Low-Carb Vegetarian? Yes, It’s Possible!
A vegetarian diet is known for its immense health benefits. However, what can be challenging is finding a diet that’s low in carbs while being vegetarian. For long, the dietary requirements of vegetarians seemed to have revolved around complex carbs and fibre over proteins, a perception that is fast changing now.
The good news is that a low-carb vegetarian or plant-based diet can be fairly easy to maintain if one knows the right foods to eat. Moving towards a low-carb vegetarian diet means cutting back on carbohydrates such as grains, legumes, fruits, and starchy vegetables like potatoes. So, what does a low-carb vegetarian diet consist of?
Foods to Include
Tofu and tempeh, dairy products like cottage cheese, string cheese, full-fat Greek yogurt, and aged cheese like feta or Parmesan, eggs, nuts such as almonds, walnuts, and pecans, seeds like pumpkin seeds, flaxseeds, and chia seeds, non-starchy vegetables like kale, spinach, broccoli, brussels sprouts, and cauliflower, low-carb fruits like avocado, berries, olives, and tomatoes.
Foods to Avoid
Starchy vegetables like potatoes, peas, corn, and squash, grains like rice, quinoa, and oats, all forms of sugar including white sugar, brown sugar, maple syrup, honey, and agave nectar, most fruits, and juices containing added sugar.
Making Low-Carb Vegetarian Work
The key to following a low-carb vegetarian diet is to ensure adequate protein intake. While most plant-based foods are rich in carbs and fibre, it may be essential to come up with creative ways of incorporating protein into your diet. Some low-carb vegetarian protein sources include tofu and tempeh, eggs, nuts, seeds, and dairy products.
Another strategy to consider when following a low-carb vegetarian diet is meal planning. Planning meals beforehand not only helps in achieving dietary goals but also eliminates the guesswork of what to eat.
Finally, exercise is just as important as diet when it comes to maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Incorporating an exercise routine into your daily routine is an excellent complement to low-carb vegetarianism.
In conclusion, a low-carb vegetarian or plant-based diet is an excellent option for those looking towards a healthy and balanced lifestyle. Focus on incorporating high-protein foods while eliminating starchy veggies, grains, and added sugars, and before you know it, you’ll be reaping the benefits that this way of eating has to offer.