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This is how to make Low-Carb Diet Guide for Beginners

From Atkins to the ketogenic diet, low-carb eating has some serious staying power in the diet world. Check out this guide if you’re curious about how this eating approach may aid diabetes management, weight loss, and other purported health benefits. For starters, know that what’s low carbohydrate for one person isn’t for another. “There’s no medical definition of what low-carb is,” says Columbus, Ohio–based Kelly Schmidt, RD.

Basically, it’s reducing the number of carbs you eat from your norm. In general, however, a low-carb diet may include 50 to 100 grams (g) of carbohydrates per day, she says. Below that is considered very-low-carb, such as the ketogenic diet, while 100 to 200 g of carbohydrates per day is a moderate-carb diet.

You probably hear the most about low-carb eating for weight loss, but for some people, the approach could also help optimize their health, says Schmidt. “Research shows that women who are obese or have metabolic problems [may] do better hormonally on lower carbs,” says Schmidt, pointing out that other outcomes of the diet can include better sleep, mental clarity, and increased satiety.right up arrow.
As low-carb dietitian Franziska Spritzler, RD, who’s based in Orange County, California, points out, when you cut back on carbs, blood sugar and insulin levels generally go down, which can be a good thing for A1C, or the two- to three-month average of blood sugar levels. This may also help with weight loss, another common goal for people with type 2 diabetes.

These types of benefits may be reaped almost immediately. Past research shows that people who ate three lower-carb meals (of less than 30 percent carbs each) reduced their insulin resistance by more than 30 percent compared with people who consumed higher-carb meals (60 percent carbs).right up arrow Further research indicates that insulin resistance can be improved with a low-carb diet in just one month.right up arrow
You can see the results, too. One small randomized clinical trial on older adults with obesity found that, compared with a low-fat diet, a very low carb diet shaved off 3 times more visceral fat, a type of belly fat that hugs organs and is linked to disease. The low-carb group also lost 9.7 percent of total fat compared with just 2 percent in the low-fat followers.right up arrow A meta-analysis also concluded that in obese people, a low-carb diet reduced fat over the course of a year (but not body weight), with the greatest benefits seen in a very-low-carb diet.

That said, there isn’t an agreement that a low-carb diet is superior to any other kind of diet or that it’s healthier long term. A review that looked at the diet among those with diabetes noted that when it comes to weight loss, a low-carb diet performs no better than other higher-carb diets; and that it doesn’t produce better glycemic control, either.right up arrow Another report also found that over one year, those on a low-carb diet lost weight faster than those on a low-fat one, but after a year, weight loss and A1C levels (an average of blood glucose over about three months) were remarkably similar Separate from pregnancy, consider your lifestyle. If you’re someone who does intense CrossFit-style workouts, a low-carb diet may not fuel you properly, says Schmidt.

And the things weighing on you matter, too. “Anyone in a stressful state, like a divorce or dealing with a death in the family, needs carbs to support their adrenal system,” she notes.

As for if you’re dealing with health issues, defer to your doctor. For instance, if you have kidney disease, you also want to talk to your doctor about appropriate protein intake. If you have heart disease, you can still go low carb, but you’re best off opting for monounsaturated fats (avocados, nuts, and olive oil) over saturated fats (butter and red meat). Indeed, this holds true for everyone, regardless of heart disease status.

Although there is some data that suggests a low-carb diet that contains more saturated fat than current recommendations did not increase “bad” LDL cholesterol (a risk factor for heart disease), you should still pay attention to the quality of foods in your low-carb diet.right up arrow Everyone’s cholesterol levels respond differently on a low-carb diet, so if yours are going up, switch to unsaturated sources of fats, Spritzler recommends. “In general, this is a diet most people can do. If you have a chronic condition, work with a doctor who understands low-carbohydrate diets to monitor you,” she adds.
Last, if you have a history of eating disorders, a low-carb diet (or any eating plan that is restrictive) can be risky, nutrition and mental health experts agree.

Source: everydayhealth

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