There are a lot of myths and mistaken beliefs surrounding the low-carb trend. Some people believe it’s a way of starving yourself. Some people believe it causes heart-attacks. Some people believe vegetarians can’t do it.
Some think it’s another fad diet put together by an ‘industry’ that cares about nothing but the bottom line and making sure their checkbooks stay fat!
Well I can tell you I was one of the miss-informed until I really opened my mind to the idea that low-carb eating isn’t just a fad or a trick or a high-risk way to trim down and lose weight. Low-carb eating is based on real science and proven results. Let’s talk about some of those myths and tackle them head-on, shall we?
Myth 1 – Low-Carb Eating is Unhealthy
If you cut carbs from your diet altogether, that’s unhealthy. If you eat low-carb and skip your vegetables (and fiber), that’s unhealthy. If you completely eliminate any nutrient from your diet, that’s unhealthy.
If you follow a well-balanced meal plan that cuts unnecessary carbs while increasing the elements you need to have energy and burn fat, you’ll be anything BUT unhealthy.
Myth 2 – Low-Carb Dieters Eat NO Carbs
Not true. In the New Atkins low carb diet you start Phase 1 with 20 net carbs per day. In Phase 2 you start increasing your carbs gradually by adding 5 net carbs each day until you reach your maximum carb tolerance level, known as ACE (Atkins Carbohydrate Equilibrium.) Our body needs healthy carbs, but we need much less than most of us eat.
The term “net carbs” refers to the amount of carbs offset by the fiber in the food. For instance, canned navy beans have 18 grams of carbohydrates and 6 grams of dietary fiber (per 1/2 cup serving) which is a net of 12 carbs per serving.
Myth 3 – Only Breads and Pastas Have Carbs
This is oh so not true. Carbs are hiding in just about every food you can imagine. You might be surprised to learn that most fruits contain a good serving of carbs. Vegetables contain carbs as well.
Some vegetables have a lot of carbs, some have a few. For example, white potatoes are a big carb culprit even though it’s a vegetable and considered healthy. These are the types of foods you’ll need to eliminate during the first phase of your low-carb diet. So, it’s not just the donuts and macaroni that can sabotage your weight loss goals.
Myth 4 – Only Supermodels Cut Carbs
In the movie The Devil Wears Prada, one of the staff at the fancy fashion magazine exclaims; “But she eats CARBS!” Contrary to the ‘starve yourself by cutting out carbs’ reputation that this diet may have gleaned, people of all walks of life are realizing the health benefits of cutting down on the unnecessary carbs in their diets.
Myth 5 – Cutting Carbs Will Leave You Starving
I told my neighbor about my low-carb lifestyle and she quickly replied; “I couldn’t do that, I’d be starving.” My reply back was; “Starving? I’ve never felt so full in my life!” Instead of feeling deprived, once you start eating low-carb you are more likely to feel more satisfied than you’ve ever felt during any other diet in your life.
I mean who wouldn’t feel good after eating protein-packed meals, a variety of delicious hard cheeses, and a huge laundry-list of vegetables – and that’s all in the first phase. No, I don’t think you’ll be starving!
Myth 6 – You Can Only Eat Meats on a Low-Carb Diet
Not true at all. Meats can be a very big part of low-carb eating because they are high in protein. You should be getting a good serving of protein every time you eat, which is up to six times a day.
So yes, you can eat a lot of meat, fish, poultry, and seafood, but not exclusively. And, if you’re a vegetarian, this diet is still completely do-able as there are many other low-carb, high-protein foods available. And no, you don’t avoid all carbs and eat only protein. The plan is devised to eat a healthy mix of lean proteins and good carbs.
Myth 7 – Low-Carb Eating is Expensive
This CAN be true if you choose to buy pre-packaged food designed for a specific low-carb plan. But you don’t need to eat specialty low-carb food items. You can plan smart and cook meals using simple recipes.
You can stock your kitchen with foods that are perfect for your low-carb diet without spending money on any pre-packaged items. However, if you choose to buy low-carb specialty items, you’ll save money if you buy in bulk and share with a friend who’s also eating low-carb.
You’ll also find online low-carb stores that offer free shipping on orders over $100. If your order is too small, order enough for two and get a friend to split it with you. If you don’t have a friend on the diet, this may be the time to bring someone on board – you never know, they might be ready!
Eating low-carb is not dangerous, it’s not depriving, it’s not only for supermodels, and it doesn’t have to be expensive. Now, what was your excuse again for not giving the low-carb lifestyle a try?