If you are trying to lose weight, a low-carb diet can be extremely helpful. Various studies have also shown that eating fewer carbs can help reduce the risk of diabetes, insulin resistance and other severe health concerns.
As carbs increase blood glucose, having a low-carb diet can also help regulate blood sugar levels.
However, there are certain hindrances you might encounter while on a low-carb diet that can lead to suboptimal results. Though consuming fewer carbs is very productive and effective, cutting back on carbs alone isn’t enough.
There are certain things you must look out for to reap all the advantages of low-carb dieting. From expecting quick results to avoiding other macronutrients, here are the six most common mistakes you should definitely avoid.
1) Consuming too few carbs
A low-carb diet, as the name itself suggests, requires you to cut carbs, but low-carbs don’t necessarily mean no carbs. To maintain an appropriate diet while starting a low-carb diet, you need to ensure you are eating the desired amount of all the healthy macronutrients, including proteins, carbs, fats and fibre.
If you consume too few carbs, your body could start to feel weak, and you may also get a carb crash (an experience that convinces you that a low-carb diet isn’t right for you). So, make simple adjustments, and try and consume all the essential nutrients in the appropriate portions.
2) Not having patience and time to adjust
Indeed, it can be very difficult to adopt a completely new way of eating that doesn't include foods you’ve been eating for so long.
However, to gain all the possible benefits of low-carb dieting, it's very important to have patience and give your body time to properly adjust to a whole new way of consuming food. You may have cravings at first, but with time and patience, your body will adjust, and you’ll start to lose weight healthily.
3) Do not avoid fats
Healthy fats are a major part of a balanced diet, and avoiding them is as unhealthy as overeating them. Not having proper amount of fat in your diet will make you hungrier, sabotage your low-carb diet and will inevitably slow down your weight loss.
Therefore, you must make sure to include fats, including roasted or salted nuts and whole eggs in your diet to avoid depriving your body of healthy fats.
4) Preferring packaged foods over home-cooked foods
When you are on a low-carb diet, you must be extra cautious of packaged foods that claim they have no or less carbs.
Avoid products such as meal replacement bars, low-carb desserts and other items labelled as sugar-free or low-carb. Packaged foods claiming to have no carbs have components such as maltitol, which does more harm than good and negatively impacts your blood sugar levels.
It's also crucial to note that packaged foods named gluten-free have in fact more calories and carbs.
5) Not planning your meals beforehand
When planning to start a low-carb diet, always plan your diet beforehand to avoid the boredom of certain foods.
Prepare a list of all kinds of foods that you want to eat, and eliminate all the foods that can compromise your diet. Make sure to check the fat, fibre and carb content of the food to determine how those items can healthily fit into your diet regime. Additionally, you must also plan your meals in advance so you may have your food in a timely manner.
6) Not drinking water
Water is very significant when it comes to weight loss. If you are not drinking plenty of water, your metabolism slows down, which affects your weight loss. Drinking eight to ten glasses of water every day helps your body distribute nutrients to every muscle, remove toxins and burn fat efficiently.
Low-carb diets may provide an ideal solution for health conditions, including type 2 diabetes and obesity. However, simply cutting carbs from your food isn’t enough for a healthy weight loss.
The best way to achieve sustainable weight loss is by making small dietary changes over time and including all types of nutrients and vitamins in your diet.
Low-carb dieting can go wrong in several ways and may result in side effects, so you must look out for mistakes you shouldn’t be making. Look to consume a well-balanced and nutritious diet, and exercise regularly for optimal weight loss results.