So…you want to start a low carb lifestyle. Great! Great first step in the right direction….but…now what? Now what do you do?
First things first – you need to chose a plan. Sure, you can try and work out your own, but look at it like this. Let’s say you live in California. Someone says “Hey, I need you to get to Florida”. Can you do it? Sure you can. It’ll likely take you a while, you’ll probably get lost, but eventually you’ll make it. Now, let’s say someone says “Hey, I need you to get to Florida. Here’s the address and a GPS”. Can you get there now? Of course. You’ve got directions. Your chosen plan is your direction. You CAN do it on your own, but it’s much easier when you have a map.
There are many low carb plans to chose from. Some of the biggest, or most well known, plans are Atkins, South Beach, Paleo, Protein Power, The Zone, and CAD or Carb Addicts Diet. It’s up to you to do some research on what plan is best for you. Visit this link to see some information about the most popular plans.
Once you see a plan that looks like it will work for you, find a copy of the book. I can’t stress enough home important this is. You need to have a full understanding of how your plan works in order to be able to follow it successfully. While there is information about every plan available online, the entire text of the book is not available, and online summaries are not a replacement for the book.
Still not sure on a plan? There are several things that you can do to get started while you continue your search for the perfect plan for you.
- Cut out sugary drinks. Sodas and juices contain a LOT of sugars, and are a lot of rather empty calories. If you are a soda addict, try switching to a diet variety. While still not an ideal choice by any means, they’re a step in the right direction. If you’re feeling really bold, try making the switch to just water. I know it’s less than exciting, but your body will thank you.
- Incorporate more vegetables. Now listen, I’m NOT telling you to eat more French fries here. I’m talking about non starchy veggies – greens (lettuces, spinach, kale, etc.), bell peppers, onions, cauliflower, broccoli, avocado…you can click here for a list of good for you veggies, listed from lowest in carb count to the highest. If you are eating a lot of vegetables that live toward the bottom of that list, try swapping some of them out for ones further up. Try new things! You might find out you actually LIKE some of them!
- Eliminate highly processed foods, and replace with whole foods. Instead of having a piece of apple pie, just have an apple. Skip the fruity pebbles and have some eggs for breakfast. If your favorite snack as an ingredient list a mile long, it’s probably terrible for you.
- Ditch the “light” or “low calorie” labeled foods. Compare labels. For example, look at peanut butter. Grab a jar of “light” and a jar of regular. Turn them around and look at the nutritional information label. The “light” version has triple the amount of sugar as the regular, and only slightly less fat. Nut butters are a source of GOOD fats, and the regular peanut butter is a FAR better choice than is light cousin. Most “light” or “lower calorie” versions of foods have a HUGE amount of sugar added to make up for the lack of taste. you aren’t doing yourself any favors by having them.
Those simple steps will get you moving down the right path. Find your plan, and follow it to the letter. It’s not about being perfect all the time, but about remaining consistent over the long haul.