Fats and Oils
There are some people that cannot eat vegetable oil in high amounts, olive oil or mayonnaise. It is a good thing that vegetable oils are rich in polyunsaturated omega-6 fatty acids, and are included in margarine, sunflower oil, soybean oil, safflower oil, corn oil and canola oil. They are also pro-inflammatory in our organism, making you ill if they are your only fat source. You shouldn’t cook with them as well.
You should also consume nuts in moderate amounts since they are also rich in omega-6 fatty acids, except walnuts and macadamias. Omega 6 and omega 3 fatty acids are essential polyunsaturated fats, therefore you should balance the intake, only 1 teaspoon a day will be enough. In order to provide your body with omega 3 fatty acids which are important part of the low car food list, you should consume more tuna, shellfish and salmon. You can add several nuts or a little bit of mayonnaise which will give you omega 6 fatty acids. In case you aren’t a fan of seafood, you should eat small amounts of fish or krill oil supplements for omega 3s.
The majority of people can tolerate saturated and monosaturated fats such as macadamia nuts, avocado, egg yolks, butter and coconut oil because they can diminish inflammatory processes due to their chemically stable structure. You can incorporate fat and oils in your salad dressing, sauces and any other additions for your dishes, and after a while you will get used to adding a source of fat into your meals.
On the other hand, you should eliminate hydrogenated fats like margarine in order to reduce the trans fats ingestion. Keep in mind to buy only cold pressed oils. Always refrigerate your cold pressed oils in order to prevent rancidity.
Don’t heat the vegetable oils and when you need to frie something, use beef tallow, olive oil, ghee or coconut oil because they have high smoke points.
- Macadamia Nuts
- Macadamia oil
- Mayonnaise (most of them have carbs, so count them. Duke’s brand doesn’t contain sugar.)
- Beef tallow (from grass fed cattle)
- Butter: from organic sources
- Olive oil (organic)
- Chicken fat (organic)
- Duck fat (organic)
- Avocado (very rich in fat, which is why I’m including it here)
- Avocado oil
- Olive oil (organic)
- Almond oil
- Seed and most nut oils: Sesame oil, Flaxseed oil, etc. These are rich in inflammatory Omega 6 fats, so use them in moderate amounts, and don’t heat them.
- Ghee (butter with milk solids removed)
- Organic coconut oil, coconut butter and coconut cream concentrate
- Organic Red Palm oil
- 85-90% dark chocolate can be eaten in small amounts, or use Chocoperfection low carb chocolate.
- Lard, like organic leaf lard (it mustn’t be hydrogenated)
- Peanut Butter: use onlyt unsweetened products, and restrict because of Omega 6 content.
Sources of Protein
Always purchase fattier cuts of meat since they contain less protein and more fat, which is good. Do not buy any kind of meat, always ask for orgnic meat from grass fed animals. Also buy organic eggs in order to reduce the intake of bacteria, steroid hormones and antibiotics. The following proteins are the best for low carb food list:
Poultry: duck, goose, pheasant, turkey, quail, chicken, Cornish hen. Always look for free range
Pork: pork chops, ham, pork loin, Boston butt. Avoid hams that contain sugar.
Meat: lamb, veal, beef, goat and wild game. Look for grass fed meat because it contains better fatty acid profile.
Fish or seafood: make sure to buy wild caught:mahi-mahi, snapper, tuna, trout, salomon, sardines, scrod, sole, calamari, catfish, anchovies, cod, flounder, halibut, herring, mackerel. You can eat canned tuna and salmon, but always look for the labels for sugars or fillers included.
Shellfish: oysters, squid, mussels,crab, lobster, clams, scallops, shrimp. Avoid imitation crab meat since it includes sugar, gluten and other additives.
Whole eggs: you can prepare them in many different ways: fried, hard-boiled, deviled, poached, omelets, scrambled or soft-boiled.
Bacon and sausage: don’t buy those with sugar or additives like soy or wheat, just pay attention to the labels. Search for sugar-free bacon in the healthy food stores.
You can find protein in peanut butter and soy products such as edamame, tempeh and tofu. Be careful when consuming them because they are rich in carbohydrate.
Whey protein powders, rice, pea, hemp or other vegetable protein powders. Keep in mind that whey protein could cause an insulin spike in the organism. If you have difficulties while trying to lower your weight, you should restrict or completely avoid whey
Most of the vegetables are low in carbs, so when buying them, just make sure they are organic. A better solution is to grow them by yourself if you can. However, you should stay away of starchy vegetables such as potatoes, sweet potatoes, winter squash, corn and peas. Restrict sweeter vegetables like carrots, peppers, tomatoes and summer squashes. Here is the list of beneficial vegetables, but if some vegetable you like is missing, you can freely add it.
