A low carb diet does not mean deprivation. On the contrary: after the first few weeks, you will start enjoying your food like you never have before!
“I don’t know how you can stand being on a low carb diet, especially during the holidays,” a friend recently commented. “You must have iron willpower. I’m sure you feel so deprived!”
Actually, I don’t. Really. I eat extremely well these days, and I love what I eat. Just as importantly, I love that my delicious low carb diet enables me to stay at a healthy weight effortlessly, with no hunger. I love that I don’t suffer blood sugar highs and lows. I have good, steady energy. I sleep great.
Even more importantly, and while nothing in life is guaranteed of course, it’s good to know that when sticking with a low carb diet I’m doing the best that I can to prevent or at least greatly delay terrible diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, and even alzheimer’s.
People assume that low carb means deprivation
People who eat a high carb diet tend to assume that giving up carbs is the end of the world. In fact, for many newly diagnosed diabetics, the main concern is not preventing the ravages that high blood sugar causes in the human body. Many of them are greatly concerned with being able to continue eating their favorite foods, which are inevitably high in carbs.
“I can’t live without chocolate” they will say. Or cake, cookies, bread – whatever their favorite high carb food might be.
I think many of us can relate. I too, at first, thought that giving up my favorite carb – bread – would be like a death sentence.
Fast forward five years. Suprise! I’m still alive and kicking, and more importantly, I don’t miss bread at all anymore.
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Starting a low carb diet is hard, but then it gets much better
I won’t lie to you – starting a low carb diet is very difficult, especially if you love carbs (and most of us who develop blood sugar trouble do love our carbs). The first few weeks do require iron willpower. But once you’re past the first 2-3 weeks, things start getting much better. Your cravings slowly disappear.
As it turns out, when you don’t consume junky carbs, you don’t crave them. And eventually, you lose your taste for them altogether. These days, two squares of 90% cocoa Lindt chocolate are an amazing treat and have just the right level of sweetness. When I recently tasted a peanut butter fudge that my daughter made, which was not low carb, I thought it was way too sweet and that natural, unsweetened peanut butter actually tastes way better.
On a low carb diet, you learn to prefer fatty over sweet
So yes, when you’re on a low carb diet, you can absolutely retrain your tastebuds to prefer foods that are not as sweet.
In addition, many of us low carbers find that when we eat a high-fat diet, our cravings for sweets are replaced by cravings for fat. This is a good thing: natural fats are actually good for us. The only fats to avoid are trans fats and seed oils (soybean, canola etc.).
Whereas in the past I would have had a small lean steak with a large baked potato, now I have a big well marbled steak with a side of creamed spinach. It’s just as tasty, if not more so, and allows my blood sugar to remain stable.
There are so many great low carb recipes
Just Google “low carb recipes” or “keto recipes” and you’ll discover a world of amazing, delicious, satisfying recipes that are suitable for a low carb diet. If you must, you can even have baked goods and sweets. You can bake cakes and cookies with almond flour and coconut flour and sweeten them with sugar alcohols or with stevia.
I still believe that on a low carb diet we should focus on real food and minimize sweets – even low carb sweets – but in moderation, there’s no reason not to include low carb sweets in your menu, and since they won’t jack up your blood sugar, it should be easier to exercise portion control with low carb sweets and baked goods.
Give it a chance!
So give this low carb diet a chance. It will be very difficult the first 2-3 weeks, but soon, very soon, you will stop craving starches and sweets, and will deeply enjoy your yummy, fatty, filling and satisfying meals, and your much improved health and better weight control.