When it comes to healthy eating, there are many different routes one can take. For diabetics and people suffering from insulin resistance or even those who want to lose weight in an effective manner, cutting down on carbohydrates can help. This is especially true of white, starchy carbs such as flour, rice, and potatoes. Lowering carb intake is a tried and trusted method to get your weight under control and moving in the right direction, and it can also help to maintain healthy insulin levels. Thankfully, there are plenty of great low-carbohydrate food options that still taste amazing.
If you are into low-carb cooking, chances are that your refrigerator is going to be packed with cauliflowers. And that’s because this humble vegetable is truly one of the best low-carb foods around. I bet you thinking that there is only so much you can do with it, right? Well, you’d be wrong.
It’s just a case of thinking outside the box! When you make that change to a low-carb way of eating, one of the first things you will most likely prepare is cauliflower rice, or cauli-rice as low-carbers like to call it. And yes, it’s the perfect substitute for normal rice in many dishes.
The great thing about this low-carb substitute is that it is cheap, easy to prepare and while it might sound boring, it isn’t! Most supermarkets now stock cauli-rice which means you don’t need to spend time grating florets of the vegetable.
To prepare it, lightly fry in some healthy oils, preferably olive oil, season, add other flavors if you’d like and serve with your favorite dishes. At just 2.5 grams of carbs per cup, cauli-rice has up to 95% fewer carbs than regular rice.
For lovers of all things Italian, like pasta or spaghetti, moving towards a low-carb lifestyle can be tough. And that’s easy to understand. There is very little in the world that tops a great bowl of pasta, right?
But there are low-carb alternatives! And to start, you could try the humble zucchini, especially as a replacement for spaghetti. Again, like cauli-rice, this is so simple to prepare. In fact, it’s going to take around five minutes in total.
Create ribbons of zucchini using a spiraler and simply fry them in olive oil with a touch of garlic and some seasoning. Nothing could be simpler. You could even boil them for a minute if you are watching your fat intake and want to steer clear of olive oil.
A cup of cooked spaghetti has around 43 grams of carbs in it, while a cup of zucchini noodles or zoodles as they are often called has just 4 grams of carbs. It also contains far fewer calories.
Another staple food the world over is that of potatoes. And you would think that trying to substitute potatoes in a meal might be difficult. Well, when it comes to creating an alternative to mashed potato, it’s cauliflower that you can turn to once again.
Cauli-mash is simple to make, extremely tasty and a great replacement for mashed potato. And it contains almost five times fewer carbs than its starchy counterpart. In fact, a cup of cauli-mash has just eight grams of carbs in it.
Again, it’s easy to prepare and can be flavored in so many ways. Simply cook some cauliflower in water until tender, drain and mash. Drain again and add seasoning and butter for a velvety finish. It lends itself to many other flavors as well (hint: parmesan cheese).
Coconut and Almond Flour
For those who love to prepare food from scratch, especially baked goods, flour is a key ingredient. But it’s filled with the kinds of carbs you might want to steer clear of.
In fact, a cup of flour is jam-packed with 95 grams of carbohydrates! Luckily, there are lower carb alternatives. These come in the form of coconut and almond flour, both of which are excellent substitutes when baking.
And the numbers? Well, for a cup of coconut flour, you looking at around 65 grams of carbs. Almond flour is a lot lower at 19 grams of carbs but it does have more calories, so remember to take that into consideration when choosing between the two.
The humble lettuce leaf is an excellent low-carb substitute, especially if you love tacos or wraps. They even have that awesome crunch! Of course, when it comes to calories and carbs, lettuce leaves are low in both, so you can eat plenty of them. Just watch the filling!
One of the best sugar alternatives you can get, this plant-based sweeter comes from the leaves of the stevia plant. It does have a bit of an aftertaste, however, but that doesn’t take too long to get used to. Without a doubt, this is one of the greatest low-carb sweeteners out there.