- Beet Greens
- Bell peppers*
- Bok choy
- Alfalfa Sprouts
- All leafy green vegetable
- Brussels sprouts
- Dill pickles
- Bamboo Shoots
- Bean Sprouts
- Celery root
- Snow Peas
- Collard greens
- Dandelion greens
- Water chestnuts
- Sauerkraut (watch for added sugar)
- Summer squash*
- Swiss chard
- Lettuces and salad greens (arugula, Boston lettuce, chicory, endive, escarole, fennel, mache, radicchio, romaine, sorrel.)
* Restrict amounts of these vegetables, because they are rich in carbs.
You are also allowed to consume raw milk products, but if you cannot find some, you can always ask for organic ones. However, if you notice that you can’t reduce weight, restrict the intake or avoid dairy products completely because dairy proteins like whey and casein could cause insulin spike in the organism. I also recommend avoiding products that have whey protein included since whey could cause insulin spike.
- Mascarpone cheese
- Nuts and seeds
- All hard and soft cheeses: (1 ounce portion is equal to 1 carb)
- Heavy whipping cream
- Full fat cottage cheese
- Cream cheese (1 ounce portion is equal to 1 carb)
- Full fat sour cream (pay attention to the label for any fillers or additives. Ask for brands like Daisy which are pure cream without milk; contains low levels of carbs and protein
- Unsweetened whole milk yogurt (restrict intake as it is a little richer in carb)
Before consuming nuts and seeds, soak and roast them because in that way you will eliminate the anti-nutrients. Since they are rich in calories per serving, you won’t know how much calories you intake with a handful of nuts, so if you are not losing enough weight, reduce the amount or eliminate nuts completely from your diet.
Nuts: the lowest in net carbs are:macadamias, pecans, almonds and walnuts and they can be consumed in moderate amounts. On the other hand, cashews, pistachios and chestnuts are rich in carb, so eat in small amounts to prevent going over carb limits.
Seeds like pumpkin, sunflower, sesame, etc. contain high levels of Omega 6 fats. You should eat them in moderate amounts.
Low carb food list should fully eliminate baking, so you can only use almond flour.
You can eat peanuts only in moderate quantities since they are legumes and contain high levels of protein and are also rich in Omega 6 fats.
Try to eliminate nuts from your low carb foods list since they are a rich source of Omega 6 fats, which promotes inflammation in the body. Personally, when I eat too many nuts in few days, I feel stiff and sore and my mood is very changeable. I blame the omega 6 fats for this.
- Flavored seltzer water (sugar-free)
- Lemon and lime juice in moderate amounts
- Almond milk (sugar-free)
- Clear broth, bone broth
- Herbal tea (sugar-free)
- Coconut milk (sugar-free, can or carton)
- Decaf coffee (caffeine can increase blood sugar levels)
- Decaf tea (sugar-free)
- Soy milk (sugar-free, count protein grams as well)
Ofcourse you need to avoid sweetend foods, but if you feel cravings for sweet, here are some sweet alternatives. I strongly recommend you to use liquid sweet products since powdered forms of the unnatural sweeteners contain maltodextrin, dextrose or other sugars that can cause you weight gain.
- Xylitol (your dogs mustn’t reach the foods that contain this sweetener)
- Splenda*, use the liquid form since the powdered normally includes maltodextrin
- Inulin and Chicory Root
- Stevia, use the liquid form since the powdered normally includes maltodextrin
- Monk Fruit
- Lo Han Guo
Since some readers expressed worrying about Splenda, I did some research in the medical literature and read some studies that have been made on sucralose (splenda).
I didn’t find any study which proves convincible that sucralose leads to human health problems. I think that consuming sugar, honey and other nutritive sweeteners leaves negative blood sugar impacts which are far worse than those that could be related with consummation of small amounts of Splenda.
There are people who tolerate Splenda and those who don’t. The same thing is for sugar alcohols and other sweeteners like chicory root and insulin.
- Japanese Shirataki noodles
- Pork Rinds, perfect alternative for bread whits, but they are also rich in protein, so consume them in moderation.
- You can consume blueberries, strawberries, raspberries occasionally in moderate quantities, because they are very low in carbohydrates. However, try to avoid other types of fruit since majority of them are very rich in carb and can bother the ketosis.
If you didn’t know, spices also contain carbs so you should also count them before incorporating them into your diet. Most of the spice mixes such as steak seasoning include sugar. Avoid commercial salt since it is usually a form of powdered dextrose, and instead choose sea salt.