Have you been following the keto diet, or are you struggling to find the ideal no-carb diet? Well, it is a challenging task since it lacks options for you to choose from. But your wait is now over!
Firstly, let's take a peek at what no carb food is and how it can serve of importance for you:
A recipe that claims to be a zero-carb food can lower your blood sugar while managing your blood pressure levels. Adding it into your diet will help you keep your cholesterol levels under control too. Besides, people seeking to curb their weight or diabetes thrive best with such foods.
If you've been dealing with any of the issues you just read about, no-carb food could do you good. And that'll be evident in the results!
So, let's go ahead and get you on the program!
How to Follow the No-Carb Food Diet
Getting your hands on the recipes and directions is easy. But how do you keep your diet in check and make sure you're on the right track?
Well, it might sound like a challenging task in the beginning. But with time, you will get the hang of it.
Let's see what we're signing up for!
Know What Carbs Are
Remember studying about the balanced diet in primary school? Well, it's time to hit rewind! Carbs are nothing but the carbohydrates on the chart. They are in the form of molecules and contain atoms of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen.
It is one of the three macronutrients of the nutrition world, the other two being fat and protein. But even within the term "carbs", we have three further classifications.
Take a look; you might even be familiar with them!
- Sugars: these are the short-chained carbohydrates like glucose, fructose, sucrose
- Starches: these are the long-chained glucose molecules that the digestive system further breaks down into simple glucose.
- Fiber: The carb type that bacteria of our digestive system break down. Some of them are useful, unlike others, and could also be vital to our overall health.
The whole purpose of carbs is to provide us with sufficient fuel for our bodies to function. While most carbs transform into glucose for energy, some transform to fat. This fat is what acts as a store of energy, and if unburnt, it stays.
So, the best way to get around your no carb food list is to know what classifies as carbs.
Understand the difference between total carbs and net carbs
Once you know what your carbs are, it's time to come down to some mathematics.
Have you approach a dietitian and heard them use the terms "net carbs" or "total carbs"?
Well, do not confuse the two because they stand for their own meanings!
- Total Carbs: as the term suggests, these are the total number of carbs you consume in one day.
- Net Carbs: these are the total grams of carbohydrates present in a food. However, that excludes the fiber and sugar alcohols grams since our body does not digest them.
So, the next time you go over a recipe, make sure to get the technical terms right!
Check the food labels for carbs
We can't always cook from scratch. While you can still manage the main meals, setting your snacks straight can be tiring.
Sometimes, we just have to buy ready-made snacks from the market. But that doesn't mean you need to cheat on your no carb food diet plan!
All you have to do is check the table of contents and nutrition present on the labels on the back.
Bring your own food (to parties)
Now you may wonder: what about the times when you're neither buying a snack nor cooking for yourself?
You could be going over for a party, and you can hardly ever tell what's got what.
The solution is simple but might sound extra to you at first. It's hidden in carrying your own food! That way, you know your count.
Pro tip: alternatively, you could also eat before you leave so you're full enough not to be tempted!
Customized restaurant meal
We now come to the most challenging part. Restaurants and cafes have some pretty mouth-watering delicacies, and sometimes, you just need to satiate that craving.
Even so, there's no need for you to break your resolution!
Several outlets have now started serving customized meals, so you neither have to compromise on your taste nor diet.
The No Carb Food List
Sticking to a diet is all well and good if you know what to eat. With a list of zero-carb foods, it's easier to make meals, snacks, and even go out! While it may seem like common sense, many of these foods may not even have occurred to you. So, take a look!
Meat and Poultry
Most fresh meat falls under the zero-carb category as a protein and fat-heavy food, perfect for any keto diet. However, it's vital to source your meats correctly. It should come from grass-fed, pasture-raised, or wild animals.
Here's a list of some zero-carb meat options:
- Beef (0.9 grams)
- Chicken (0 grams)
- Lamb (0 grams)
- Duck (0 grams)
- Turkey (0.1 gram)
- Venison (0 grams)
- Veal (0 grams)
- Pork (0 grams)
- Bison (0 grams)
- Organ Meats such as kidney, heart, and tongue (0 grams)
Sometimes, you'll have to give in and consume some processed meat.
