You can’t scroll through your Instagram without seeing a handful of celebrities (like Kourtney Kardashian and Adriana Lima) and social media influencers showing off their flat bellies while singing the praises of their favorite low-carb meals. And if your New Year’s resolution is to shed those pesky pounds, you might be this close to hopping on the carb-restrictive bandwagon.
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Low-carb diets reduce dietary carbohydrates dramatically, which reduces blood sugar levels and eliminates blood sugar spikes and the resulting blood sugar/insulin swings. Typically carbs are reduced to below ten percent of total caloric intake. The Atkins diet induction phase, for example, reduces carb intake to less than 20g per day, most coming from complex carbs. Most low-carb diets also moderate intake of protein and increase dietary fat, and are often referred to as Low-Carbohydrate, High-Fat (LCHF) diets.

Most Paleo dieters of today do none of this, with the exception of occasional hunting trips or a little urban foraging. Instead, their diet is largely defined by what they do not do: most do not eat dairy or processed grains of any kind, because humans did not invent such foods until after the Paleolithic; peanuts, lentils, beans, peas and other legumes are off the menu, but nuts are okay; meat is consumed in large quantities, often cooked in animal fat of some kind; Paleo dieters sometimes eat fruit and often devour vegetables; and processed sugars are prohibited, but a little honey now and then is fine.
When is a low-carb diet not just a low-carb diet? When there’s a different name to it. And with the popularity of low-carb living for weight loss and health benefits, many people are turning to the diet in all its various forms. Because most Americans eat more than 200 grams (g) of carbohydrates per day, says Kelly Schmidt, RD, LDN, a nutrition consultant in Columbus, Ohio, dipping lower than that is going to be, in a form, a lower-carb diet, she notes.
Still, the new study cannot prove that the low-carb, high-fat diet alone caused participants to burn more calories. Although the diets were as similar as possible between groups, other dietary factors, such as levels of certain nutrients not accounted for in the study, could have played a role in the effect, the researchers said. So more research is needed to understand why participants in the low-carb group burned more calories.
In making the case for meat, Cordain presents anecdotal evidence of Eskimos who lived their full life without a heart attack. The Eskimo diet consists of 97% meat, which he concedes causes all Eskimos to develop atherosclerosis—a common precursor to heart disease. But Cordain says Eskimos never die of heart disease. He discusses one Eskimo who lived 45 years and another who lived 53 years, both without heart disease! He then jumps to the conclusion that because these Eskimos didn’t get heart attacks, even with severe atherosclerosis, meat must have protected them from heart disease. So Cordain’s best case for lots of meat is that you can live to the ripe age of 45 or even 53 without a heart attack. But do people—even unhealthy smokers or the obese—generally get heart attacks before age 53?

The Garden of Eating: A Produce-Dominated Diet & Cookbook by Rachel Albert-Matesz and Don Matesz presents evidence for a diet of vegetables, fruits, and pasture-fed animal products. Provides a practical plan and 250 delicious, family-friendly, grain- and dairy-free recipes. Buy from the author's page The Garden of Eating. Rachel's blog The Healthy Cooking Coach. The cookbook maintains a perfect rating at Amazon.


If you've been reading about the latest diet trends, then you've definitely heard about Whole30. When you have to say sayonara to pasta, alcohol, dessert, and dairy for a month, it can reveal things about your diet you probably want to change. From uncovering food sensitivities to combating sugar addictions, the Whole30 diet can transform the way you eat—promoting a cleaner eating approach.
The American Diabetes Association's Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes—2019 include a variety of eating plans as acceptable for management of type 2 diabetes and prediabetes. Mediterranean diet, Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet, plant based diets and, for most type 2 diabetics, low carbohydrate diets are included as Medical Nutrition Therapy options. [13]
With Rob Lowe as the latest (and first male) spokesperson for this widely known low-carb diet, it’s no wonder people are (once again) taking the Atkins route. "Atkins is a diet where you replace many of your carbohydrates with protein and healthy fats — meaning foods high in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats," Upton says. (FYI: The diet was created by a cardiologist named Robert C. Atkins back in the '60s.)
Sweden's Staffan Lindeberg has a home page Paleolithic Diet in Medical Nutrition [archive.org]. A recent study of Staffan's has A Paleolithic diet improving glucose tolerance more than a Mediterranean-like diet in individuals with ischemic heart disease. Also see his first web page, an overview of his Kitava study: On the Benefits of Ancient Diets. Now he has a book Food and Western Disease: Health and nutrition from an evolutionary perspective. Here's a book review: Easy to Read, Informative, Packed with Footnotes on Studies.

