Nutrition

24 hour fasting

24 Hour Fasting: Getting Started the Right Way

24 Hour Fasting: Getting Started the Right Way

24 hour fasting

There are so many tried and tested methods for weight loss, and a new one is 24 hour fasting. A 24 hour fast involves not eating for 24 hours, except for zero calorie liquids like coffee, tea and water. Although 24 hours is a short period of time, fasting has many health benefits.

Fasting has grown in popularity in recent years. There have been many books written about fasting and studies done on the topic. Let’s take a deeper look at a 24 hour fast, the benefits, and how to prepare.

24 Hour Fasting and the Miraculous Benefits

You might be wondering what exactly happens to your body during a 24 hour fast. Honestly, it’s really quite interesting. Once you discover the benefits of fasting, you’ll realize why it’s so popular. It’s not wonder every major religion has some type of fasting associated with it.

Let’s jump into the main benefits!

Burning Fat for Energy

As you’re likely aware your body needs energy in order to function. Energy is delivered to you from the food that you eat but also from reserves pre-existing in your body. Once all these reserves have been used up, your body will start to produce something called ketone bodies. Ketones are basically fat cells in the blood, your liver uses for energy. In short, this puts your body into ultra fat-burning mode which is ultimately where the weight loss comes from.

Improve Cell Resistance

When the body is fasted, it feels “starved”. This kicks the cells into turbocharge repair mode, increasing efficiency. Your cells will become more efficient at metabolizing existing fat, because they don’t know when they will get food again. It’s really a form of biohacking.

Slow the Aging Process

Fasting can slow down the wear and tear on your cells when they copy DNA to new cells. Simply put, aging is the process by which DNA doesn’t get transferred from cell to cell. Each time a cell dies, it copies its own DNA and “pastes” it into the new cell. As we age, the “paste” function erodes over time – that’s why we get gray hair, wrinkles and bones frail. Fasting slows down this cell deterioration process.

Eliminate Zombie Cells

Not only can we slow down the aging process with fasting, but we can also reverse cell damage by eliminating senescent cells. When we fast, our bodies clean out senescent cells. These are “zombie” stem cells that don’t convert to the appropriate cell. As they build up, senescent cells can turn to tumors or become cancerous.

24 Hour Fasting for Weight Loss

One of the main reasons why people might start 24 hour fasting is for weight-loss reasons. Keep in mind most weight loss in the first 24 hours is water. It’s impossible to lose a significant amount of fat in 24 hours, no matter how much you restrict food. The best part is, you won’t feel bloated at all!

This can be especially beneficial if you have an event coming up where you want to look as slim as possible. Some celebrities do a 24 hour fast before a red carpet appearance, like Jennifer Aniston and Halle Berry.

Alternatives to 24 Hours

While a 24 hour fast in itself might not do a great deal in terms of ACTUAL weight loss, many people swear by intermittent fasting. Once they change their eating habits for a longer period of time, they see real results. Intermittent fasting basically involves having a small “eating window” and fasting for the rest of the time. If you’ve tried 24 hour fasting or it is something that interests you, it’s definitely worth looking into. If 24 hours is too much to start, try these alternatives:

  • 20 hour fast, 4 hour eating window
  • 18 hour fast, 6 hour eating window
  • 16 hour fast, 8 hour eating window
  • 14 hour fast, 10 hour eating window

Another option is alternating fasting days. Under this method, you eat less than 500 calories on your fasting day, and eat normal caloric intake on the 2nd day. Repeat the process. Mentally, this might be easier than fasting a full 24 hours.

It also should be noted that When you are fasting, you are more likely to eat better when you stop, it’s a subconscious thing that has been backed up by studies of those who practice intermittent fasting regularly. With all the hard work you are putting into those fasting periods of your life, you are not going to want to sabotage it by eating junk food once you stop your fasting.

In general, fasting can put you off on the right foot and can also teach you better eating habits. If you do 24 hour fasting regularly, you will also get into the habit of drinking more water which has enormous health benefits of its own.

Other Benefits

Weight loss is the main thing that people think about when considering fasting for a significant period of time but there are other benefits too, so let’s take a look at some of them!

