Low-carbohydrate diet

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A low-carbohydrate diet is a nutritional plan that limits the consumption of carbohydrates while emphasizing the intake of proteins, fats, and vegetables. Low-carbohydrate diets are popular for weight loss, improved blood sugar control, and other health benefits. There are various types of low-carbohydrate diets, including the Atkins diet, ketogenic diet, and paleo diet.

Types of low-carbohydrate diets[edit | edit source]

  • Atkins diet: A phased approach to carbohydrate restriction, gradually increasing carbohydrate intake while monitoring weight loss progress.
  • Ketogenic diet: A very low-carbohydrate, high-fat diet that aims to induce a metabolic state called ketosis.
  • Paleo diet: A diet based on the presumed eating habits of early humans, emphasizing whole foods and eliminating grains, legumes, and processed foods.
  • Low-carb, high-fat (LCHF) diet: A diet that restricts carbohydrates while prioritizing healthy fats and moderate protein intake.

Benefits[edit | edit source]

Low-carbohydrate diets may provide the following benefits:

  • Weight loss: Many studies have shown that low-carbohydrate diets can be more effective for weight loss than low-fat or low-calorie diets.[1]
  • Improved blood sugar control: Low-carbohydrate diets can help regulate blood sugar levels and improve insulin sensitivity in people with type 2 diabetes.[2]
  • Reduced appetite: Low-carbohydrate diets can lead to reduced hunger, allowing for easier calorie restriction and weight loss.[3]

Risks and considerations[edit | edit source]

Low-carbohydrate diets may have potential risks and considerations, including:

  • Nutrient deficiencies: Restricting certain food groups may lead to deficiencies in essential vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin B and calcium.
  • Short-term side effects: Some individuals may experience flu-like symptoms during the initial adaptation period, commonly referred to as the "keto flu" in ketogenic diets.
  • Long-term health effects: The long-term effects of a low-carbohydrate diet on heart health and overall mortality are not yet fully understood, and further research is needed.[4]

Summary[edit | edit source]

A diet low in carbohydrates with a net carbohydrate content that is generally below 130 grams per day can be considered low carbohydrate while the a ketogenic diet requires a much lower net carbohydrate content of about 20-30 per day.

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Dieting Diet - Cuisine - Dietitian - Hunger - Leptin - Meal - Nutrition - Obesity : Staple food
Types Ketogenic diet - Low carbohydrate diet - Weight loss diet
  By food ingredients Omnivore - Entomophagy - Pescetarian - Plant-based
Regional diets Western - Mediterranean - Sustainable diets - Low carbon - Planetary
Religious diets Buddhist - Christian - Hindu - Islamic - Jain - Jewish - Rastafari - Sikh
 Vegetarianism and veganism   Dried fruit - Fruitarianism - Meat analogue - Milk substitute - Raw vegan - Tofu - Semi-vegetarianism
Supplement diets Bodybuilding supplements  - Meal replacement - Therapeutic food - Non-solid diets - Liquid diets - Very-low-calorie diet
Misc.topics Food pyramid - Fruits & Veggies – More Matters - Healthy eating pyramid - Latin American Diet Pyramid - French paradox - Mediterranean Diet Pyramid - MyPlate - MyPyramid - Vegetarian Diet Pyramid

References[edit | edit source]


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Contributors: Prab R. Tumpati, MD