- Sausage (0.7 grams)
- Pepperoni (0 grams)
- Salami (2.4 grams)
- Hot Dogs (4.2 grams)
- Deli Meat such as Turkey, Ham, Chicken, Roast Beef (2.3 grams)
- Corned Beef (0.5 grams)
When picking your meat, you'll need to make sure it is:
- 100% grass-fed
Make sure to read the label to prevent consuming extra carbs in the form of sugars, spices, and flavorings.
Dairy is high in fats and seemingly in carbs, so finding a suitable dairy product to consume can be difficult. However, here are some carb-free dairy products for you to consume!
- Butter and Ghee (0.1 gram)
- Soft-ripened cheese (0.5 gram)
- Hard-aged cheese (1 gram)
- Plain Greek Yogurt (3 grams)
- Heavy Cream (0.5 grams)
Even while consuming dairy products, it's essential to keep quality in mind. Many producers often use preservatives, chemicals, and other hormones to improve the taste or longevity of the products. Look for added sugars, the production process, and any other chemicals involved.
Avoid anything that contains too many chemicals on the label!
Seafood is yet another high-protein option. There are tons of zero-carb seafood options such as:
- Salmon (0 grams)
- Cod (0 grams)
- Tuna (0 grams)
- Catfish (0. 6 grams)
- Bass (0.4 grams)
- Swordfish (0 grams)
- Mackerel (0 grams)
- Sardine (0 grams)
- Halibut (0 grams)
- Haddock (0 grams)
- Sole (0 grams)
- Flounder (0 grams)
While you're buying fish, you'll need to watch out for a few things. Always buy fish that comes in a BPA-free can. BPA is a chemical that is said to seep into foods which is something you don't want.
Secondly, be careful of how much fish you eat. These days, fish may have consumed toxins and mercury in quantities you hadn't expected. Larger fish who consume smaller fish tend to have higher levels of toxicity and mercury. So, keep this in mind when eating any kind of fish.
While fruits seem like they have a lot of carbs just waiting to ruin your diet, there are a ton of them with zero carbs. Some of your options include
- Apples (0 grams)
- Avocadoes (0 grams)
- Bananas (0 grams)
- Cantaloupe (0 grams)
Beware of the sugar content in fruits. When on a keto diet, you're advised to stay away from fruits because of their incredible sugar content – however natural.
It's always best to opt for organic fruits. The increasingly common usage of fertilizers and other chemicals in the cultivation of fruits means there's a chance of you ingesting some. Always go organic when in doubt!
Most vegetables are low in calories and rich in minerals, vitamins, and nutrients. However, there are a few vegetables that contain the required amount of carbs to be considered zero carb!
- Mushrooms (1 gram)
- Raw Spinach (1 gram)
- Lettuce (less than 1 gram)
- Garlic (1 gram)
- Celery (1 gram)
Many vegetables such as tomatoes and onions do contain fewer carbs than most other vegetables.
However, they still have upwards of 1 gram of total carbohydrates, so they technically cannot be called zero-carb. When choosing vegetables, opting for these options is still an option, but keep in mind the increase in carbs you're consuming!
Apart from the carb count, vegetables are best when grown organically. Preservatives, fertilizers, and other chemicals are dangerous and often used in the cultivation process. Be careful when you're purchasing vegetables and go organic when in doubt!
While water is the main beverage you'll be drinking, sometimes mixing it up is necessary. Here are a few options for when you're tired of all the water!
- Coffee (0 grams)
- Tea (0.2 grams)
- Unsweetened natural flavored sparkling water (0 grams)
- Naturally flavored still water (0 grams)
- Soda water (0 grams)
- Sugar-free soda (0 grams)
While most beverages are zero-carb, it's good to keep an eye out for what goes into your flavoring. With the keto diet gaining more popularity, companies are eager to cash in, so they might be compromising on quality while giving you carb-free drinks.
For example, while diet coke has zero carbs, its sweet flavor comes from a chemical sweetener. The last thing you want on a keto diet is any harmful chemicals in your body.
Nuts and Seeds
Nuts and seeds are your best friends on a keto diet. They're low in net carbs and high in healthy fats, so they're a great addition to any meal!
- Pecans (1 gram)
- Brazil Nuts (1 gram)
- Flax Seeds (1 gram)
- Hemp Seeds (1 gram)
When on a ketogenic diet, or any other lifestyle, always consume nuts and seeds in moderation. They can slow down weight loss and even reverse any weight loss! However, in moderation, they're a great way to add nutrients to your lifestyle and stay healthy!