  • It can help you control your blood pressure by reducing insulin resistance. This might not sound like much but reducing insulin resistance allows your body to transport glucose into your bloodstream much more effectively which helps overall health.
  • Fasting is said to improve cognitive function, therefore making you feel more alert and energized during your day.
  • A study into fasting proved that fasting for short periods of time but on a regular basis can help to fight inflammation. This reduces your likelihood of everyday infections like the common cold and even more serious conditions like heart disease and cancer.
  • HGH (the human growth hormone) is something that is vital in improving many aspects of your general health. This includes metabolism, growth, weight loss, and muscle strength. Studies have shown that regular fasting naturally increases the HGH hormone.
  • When fasting for a long period of time, your body will become extra sensitive to the next nutrients that your body takes in. You can take full advantage of that if you have a particular goal (i.e. building lean muscle) by eating a protein-packed meal when you break your fast.
  • In a study that was done on rats, fasting proved to increase lifespan! Although you are not a rodent, 24 hour fasting could definitely be beneficial in slowing down that aging process.

How to Start a 24 Hour Fast

You might be a little nervous about not eating for 24 hours and that is to be expected but preparing for it well and getting in the right mindset will ensure that you are successful. In the few days leading up to the fast, eating less is definitely recommended.

Reducing your calorie intake in the lead up to the fast will get your body more prepared for what is about to come. Right before your fast, eat a decent-sized meal but don’t overdo it! Making sure that you get plenty of sleep the night before. This is really important so that your body is working to its full potential. It isn’t called a 24 hour fast for nothing, so make sure that you have plenty of water throughout the day when you are fasting.

One way to really stay the course is to drink a lot of calorie free liquids, like water, tea and coffee.

Side Effects and Warnings of 24 Hour Fasting

There are definitely benefits to 24 hour fasting but it isn’t for everyone. It is not recommended that those suffering from diabetes or low blood sugar try this type of fasting. There might be some minor side effects like dizziness during 24 hour fast weight loss but just make sure that you are keeping on top of your water intake and this should subside.

Just water is best when you are doing a 24 hour fast weight loss but if you are feeling desperate for something else, you can also drink 0 calorie drinks, green tea and coffee without creamer or sugar. You will feel hunger when 24 hour fasting but that is something that will subside the more you get used to it. With that being said, listen to your body and if you feel you are experiencing more serious side effects or are feeling unwell, stop the fast and eat some food.

Conclusion on 24 hour fasting methods

As you can see 24 hour fasting can be beneficial for weight loss, building better eating habits and overall health. Now that you are a little bit more knowledge, you should be able to make an informed decision. Please keep in mind that all the information here is research-based and if you are going to make a big change to your diet or eating regime, it is recommended that you contact a physician for advice on 24 hour fasting.

The Keto Diet Explained Simply

The Keto Diet, Explained Simply

keto diet explained

We’ve all heard of the keto diet, but what exactly is it? In this article, we break it down so simply an 8th grader can read it. The keto diet is a great way to rapidly lose weight loss, and includes many delicious foods that make dieting much easier, like all the cheese and fat you want 😉

Read on to discover all things about the keto diet, explained in a way that will allow you to wrap your head around it.

A quick “keto” explanation

Let’s break this down simply, in three points.

  • Keto is short for ketosis.
  • Ketosis is an internal state in your body, when your liver burns ketones for energy.
  • Ketones are simply fat stored in your blood.

Period. That’s it. Keto is when your liver is burning fat for energy instead of carbohydrates.

What does it mean to be in ketosis?

Ketosis is when your body is actively burning ketones for energy. When the body is in ketosis, you’ll have fats that are circulating in your blood that convert to glucose (blood sugar) via the liver. Think of it this way, if you ate fat and nothing but fat… your would have fat circulating in the blood (in the form of ketones). Those ketones, once they hit your liver, get converted into glucose  for energy. Because the liver is doing more work to convert fat for fuel, it’s studies have shown that the keto diet is good for fatty liver disease.

Use Keto Strips to Test

You can buy keto strips to test if your body is in a state of ketosis. This allows you to closely monitor carbohydrate intake to make sure you don’t slip out of ketosis.

