The low carb diet plan has become increasingly popular over the last decade or so, with popular albeit controversial diets such as the Atkins Diet gaining serious popularity. Some more to follow are the Paleolithic (Paleo) Diet and the Ketogenic (Keto) Diet.
But just what is a low carb diet? A low carb diet is typically a diet which consists of very few carbohydrates but plenty of fats and protein. A low carbohydrate dieter can expect a diet that consists of lots of fish, meat, dairy products and moderate amounts of low carb vegetables and fruit – and very little to no carbohydrates heavy foods such as bread, rice, pasta, potatoes, oatmeal and sweets and candies.
The central argument behind a very low carb diet is that regular consumption of carbohydrates can lead to rapid weight gain, which can increase the likelihood of many serious health problems and illnesses such as high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes. Supporters of low carb diets believe that by reducing the amount of carbohydrates in our diets, we can more easily maintain a healthy weight and either reduce or prevent health problems associated with being overweight.
But is the low carb diet meal plan healthy? And will it really lead to serious weight loss? Read on to find out the major low carb diet pros and cons:
Low Carb Diet Pros:
Fast Weight Loss – A little or no carbohydrates diet can lead to fast weight loss with many followers of this diet reporting great weight loss results. Cutting out this food group can discourage excessive fat storage in the body, and encourage more fat to be burned.
• Lower Blood Pressure – A study showed that participants only eating low carb foods noticed a significant lowering in blood pressure while on a carb reduction diet. For anyone that suffers from high blood pressure, cutting back on carbs could help improve your condition.
• Reduce Your Chance of Type 2 Diabetes – If you lose significant weight while on a low carb diet plan, you’ll be reducing your chances of developing type 2 diabetes. This is because once you reach a healthy weight; your body will be in more fighting shape to develop insulin resistance as well as lower your blood sugar levels.
• Easy to Follow – Some diets are darn hard to follow, what with their point counting systems or complicated recipes – but generally speaking a low carb meal plan is very simple to follow and understand. If you don’t have the time or patience for complicated diets, following a diet that’s low in carbs could be a good choice for you.
Low Carb Diet Cons:
• Similar Results to Other Diets – There is little evidence to suggest that only eating low carb foods is more effective or produces faster results than other common diets. If you can’t imagine enjoying a life without plenty of carbs, you probably won’t find this diet to be worth it.
• Constipation – The lack of grains and the downplay on fruits and vegetables in low carb recipes could lead to severe constipation, which won’t just be uncomfortable but also could stunt your weight loss results. Many carbohydrate foods are fiber heavy, and without them in your daily diet, unpleasant constipation could easily ensue.
• Unbalanced Diet – Even if you drop a lot of weight from eating low carb meals, your diet may not be healthier for it. Carbohydrates are considered by many nutritionists as an essential food group for maintaining a healthy diet, and cutting them out or even just majorly reducing them could lead your diet and health out of whack. In addition to constipation, other health problems due to no or little carbs in your diet could include feeling weak, experiencing severe headaches and suffering from fatigue.
Sticking to a low carb meal plan could help you lose weight and improve your health, or it could potentially have adverse health effects that could lead you worse off than when you began. The fact of the matter is, not all diets are for everyone and virtually every type of diet comes with both its advantages and its disadvantages. Here is a list of some of the top low carb diets that are trending today:
Before you embark on a low carbohydrate diet, consult your doctor to see if this will be a good fit for you and your lifestyle. Good luck!