Fats and Oils
A zero-carb diet does not mean you can't use any oils while cooking! In fact, the oils and fats you use while cooking are the only true zero-carb options! While being excellent sources of nutrition through your keto diet, they allow you to maintain the level of nutrition you require.
Even while you're using oils and fats, it's essential to remember quality. Without high-quality oils, no zero-carb food is going to be worth the effort. Oils and fats can still be unhealthy without any carbs, so focus on buying high-quality ingredients.
Some options include:
- Olive Oil (0 grams)
- 100% grass-fed butter (0 grams)
- Ghee (0 grams)
- Avocado oil (0 grams)
- Coconut oil (0 grams)
- Lard (0 grams)
- Macadamia nut oil (0 grams)
- MCT oil (0 grams)
High-quality oils and fats do not contain the same level of chemicals while processing their products. Vegetable oils often have high levels of omega-6 fatty acids.
So, avoiding low-quality products and oils with high omega-6 fatty acids is a good option.
Some oils to avoid are:
- Soybean Oil
- Corn Oil
- Canola Oil
- Peanut Oil
Condiments and Spices
A low-carb diet doesn't mean compromising on taste. Since most condiments and seasonings are used in minimal quantities anyway, they fall into the low-carb or zero-carb category.
- Salt (0 grams)
- Black Pepper (0 grams)
- Oregano (0 grams)
- Rosemary (0 grams)
- Thyme (0 grams)
- Basil (0 grams)
- Dill (0 grams)
- Chives (0 grams)
- Cinnamon (0 grams)
- Chili Powder (0 grams)
When using seasoning, make sure to use single herbs. Blends often have sugar to increase the sweet flavor. So, even when using blends, make sure they list all their ingredients out.
Some condiments you can eat are:
- Mustard (5 grams per 100 grams)
- Vinegar (0 grams)
- Hot Sauces (1.8 grams per 100 grams)
- Sugar-free Mayo (0 grams)
Check the labels for all your condiments for added sugars. Avoid any condiments that contain canola oil. It's best to go for condiments with an avocado oil base or olive oil base.
Sugar in its typical form is not acceptable on a keto diet, so there are always sugar alternatives. After all, what's life without some cake?
- Stevia extract (usually in liquid or powder form) (0 grams)
- Monk fruit (usually in liquid or powder form) (0 grams)
- Erythritol (sugar alcohol) (0 grams)
- Swerve sweetener (mix of stevia or erythritol) (0 grams)
Sugar alcohols are a great addition to any ketogenic diet; however, some like Malitol can cause incredible digestive discomfort and diarrhea. It's also best to avoid any artificial sweeteners and sucralose.
While they are common sugar alternatives in many sugar-free foods, it's a sign of low quality and causes significant health risks!
Zero Carb Snacks
When you're on keto, there are times when you're just craving something light and easy to eat.
However, most snacks that are available on the market are either processed or extremely unhealthy. For the most part, even the healthier-looking options like fruit juices have added sugars and preservatives.
If you're looking for the best zero-carb snacks for your cravings, then here's a list so that you don't have to read another label!
Mini frittatas (8.2 grams in total)
These are easy to make and store in your fridge. Not only are they delicious, but a lightly filling snack so that you won't have to reach for anything else in the meantime!
Veggie Sticks with Nut Butter (0 grams)
A zero-carb vegetable like celery with low to zero carb nut butter like peanut butter makes an excellent filling snack regardless of your cravings!
Lettuce sandwich wraps (2 grams per wrap)
If you have an unexpected craving for sandwiches, then simply using lettuce to wrap around some filling is a great low-carb, easy snack.
Guacamole (4 grams total)
Not only is guacamole keto-friendly, but it's also portable! Instead of the usual chips, you can dip veggie sticks to make it as low-carb as possible!
Smoothies (9 grams total)
If you've been turning your nose up at celery juices and avocado smoothies, then it's time to stop. They're a great zero-carb, filling, healthy, keto-friendly snack to enjoy on the go!
Mixed Nuts (21 grams per 100 grams)
Nuts are incredibly keto-friendly and even zero-carb! A mix of your own favorite nuts or a pre-packaged option makes a great snack. Just don't eat too many!