A Keto Diet Explanation

  • 70-75% healthy fats
  • 15-20% protein of any kind
  • 5-10% complex carbs

The ketosis or “keto” diet is a diet consists mostly of fat, with some protein, and very few carbs. The objective of the diet is to get the body into a state of ketosis so your body burns skeletal fat for energy quicker than it normally would. Generally, the recommended breakdown of the macro nutrient intake is above.

Let’s break that down more for you.

What is in a keto diet?

You’re probably curious to know what’s in a keto diet. Since the liver needs ketones to be in ketosis, you need to eat a lot of fats. When we say a lot, we mean A LOT. Think, olive oil, avocado oil, mayo. That’s all okay on the keto diet. But to keep your cholesterol down, you want to stick to healthy fats that increase HDL and lower LDL for heart health.

Suggested Fats To Eat

The following fats should be added liberally to your diet. You can’t really overdue these:

  • Avocado oil
  • Olive oil
  • Coconut oil
  • Grass Fed Butter
  • Heavy cream

The following fats should be eaten in moderation: sunflower oil, safflower oil, and corn-based oils. It’ll be easy to avoid these foods if you avoid packaged foods, as that is where they are found.

Suggested Proteins on Keto

The following proteins should be eaten often, as they have a lot of healthy fats.

  • Grass-fed beef patties and steaks
  • Eggs, Eggs, Eggs – Whole eggs!
  • Fish, especially salmon and non-smoked sardines
  • Chicken (dark meat)

Bacon, and low fat protein like skinless chicken and shrimp proteins, should be eaten in moderation. If you do eat them, you better eaten with something fatty on top 😛

Suggested Carbohydrates for Keto

Since keto is extremely low carb, you definitely want to get most of your carbohydrates from vegetables. Low glycemic carbs, like leafy greens, have the smallest impact on your blood sugar levels. Try these:

  • Kale
  • Asparagus
  • Celery
  • Spinach

Other good vegetables to eat in moderation include leaks, squash and eggplant.

Consume Many Nuts

Nuts, which are high in fat and have anti-inflammatory benefits helping fight off disease, are a staple on the keto diet.

  • Walnuts
  • Almonds
  • Flaxseed
  • Chia Seeds

Keto Friendly Dairy

The BEST part about keto is that you can eat as much of certain cheese as you want 🙂

Remember, since fats are such a staple in the keto diet, you want to have fattier dairy products too. Here are the best keto cheese you can eat liberally.

  • Cheddar Cheese
  • Feta Cheese
  • Bleu Cheese

Full-fat cottage cheese, ricotta and plain Greek yogurt are great options as well, though in moderation.

What to avoid on keto?

Half the battle of Keto is knowing what not to eat. Here is a quick shortlist to stay the course with your diet. These are the foods to avoid on keto:

Fats to Avoid

  • Margarine
  • Artificial trans fats should never be consumed.
  • These are horrible for your cholesterol levels.

Proteins to Avoid

  • Junk processed meats (i.e. SPAM)
  • Never eat lunch meat
  • Processed foods like chicken nuggets
  • Marinated meat loaded with sugar.

Carbohydrates to Avoid

  • Sugars, no matter what.
  • Potatoes
  • Corn
  • Raisins
  • Most fruits
  • Ice cream or anything sugary
  • Milk

If you’re really jonesing for something sweet, check out what Keto Friendly Starbucks Drinks you can have.

A Summary of the Keto Diet Explanation

The skinny on the keto diet is that it’s mainly a fat based diet, to allow your liver to burn fat instead of carbs. When your body burns fat by consuming fat, it tricks the liver into burning skeletal fat. That’s why the diet works so well for weight loss.

keto weight loss first week

Keto Weight Loss First Week: What to Expect

Keto Weight Loss First Week: What to Expect

keto weight loss first week

Almost all of us have heard of the keto diet, and have seen its wonders work first hand on ourselves and others. The way it sheds abdominal fast so quickly, clears up the skin, and focuses the mind. But getting to that amazing state comes with it’s own set of challenges, like temptation, being super “hangry”, and even something known as the “Keto Flu”. So read on to quickly learn what keto is, and what you can expect with keto weight loss, first week and beyond.

If you’re familiar with keto, you can skip this next section.

What is Ketosis?

