The low carb diet is one of those fad diets that is making a comeback every so often. The reason it has such incredible stamina is that it actually works. Is it the healthiest diet in the world? Probably not — when you deprive yourself of a basic food group, you limit nutrition. But done correctly and for a reasonable time, it can be a powerful tool in the battle of the bulge
To produce the desired results in the early stages of a low carb diet, reduce carbohydrate intake to the point where you wonder ketosis. During this stage the body switches from burning consumed carbohydrates for energy to stored fat. Typically, this requires a reduction of your carb intake to around 20 grams per day for about three days. It is keto strips you can buy from pharmacies to measure whether you have reached ketosis.
Of course, to be successful on a low carb diet, you must know where to look for the carb count. This is where you need to be conscious of reading nutrition labels placed on the sides of the foods in the grocery store. Usually beef, poultry, eggs, and most hard cheeses (such as cheddar) are low in carbohydrates, whereas foods like potatoes, fruit, bread, and pre-processed foods (chips, cookies, etc) is extremely high.
The period of ultra-low carbs (20 grams or less) must be observed for only about two weeks. After that, most low carb diets recommend a slow process of adding low GI (glycemic index) carbohydrates back into the diet. Typically this process would go like this: 25 grams a day for the third week, 30 grams of the fourth, and so on. The scale and the mirror would be the ultimate arbiter of when this period of addition should end or be reduced.
The types of carbohydrates you choose to eat on a low carb diet is as important as how many. Each carbohydrates are not the same, and will not have the same effect on the body. For example, although a white potato and sweet potato could have similar nutrition facts when it comes to carbohydrates and calories, sweet potato clearly the better choice because it has a low glycemic index factor. This simply means it is harder for the body to digest and carbohydrates are not immediately shuttled into a stored fat area. Other good carbs are high in fiber vegetables, brown rice and oatmeal. Located in the references below is a list of some low GI foods, perfect for the ongoing stages of a low carb diet.