Healthy Low Carb Eating Plan

Carbohydrates should make up 45 to 65 percent of the average person's total daily calorie intake, according to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2010. For someone consuming 2,000 calories a day, this is about 225 to 325 grams. Low-carb diets often recommend a daily carb intake ranging between 50 and 150 grams, although some are more restrictive and limit carbs to less than 20 grams a day, especially during the initial phases of weight loss. On a low-carb eating plan, you need to limit carbohydrate-rich foods such as grains, fruits, some dairy products, sugar beverages and desserts. Non-starchy vegetables, an adequate amount of protein and healthy fats should be the foundation of your diet.


To start your day off right on a healthy low-carb eating plan, toast, bagels and breakfast cereals are out of the question. Instead, scrambled eggs with onions, cheese, bacon and cherry tomatoes are perfect choices. If you want to switch it up, you can prepare a spinach and red bell pepper omelet with goat cheese or smoked salmon or turkey slices rolled with cream cheese and vegetables. Depending on your carbohydrate allowance, you can include choices containing slightly more carbohydrates, such as peanut butter mixed with cottage cheese and berries or a smoothie made with low-carb unsweetened almond milk, a little bit of coconut milk, a few berries and almond butter.


Bringing your own lunch to work or school is the best strategy to help you stick to your low-carb eating plan. Salads are easy to make and a good way to help your meet your recommended vegetable intake. Prepare your salad with at least 1 to 2 cups of leafy greens and add other non-starchy vegetables, such as cucumber, tomatoes and green onions, to taste. Top your salad with 4 to 6 ounces of protein such as salmon, chicken, pork or beef. Alternatively, you can also add 2 to 3 hard-boiled eggs and 1 to 2 ounces of cheese. Add slices of avocado or a handful of nuts if you like. Drizzle your salad with extra-virgin olive oil and vinegar. All of these options are low in carb and provide you with an abundance of healthy nutrients.


Your dinner should include non-starchy vegetables, a protein source and some fat. You can serve onions, broccoli, cauliflower, green beans, bok choy, mushrooms or tomatoes, along with 4 to 6 ounces of protein from fish, seafood, poultry or meat. Cook your vegetables and protein with olive oil or add a drizzle of olive oil to your vegetables before serving to ensure you get enough healthy fat. Fat will help you feel satiated. You can also modify your favorite high-carb recipes into low-carb alternatives. For example, you can have low-carb pasta by replacing regular pasta with a low-carb variety or spaghetti squash. You can also prepare pizza on a low-carb tortilla or layer your pizza ingredients on slices of eggplants or on portabella mushroom caps. Ensure that you have enough vegetables, protein and fat combined at every dinner meal.


If your meals are well balanced, you should not feel too hungry between meals. However, if you need healthy low-carb snack ideas to keep you going between meals, try 1 to 2 ounces of cheese, 1 to 2 ounces of nuts, 1 to 2 tablespoons of nut butter, a few slices of deli meat, raw vegetables or tuna salad.