Ketosis is when the body enters a state where the liver begins processing fat for energy, instead of sugar.

Why Does Keto Work?

There are a few main reasons weight loss by keto dieting works, and it’s weight loss effects come from the stabilization of insulin levels.

Stabilizes Insulin Levels

By reducing your carbohydrate intake and increasing “no carb” vegetables, you reduce the need for insulin. Without carbs, insulin isn’t needed to deliver blood sugars to your muscles, organs and other tissues. Low insulin levels means stable insulin levels, which enables the body to optimize fat loss for energy.

Low Insulin Levels Shrink Fat Cells

The process of fat burning for energy is called ketosis. When the body enters ketosis, it begins to use fats for energy. Those fats come directly from the cells where they are stored, meaning the fat cells shrink in size. Interesting to note however, the fat cell itself does not go away… it just gets smaller.

New Fat Can’t Be Created In a Low Insulin Environment

Another powerful effect low, stabilized insulin levels have on weight loss is that new fat cells cannot be created in a low insulin environment. Given other fat cells shrink, and the body cannot store new fat, the result is rapid weight loss in a short period of time.

How Long Does Keto Take to Work?

As mentioned in the subsection above, keto has a “double” effect on weight loss. First is that the stabilized insulin levels shrink existing fat cells, and also prevent the creation of new ones. But getting there isn’t always easy. Here is what you can expect with keto during your first week, especially if you’re a beginner.

1-2 Hours from your Last Carb (Kiss It Goodbye):

You might be getting hungry if you’re like most people, but by this time your pancreas is also slowing down production of insulin, for any remaining carbohydrates that are being digested.

3-5 Hours: Insulin Levels Drop

Within 3-5 hours of eating, insulin levels in the blood drop, as most carbs from the last meal have been successfully delivered (by way of glucose and insulin), to your muscles, organs, and other tissues.

14-20 Hours: Body Enters Ketosis

Within 14-20 hours of fasting, the body enters ketosis. You can kickstart ketosis by fasting a few hours after a meal, working out, and continuing to fast for a few more hours. But generally speaking, a 14 hour fast should kick in ketosis. Eat dinner by 7pm, go for a walk before bed, and by 11am the next day, you’ll be entering ketosis (provided you haven’t eaten!).

24-72 Hours: Serious Water Weight is Lost

Within a day or two, you’ll start to notice you’re slightly lighter in the pants and on the scale. Don’t get too excited just yet, as that’s mostly water weight. You see, for every gram of carbohydrates you eat your body stores some water. The rough mathematical breakdown of this is that for every 144g of carbs, your body will store one pound of water! To put that into perspective, a piece of cheese pizza has 42g of carbs. If you have 3-4 pieces of pizza, you’ll put on about a pound of water weight.

Day 2-3: Keto Flu (aka Low Carb Flu)

It doesn’t happen for everyone, but a common side effect is keto flu (also known as low carb flu). This is basically a miserable, grumpy feeling from not eating carbs (carbs and sugar make us happy… and without them we are haaaangry). See the section below, Symptoms of Keto Flu, to better know what to expect.

Days 4-6: Keto Flu Subsides, Mental & Gut Clarity Attained

By the end of day 4 or 5, your keto flu will subside. The body will just become use to ketosis, and processing ketones (fats in the blood) for energy. This is when you begin to crave fats, like avocados, whole eggs and pork rinds (yes, pork rinds are keto friendly). Many people begin to notice their newfound state of mental clarity, and by now their “bowels” seem to have regulated and are used to a low carb diet.

Days 7 & Beyond: Rapid Weight Loss, Liver Efficiency

Once you get to day 7, you’ll see why the keto diet is so popular. While the long term effects of the diet have yet to be determined, the short term effects of the keto diet have created a cult-like following. It’s undeniable that people feel better, look better, sleep better, and think better when they’re grooving in keto. A big part of the “feel good” aspect is that the bowels have regulated and the liver is now efficient in processing ketones for energy.

Better Understanding Your First Week of Keto

Now that you have a good timeline of what to expect, below is some more detail on what to expect with certain key points in the beginning of your journey.

