cooked lentil or dal contains 36 grams of carbs. After subtracting 14 grams of fiber from it, it still consists of the remaining 22 grams as the net carbs. Similarly, 160 to 200 grams or one cup of cooked legumes and beans contains carbohydrates varying between 44 to 49 grams. After the deduction of the fiber, it will vary between 9 to 16 grams. Thus they still include an average of 30 grams of net carbs in every serving. Based on the dietary restrictions and personal tolerance, you can include small amounts of a low-carb diet in the meal plan.
Does Quinoa contain lower carbohydrates?
Quinoa is a seed that is full of fiber, protein, and other nutrients. But it is not a lower carbohydrate food. A cooked quinoa cup contains 39 grams of carbs which is almost 50% more than the brown rice and white rice amount.
The LCHF diet is one of the best eating methods that primarily concentrates on carbs reduction and replacing them with healthy fats. Following this diet, you might undergo weight loss, improves your cognitive functions and decreases the heart disease risk, and stabilizes the high blood sugar. It is a versatile diet, and everyone can adapt it according to their requirements. Whether you want to cut fat, lose weight, fight sugar cravings, following this diet is one of the best ways to reach your fitness goals.
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