Low Carb Diet Shopping List
In succession to the series for staples foods you should include in your diet list (see last time’s article: High Protein Diet Shopping List), this list includes the best quality carbohydrates to allow you to eliminate excess carbs which have little to no nutritional value.
The important thing to note is that we all need carbohydrates in order to have maximal energy during our workouts. Carbs relate directly to the amount of sugar that we have in our blood which acts as the primary source of immediate energy when our muscles demand it. Although it is possible to break down fat and proteins as a source of energy these forms are not as quickly broken down.
So when is the best time to have carbohydrates and what kind of carbohydrates are best to include in one’s diet?
In terms of keeping body fat down the best time to eat carbs include the morning and shortly before and after your workouts. You will know when your carb intake it not sufficient enough particularly when you see that your feel your energy level drop and get tired during the day even though your previous nights sleep was adequate.
Let’s look at the low carb diet shopping list…
Low Carb Diet A+ Shopping List
Oatmeal – The slow cook variety is significantly less processed and has more nutrients than the instant oatmeal, but either way oatmeal is a power carbohydrate source because of its ability to digest slowly and provide a constant source of energy. If you go for the instant variety pay close attention to the sugar content as you want to make sure that there isn’t more than 40grams of carbs per serving.
Fruit – Although all fruit is great at the top of your list you want to include berries like blueberries & raspberries for their antioxidant & fiber content as well as bananas for pre and post workout energy supplementation. If you don’t buy organic at least aim for organic apples since they have been found to have the most pesticide residues.
Vegetables – Try and go for the widest spectrum of veggies as you can since all of them contain different benefits such as fiber, minerals and vitamins. Broccoli is at the top of the list along with garlic, spinach, peppers, carrots, cucumbers, beets, celery, etc.
Whole grain breads – Pretty obvious that breads which focus on whole grains are the best kind, just take a look out for glucose/fructose in the ingredient list, you want this as little as possible and aim for bread that has at least 3 grams of fiber per slice. Secret – look for rye loafs in your grocery store! Rye bread is usually lowest with preservatives and additives and yet contains a lot of fiber!
Yams/Sweet Potatoes – Full of vitamins and minerals and bonus of digesting slowly which means better possibility of your body burning it as energy rather than storing it as fat.
Brown and wild rice – far more nutritional than white rice, brown and wild long grain rice can sometimes be an acquired taste but you will notice a richer taste with vitamins and minerals like magnesium that is not found in white rice.
Quinoa – I came across this unique grain only several months ago and it has replaced rice in my diet simply because it tastes way better, has a good amount of proteins, fiber & magnesium and is super easy and quick to make. Search for it, you won’t regret it especially if you are one who is trying to have a gluten free diet.
High Fiber Cereal – I know these high fiber cereals usually taste like cardboard but there are some brands now that try and do a good balance of taste and fiber. Again look at the nutritional content and aim for at least 3-4 grams of fiber per serving and less than 40 grams of carbs. Kashi is definitely one of the best when it comes to taste and nutritional content.
Carbs to Stay Away From
Soda Pop & Most Juice You probably already know that soda drinks and most juices are full of sugar that you can really do without. Substitute with mineral water like Perrier (the one with natural lime flavour is awesome!) and any kind of tea (bonus for green tea).
Chips & Rice Cakes – Lots of simple carbohydrates that your body usually stores as fat.
Candy – Just sugar, stay away!
Ice cream/Frozen Yogurt – Although frozen yogurt seems like a healthier option than the cream in ice cream, they are usually very high in sugar content. I must admit ice cream is one of my weaknesses so I allow myself to splurge once or twice on the weekends.
Energy bars – Take a look at most energy bar content like Cliff Bars and Power Bars and you’ll see a very high carbohydrate/sugar content. Go for fruit smoothies instead, a much healthier option!
Low Carb Diet Shopping List: Conclusion
I hope you enjoyed this list for your healthy low carb diet plan, you will see a radical transformation in your energy levels and body fat ratio if you stick with this shopping list! Remember to focus on high fiber content and slow digesting varieties like yams instead of potatoes, or brown instead of white rice. I invite you to provide feedback, ask questions about this list by leaving a comment below…