Symptoms of the Keto Flu

The keto flu is really just a series of everyday annoyances that all happen at once:

  • Headaches
  • Foggy brain
  • Fatigue
  • Irritability
  • Nausea
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Constipation

Once the liver hits efficiency and begins to optimize burning ketones for fuel, the side effects subside.

First Week of Keto Weight Loss

As mentioned above, significant water weight is lost in the first few days after “going keto”. The reason why is that without carbs, the body doesn’t store nearly as much water in the cells. When the body stores carbohydrates for fuel (as glucose or glycogen), it needs water to process all that energy. Processing fats doesn’t require nearly as much water, so the water weight loss happens almost right away, within 1-2 days.

As for losing fat, this happens once the body hits efficiency with burning fats for energy. But the amount of weight you lose in your first week on keto really depends on so many different factors, like:

  • Age
  • Weight
  • Body Size
  • Obesity Levels
  • Existing Carb Intake
  • Workout Regimen
  • Body Type
  • Genetics
  • Discipline to stay the course with the diet

However, keep in mind that for the first week of keto, weight loss will vary from person to person.

first week of keto weight loss

Average Weight Loss First Week of Keto

Given all the factors that influence how much you’ll lose, it’s tough to see what the average weight loss first week of keto might be. Many have reported losing anywhere from 1-10 pounds, depending on how big you are (the bigger you are, the more you’ll lose).

Conclusion: First Week of Keto, and Beyond

The ketogenic diet is a great way to enter ketosis and burn fat for energy instead of carbs. This allows you to live an amazing and healthy life without the need to eat carbohydrates. Without carbs, weight loss is dramatically accelerated. While we can’t say how many pounds you will lose in your first week of keto, we can tell you that you will feel different after 7 days if you stay the course on the diet.

 

keto friendly starbucks drinks

Keto Friendly Starbucks Drinks & Other Low Carb Options

Keto Friendly Starbucks Drinks & Other Low Carb Options

keto friendly starbucks drinks

One of the hardest parts of staying the course with a low carb or keto diet is having readily available options to choose from. Without low carb or keto options handy, you’ll likely end up “cheating” and eating something you shouldn’t. Many restaurants have tailored their menus to offer more of a variety for dieting consumers, but some haven’t. If you deep dive however, you’re almost guaranteed to find keto options anywhere. As popular as Starbucks is, it’s helpful to know what options are available (since there’s a Starbucks on every corner it seems!). Here are some keto friendly Starbucks drinks and other low carb options to choose from.

Keto Friendly Starbucks Coffee

First, you should know that all coffee is keto friendly. Coffee doesn’t have any calories, and without calories it’s impossible to have carbohydrates (or proteins or fats for that matter). So drinking a cup of coffee has an absolutely neutral effect on keto: it won’t help you (beyond curbing your appetite), nor will it hurt you and take you of ketosis.

Espresso

A shot of espresso, similar to coffee, is keto neutral. It doesn’t have a positive or negative effect either way; instead, it’s like you’re not even consuming anything. You can enhance your espresso or coffee so that it encourages keto, by adding healthy fats.

Boost Ketosis With Butter or Bulletproof MCT Oil

If you want to make your coffee even more keto friendly, request a packet of butter from Starbucks. The added fats will help assure your liver continues to convert fats for energy which is the sole objective of the ketogenic diet. You can also add Bulletproof’s C8 MCT (multi-chain triglycerides) Oil which helps accelerate fat loss and fuel brain power:


Bulletproof Brain Octane C8 MCT Oil, 16 Ounces, Keto Supplement

Cold Brew or Iced Coffee

Cold brewed coffee at Starbucks is slow-steeped in cold water for 20 hours. Nitro brew and iced coffee are similar in that they have zero calories. Feel free to add a sugar free sweetener to the mix, more on that below.

Oat & Nut Milk Lattes

Lattes are just steamed milk and espresso. Like other drinks, swap out the dairy milk to avoid the lactose and reduce calories, and instead use almond milk or oat milk.

