There’s a lot of information out there about what you can and cannot eat when you are on a low carb diet.
Because you are working hard to cut unhealthy carbs with fitness or health goals in mind, it can be a difficult task at hand to keep your meals and snacks in check. However, by following a few guidelines you can make it a little bit easier on yourself. For instance, you want to cut carbs from your food triangle, but not healthy, high-fat foods that can help keep your body and mind energized.
Let’s Define “Healthy Fats”
It may be surprising when we say you should eat high-fat foods, given that mainstream society has shined a negative light on all fats. And while it’s true that a lot of high-fat foods should be avoided, there are healthy ones that should absolutely be part of your diet. A popular example would be avocado.
So, what do we mean when we say “healthy fats?” We mean monosaturated and polyunsaturated fats. These fats have heart-health benefits and are full of healthy nutrients, like omega-3.
Here are four healthy, high-fat foods that are perfect for your low carb diet:
Speaking of omega-3 fatty acids, you won’t find many better sources than walnuts. These tasty little nuts have been shown to lower your cholesterol and improve blood vessel function. Try eating a handful a day as a snack or incorporate them into your meals to get the most benefit.
Further research has also shown that nuts in general reduce your risk of blood clots. Healthy fats can be found in the following nuts:
Pistachios are great for eye health and if you find it more difficult to control your portions, these shelled nuts can slow you down. The act of shelling keeps you eating at a slow pace, so you’ll naturally portion control. Keep in mind for any of these nuts, all you need is about ¼ of a cup a day to get the health benefits.
2. Oily Fish
You may be noticing a trend with omega-3 fatty acids. Not only are omega-3s some of the healthiest fats around, but they’re also great for your heart health. To make sure you’re getting enough, try adding oily fish to your meals. The following are full of this essential fat:
Tuna is one of the easiest fish to fit into your diet because it’s so versatile, and readily available even in canned form – yes, that counts. Try making tuna burgers or tuna salad to get the nutrients you need.
Word of caution: limit your intake. You only need about 12 ounces a week to avoid overexposure to mercury.
Eggs can be a hit or miss with a lot of people. You either like them, or you don’t. But as you’re making that tuna salad, consider throwing some eggs on top (cooked, of course). Egg whites have become popular because of the widespread belief they are healthier, and while it’s true they contain less fat, they also contain less nutrients. The yolk is where you’ll find the fat content and nutrients that you want and your body needs. They also contain vitamin B, which is excellent for your brain and nervous system.
4. Natural Fats
Olive oil is a tasty and healthy natural fat. Use it as a dressing on your salad, and use it in place of butter when cooking. Just be careful with how much you use, as it has a high fat content and you don’t want to overdo it. If you don’t like the taste of olive oil so much, you can also try natural coconut oil. Coconut oil contains Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCTs), a form of healthy, energizing saturated fats. You can use coconut oil while cooking, or even while baking, in place of other fats like butter or canola oil. If you don’t want to make the switch but still want the health benefits of MCTs, try MCT oil. MCT oil is derived from coconuts and is a key ingredient in MCTbar. MCTbar is a healthy, natural snack option.
The Fats You Need Without the Carbs
If you’re on a low carb diet, try adding these healthy, high-fat foods into your weekly meal plan. Not only will they help keep you on the right track with your diet, but they will also help your body get the nutrients it needs to thrive.