Olives (6 grams per 100 grams)
Olives are the greatest snack on a keto-diet, zero-carb diet. You can stuff them with some zero-carb cheeses and get snacking!
Flax crackers (2 grams)
flax seeds are a great zero-carb option. When paired with a zero-carb cheese, it becomes the ultimate zero-carb snack for you to enjoy!
Egg muffins (1.5 grams total)
If you're not up for crackers, then egg muffins will be your best friend. They're delicious and hit the spot!
Pepperoni Slices (0 grams)
As long as you avoid meats that are too heavily processed, pepperoni slices are a great zero-carb snack to tide you over!
Using the No Carb Food List
By now, you've got your hands on some delicious healthy recipes on the no carb food list. But here comes the hard part: staying true to it!
The trick lies in straying away from temptations and cheat days. While that's easier said than done, let's carry on and see how you can incorporate your plans the best.
While shopping groceries
Looking at the recipes from the list, you have a brief idea of what counts as no carb foods. So, the next time you go shopping for groceries, make sure to stick to the ones from above.
You can hardly eat the wrong thing if you don't buy it, to begin with, right?
When eating out
You already know a bit about the customized menus and meals that restaurants have started to offer. So, make sure to give the right specifications while ordering.
In cases when you're going out to a party or for a picnic, be sure to carry your own food. That'll cut down the chances of you breaking away from your routine.
Following keto diet with ease
The keto diet can often be hard to constrain yourself with because it is very restricting in itself. You need to be very careful of the things you eat and keep track all the time.
However, if you put your mind to it, following the keto diet with ease will seem like a reachable summit. It'll replace the carb intake with fat up to 70% to 80%.
With the right motivation, it will help you limit your carb intake, thereby moderating your fat and protein too!
Reaching specific weight-loss/keto targets
Accomplishing your goals and resolution gives us the kind of satisfaction that defeats all else. However, the journey is not an easy one. Perhaps, that's what adds to the joy!
You can always rely on a few helpers that will make sure you stick to your keto target. For example, you can start by investing in a good food processor. You could even consider keto-meal prep services because they know this deal the best.
Cooking in batches and incorporating several veggies into your diet also helps just as much.
Pro tip: if you combine the diet with regular exercise or even some form of cardio, your results will show up faster.
We hope that these mouth-watering recipes do away with your assumption that healthy food cannot be tasty.
Along with the set of tips you read about, sticking to the no carb food list will be much easier. The hardest part will be adjusting to the new routine. But keep reminding yourself of the goals and targets you wish to achieve.
The very fact that you're thinking of taking a step towards a better lifestyle says a lot about your attitude. So now, don't step back. It's your time to shine!
No-carb foods are meals that avoid and eliminate digestible carbs from your diet. So, for your meal to be perfectly no-carb but energizing, eat protein or fat-based food like meat, fish, eggs, etc.
A perfect no-carb food would often resemble a keto diet. It'll help you cut down on your carb intake and rely more on fat-based calories.
Yes, following a no-carb diet can help you lose weight. It typically facilitates rapid weight loss. You will see the results in the first few weeks, more so because of the loss of water weight. Since every carb in grams holds about three grams of water, the drop will be highly effective.
Generally, yes. The keto diet keeps your carb intake count below 50 grams per day. So, you could consider no carb food as your way into ketosis. However, a sudden change in this lifestyle could damage your health.
So, make sure to consult a dietitian, physician, or professional before making this decision. They will help you out with the smooth transition between diet plans as well.
It's not possible for certain food groups to contain no carbs at all, so it can be confusing to look for zero-carbs. However, zero-carbs or no carbs does not mean it has to be a complete zero; the foods just have to contain less than 1 gram of total carbohydrates.
The total carbohydrate count is not for the whole portion, rather per serving. A whole wheel of cheese is bound to have more than 1 gram of carbs, but one serving can certainly have less than 1 gram of carbs!
An entirely zero-carb diet is one taken on by those on a ketogenic lifestyle. It involves high amounts of protein and fat to be consumed over carbs. However, it's not just those on keto! People with diabetes often require zero-carb meals or food options as well!
It doesn't mean entirely eliminating carbs from your diet; it just involves eating extremely few carbs a day!