Keto Friendly Starbucks Drinks

There are numerous coffee based drinks you can get a Starbucks that remain keto friendly. For example, you can get an oat milk latte (which doesn’t have the lactose sugar associated with regular milk). And in exchange for regular syrup, you can opt to use stevia instead. Cancel out the whipped cream, and you end up with a keto friendly Starbucks drink.

keto friendly starbucks coffee

Low Carb “Skinny” Mocha

You can get a “skinny” mocha at Starbucks that comes with a reduced sugar chocolate syrup, offering only 1g of sugar per pump. While sugar is strictly prohibited on keto, you can incorporate this 1-2g of sugar toward your daily total carbohydrate intake. Swap out regular milk for oat or almond milk to reduce the amount of lactose (sugar from dairy) that comes in the drink.

Low Carb Caramel Macchiato at Starbucks

One of the most popular drinks at Starbucks is a caramel macchiato. This recipe consists of 1 shot of espresso, 1 cup of 2% milk, 1 tablespoon of Starbucks vanilla syrup, and caramel syrup. You can swap out the regular vanilla syrup used in the recipe with sugar free vanilla, and opt out of the caramel drizzle on top. Instead, you can use a sugar-free caramel drizzle, but it might require you to carry it with you in your car 😉

Torani Sugar Free Syrup, Classic Caramel, 25.4 Oz, Pack of 4

Use Sugar Free Sweeteners

There are numerous ways to get the same flavorful Starbucks drinks you know and love, without all the sugar. Simply add one of these to the mix to for a keto friendly Starbucks drink.

  • Stevia or monk fruit instead of sugar
  • Opt out of whip cream, syrup drizzles, etc.

Any Type of Starbucks Tea

Tea is definitely a great keto friendly option at starbucks.

  • Emperors Cloud and Mist Green Tea
  • Jade Citrus Mint Green Tea
  • Mint Majesty Herbal Tea
  • Passion Tango Herbal Tea
  • Peach Tranquility Herbal Tea
  • Royal English Breakfast Tea
  • Earl Grey Brewed Tea
  • Joy (Seasonal)
  • Organic Chai Tea
  • Youthberry White Tea

Other Keto Options at Starbucks

If you don’t feel like a keto friendly drink, you can opt to eat other keto options at Starbucks instead. There are many keto friendly foods available, both in the cooling case and at the counter, including:

  • String Cheese
  • Nut Bars
  • Packs of Nuts
  • Siggi’s Yogurt
  • Horizon Milk (avoid the Chocolate one)

Just remember, as a rule of thumb: if it doesn’t have sugar or carbs, it’s probably a good keto option!

keto options at starbucks

Stay the Course with Keto Friendly Drinks & Food

As previously mentioned, having available options is the best way to stay the course on keto. The keto diet can be tough, and you must be relentless to succeed. Having a sweet, sugar-free treat at Starbucks (or a regular keto friendly treat) is a great way to stay the course. Keep in mind these “principles” of keto and you will do just fine with keto friendly Starbucks drinks and coffee:

  • Use Stevia or Monk Fruit instead of sugar
  • Opt for sugar-free syrup, if it’s still available
  • Use your own sugar free syrup instead
  • Replace dairy milk with oat milk or nut milk to reduce lactose intake
  • All teas and coffee, provided you don’t add anything to them, are keto friendly Starbucks drinks.

We hope we’ll help you enjoy your sugar-free caffeine jolt! 🙂

Do No Carb Vegetables Exist?

Do No Carb Vegetables Exist?

no carb vegetables

Vegetables are a great source of vitamins, minerals, nutrients and fiber. If you’re looking to increase the amount of healthy foods in your diet, vegetables are a great way to do that because of their low caloric content. Some vegetables have carbohydrates, while others have nearly zero. Many others are completely starch free, helping with weight loss and blood sugar. In this post, we look at some low to no carb vegetables, and for your convenience, have compiled some lists of no starch vegetables.

Carbs vs. Net Carbs

Calculating carbohydrates in vegetables is similar to calculating carbohydrates in any other food. You must find the amount of dietary fiber in order to find the net carbs. For example, if you eat a piece of bread with 25g of carbohydrates, but the bread has 3g of dietary fiber, then the net carb intake is 22g. If you’re limiting yourself to a certain amount of carbs per day, look at the net amount and not the total amount. The 22g in this example would constitute the amount toward your daily total.

