We don’t always have to be eating healthy all the time. There are ways and means of both losing weight and improving your overall health. The slow-carb diet is one of these means, as it serves as a flexible eating plan. Through this plan, it is possible to reach your weight goals, while at the same time not having to stress over the occasional straying off your diet path.
Low-glycemic carbs, or slow carbs as they are often referred to when consumed most of the time, and coupled with exercises and specific supplements, can produce a multitude of benefits. Some of those benefits include weight loss, decreased appetite, lower blood sugar levels, and a reduction in cravings.
The slow-carb diet is the eating of low-glycemic foods for most of your meals in a given week. The diet was created by Tim Ferriss, and is detailed in his book “The 4-hour Body.”
According to Ferriss, by following the slow carb diet, an individual can lose up to twenty pounds of body fat in just thirty days. This is achieved through the optimizing of three main factors: exercise, diet, and a regimen of supplements.
It is vital that you keep in mind that the results of any low carb diet will vary from individual to individual. There is a various set of factors that come into play when determining the diets overall success such as the individuals initial weight, the type and frequency of workouts, the individuals overall health, and how strictly the individuals follows the diet itself.
In the slow carb diet, several main principles are to be followed:
- Six to seven days of the week, an individual is to only consume no-carbs or those carbs determined as low-glycemic. Low glycemic carb items include both vegetables and beans, while no-carb foods will include eggs, meat, fish, and those healthier fats such as oil and butter.
- Six to seven days of the week, avoid eating fruits and added sugar, and those items considered white carbs, including white bread, pasta, and breakfast cereals.
- At all times, avoid the drinking of any type of sugary drinks.
- It is suggested that when on this diet, you eat four meals a day. This factors out to eating once every four hours and no snacking in-between. In an effort to make the diet easier, it is also suggested that the same few meals are eaten over and over again.
- Allow yourself a cheat day. Pick only one day a week, and on that one day, allow yourself to eat anything that you want. This cheat day is only allowed with the caveat that you are following the diet on the other six days in the week.
Habits to Maximize Results
Although the following are not considered in with the principles above, they can prove to e beneficial habits in the overall maximizing of your success:
- Make it a routine to take cold showers.
- Within thirty minutes of waking in the morning, eat 30 grams of protein.
- Develop a three to four times a week exercise routine.
- Track your results by measuring your body fat, your total inches, and your weight each week.
- Slow down and enjoy your meal—take thirty minutes to eat.
- Those foods that you tend to indulge in and overeat should be kept out of your reach.
Types of Food to Eat
Now that we know what the slow carb diet is and the principles involved, the question now is—what types of foods are acceptable on a slow carb diet? The diet is based on the eating of primarily lean means, vegetables, and beans. It is vital not to consume fruit, refined carbs (bread, potatoes, pasta), added sugars, or sugary drinks.
That foods that are permitted and included are:
- Eggs or egg whites
- Chicken—specifically the breast or thigh
- Beef—grass-fed if you have access to it
- Fish—such as sardines or salmon
- Pork—just about any cut
- Beans and legumes—such as lentils, pinto beans, etc.
- Vegetables that are non-starchy—such as leafy greens (spinach, mustard, collards), cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, cabbage), mushrooms, peas, green beans, tomatoes, etc.
- Vegetables that are fermented (which also aid in gut health)—sauerkraut and kimchi
- Nuts (almonds, cashews, etc.) and seeds (pumpkin, flax, and chia)
- Low or no calorie beverages—such as coffee, water, tea and in some cases red wine in moderation.
- Condiments—including mustards, garlic, vinegar, salsa, and stevia
- Smalls amounts of fats—such as butter or oil (macadamia, avocado, coconut, or olive)
As for the items to eat at a typical meal, those should include a decent serving of protein foods, vegetables, legumes, and a small amount of fat or oil. In a nutshell, an individual is to eat from each of the main food groups ever four hours to equal out to four times a day. Remember, the idea is to keep your eating simple, but with that said, you are permitted to eat as much of those foods listed above as you want.
Types of Foods to Avoid
We now know what types of foods are allowed on the slow carb diet, however which foods are an absolute no-no? Can we eat oatmeal? Can we eat rice? The answer to both of these questions is a resounding NO! All types of “white carbs” as well as grains are not permitted in the six out of seven days of the diet. You will need to save these types of food for your cheat day.
Those foods that are definitely not allowed on the diet are:
- White bread
- Rice and grains
- Any and all fruit (with the exception of tomatoes and avocados)
- Cereals (including oatmeal and breakfast)
- Sweet deserts (such as cookies, cakes, etc.)
- Ice cream
- Breaded fried foods
- Sugary soft drinks and fruit juices
- White wine and beer (although red wine is permitted)
By following the slow carb diet six out of seven days a week, and allowing yourself one cheat day, you will soon see the resulting benefits. There is nothing wrong with eating healthy. However, if one can’t stick to their diet, they will not reap any of the rewards. With the slow carb diet, you are assured to be able to lose weight, balance blood sugars, decrease your appetite, and when it comes to your food bill, be able to save both time and money.