Evolutionary biologist Marlene Zuk writes that the idea that our genetic makeup today matches that of our ancestors is misconceived, and that in debate Cordain was "taken aback" when told that 10,000 years was "plenty of time" for an evolutionary change in human digestive abilities to have taken place.[4]:114 On this basis Zuk dismisses Cordain's claim that the paleo diet is "the one and only diet that fits our genetic makeup".[4]

I wanted to love this book but it was a bit boring. There was too much detail on the athlete/event testing. "Well, I wanted them to do this, they did it. I liked the result, but I'll probably change it." I understand that the book was supposed to be like a daily journal but it didn't make for great reading. Obviously, putting the games together is a huge undertaking but the day to day pre-games testing of athletes and the results wasn't all that interesting. I did enjoy some of the behind the scenes stuff on the actual games.


The composition of a person’s diet had a major impact on his or her metabolism in this study. The people on the low-carb plan burned off about 250 calories a day more than those on the high-carb diet, Ludwig said. In the low-carb group, those with the highest insulin secretion at the start of the study had even more dramatic results, burning up to 478 calories more per day than the high-carb dieters.
You never, ever, ever have to eat anything you don’t want to eat. You’re all big boys and girls. Toughen up. Learn to say no, or make your mom proud and say, “No, thank you.” Learn to stick up for yourself. Just because it’s your sister’s birthday, or your best friend’s wedding, or your company picnic does not mean you have to eat anything. It’s always a choice, and we would hope that you stopped succumbing to peer pressure in 7th grade.

In addition to keeping you adequately hydrated -- which can also help alleviate constipation -- drinking lots of water can also help offset still another low-carb diet problem: bad breath. The ketones produced during the diet can lead to what is sometimes described as a fruity odor although it is often described as having an almost "chemical" odor similar to acetone or nail polish remover.
Grass-fed beef is often highlighted on the diet, which is promoted to contain more omega-3 fats than conventional beef (due to being fed grass instead of grain). It does contain small amounts of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), a precursor to EPA and DHA. However, only a small proportion of ALA can be converted in the body to long-chain omega-3 fatty acids (EPA and DHA). The amount of omega-3 is also highly variable depending on the exact feeding regimen and differences in fat metabolism among cattle breeds. [3] In general, the amount of omega-3 in grass-fed beef is much lower than that in oily marine fish. [3] Cooked salmon contains 1000-2000 mg of EPA/DHA per 3-ounce portion, whereas 3 ounces of grass-fed beef contains about 20-200 mg of ALA.
Meatza: This is one of my favorite Whole30 Pizza Alternatives—a sausage or seasoned meat crust with your favorite pizza toppings! Serve this delicious low carb, Whole30, keto, and paleo-friendly pizza alternative with a big green salad and a simple extra virgin olive oil and vinegar dressing! (Psst! Leave off the nut cheese if you have an unhealthy emotional relationship with cheese, use cheese as a comfort food, or find cheese is a trigger food for other unhealthy cravings.)
Remove the chicken from the curry sauce and discard the extra sauce. Add the chicken, breast-side down, to the grill and sear until golden brown, about 2 minutes. (When the meat is properly seared it will pull off the grates very easily, so don’t rush this step.) Turn the chicken over so the bone side is down and place over indirect heat. Cover with the grill lid and continue to cook until the internal temperature of the chicken is 160°F, or the breast meat springs back when pressed with a finger. This will take 10 to 15 minutes, depending on thickness.
When is a low-carb diet not just a low-carb diet? When there’s a different name to it. And with the popularity of low-carb living for weight loss and health benefits, many people are turning to the diet in all its various forms. Because most Americans eat more than 200 grams (g) of carbohydrates per day, says Kelly Schmidt, RD, LDN, a nutrition consultant in Columbus, Ohio, dipping lower than that is going to be, in a form, a lower-carb diet, she notes.
The American Diabetes Association's Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes—2019 include a variety of eating plans as acceptable for management of type 2 diabetes and prediabetes. Mediterranean diet, Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet, plant based diets and, for most type 2 diabetics, low carbohydrate diets are included as Medical Nutrition Therapy options. [13]

Research into the effectiveness of low-carbohydrate, high fat (LCHF) diets for preventing weight gain and diabetes has produced conflicting results, with some suggestion that diet suitability is not generalizable, but specific to individuals.[9] Overall, for prevention, there is no good evidence that LCHF diets offer a superior diet choice to a more conventional healthy diet, as recommended by many health authorities, in which carbohydrate typically accounts for more than 40% of calories consumed.[9]
Paleo diets are based on a simple premise – if the cavemen didn’t eat it, you shouldn’t either. So long to refined sugar, dairy, legumes and grains (this is pre-agricultural revolution), and hello to meat, fish, poultry, fruits and veggies. The idea is that by eliminating modern-era foods like highly-processed carbs and dairy, you can avoid or control “diseases of civilization” like Type 2 diabetes and heart disease, and likely lose weight too. What you eat and how much depend on your goals or the specific program you’re on, if you choose to follow one. The high-protein diet is ranked poorly among U.S. News experts, who consider it too restrictive to be healthy or sustainable.
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