One thing for certain, if you’re looking for no carb vegetables, is to stay away from starchy vegetables. Vegetables with starch, like potatoes, usually have the highest carbohydrate content. Below is a list of no starch vegetables.

Do No Carb Vegetables Actually Exist?

The short answer here is no. ALL plants, including fruits and veggies, have some carbohydrates in them. But when you factor in the dietary fiber, many vegetables are very close to net zero carbs. Given the recommended daily carbohydrate intake is over 100g, eating many low carb vegetables will give you enough carbs to have some energy, while filling you up.

Interested in a low carb life? Check out our latest, Is Keto Healthy?

Zero Carb Vegetables List

Once you factor in the dietary fiber, many vegetables are about as close as you can get to a no carbohydrate vegetable. The ultimate zero carb vegetables list includes cucumbrs, green onions, mustard greens, bok choy, collard greens, swiss chard, escarole, lettuce, spinach, arugula and watercress.

no carb vegetables

Vegetables with Less Than One Carb

As you can see from the above list, these vegetables get as close to zero carbs as possible. To really reduce carb intake while packing in a power punch of vitamins, minerals, and nutrients, focus on the vegetables that have less than one carb:

  • Mustard Greens
  • Bok Choy
  • Collard Greens
  • Swiss Chard
  • Escarole
  • Lettuce
  • Spinach
  • Arugula
  • Watercress

no carbohydrate vegetables

List of No Starch Vegetables (Low Carb)

Below is a list of the most common, readily available no starch vegetables. Also just because a vegetable has no starch, does not mean it’s “carb free”. We note in parenthesis which no starch vegetables have sugar.

  • Artichoke hearts
  • Asparagus
  • Baby corn
  • Beans (green, wax, Italian)
  • Bean sprouts
  • Beets (be careful, beets have a lot of sugar!)
  • Bok Choy
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Broccoli
  • Cabbage
  • Carrots (starch free, but have sugar!)
  • Cauliflower
  • Celery
  • Cucumber
  • Eggplant
  • Hearts of palm
  • Kale, mustard greens, collard greens
  • Lettuce, romaine, spinach, arugula, etc.
  • Mushrooms
  • Okra
  • Onions
  • Pea pods
  • Peppers
  • Radishes
  • Sprouts
  • Squash and zucchini
  • Swiss chard
  • Tomato
  • Turnips

Not with the beets and carrots, just because a vegetables is considered a no starch vegetable, doesn’t mean it has low carbs. Beets and carrots have sugar in them. If you’re looking for no starch vegetables and no carbohydrate vegetables, you want o reference the list below which is starch free and sugar free.

More from JarKitchen! Easy Low Carb Meals

Ways to Cook No Carbohydrate Vegetables

Depending on the vegetable, there are many different ways to cook them. Generally, low to no carb vegetables need spruced up, and a lot. You can never go wrong with garlic and ginger, salt and black pepper. This gives it a much more robust flavor, making vegetables tastier and delicious. You can also maximize your nutrient uptake in the following ways:

Cook Zero Carb Vegetables With Healthy Fats

Vegetables cooked with healthy fats tend to denature the nutrients a bit, but you absorb more of whatever nutrients are left over. The lipids in the fat help the body absorb more of the nutrients in vegetables. Using a healthy fat with a high burn temperature (i.e. avocado oil) is a great way to go, versus something with a low burn temperature like olive oil. If you want to add unadulterated olive oil at the end once you’ve cooked them, that’s another great way to help absorption.

Sprinkle Herbs & Seasonings on No Carb Veggies

Cooking vegetables is a great excuse to sprinkle in herbs for an added health boost. We love to add the following to all of our cooked vegetables:

  • Black pepper and tumeric
  • Garlic salt
  • Oregeno
  • Cayenne
  • Nutritional yeast

Use Nutritional Yeast for Cheesy Flavor

Nutritional yeast is a great way to pack in extra vitamins, minerals and nutrients. It also gives vegetables a very “cheesy” and meaty flavor to them. Sprinkle some nutritional yeast on top of the vegetables as you cook them, and again when you serve them. It truly takes vegetables to a whole different level in terms of taste!

Conclusion

To answer the question posed in the headline, it’s a resounding NO. No carb vegetables do not exist. But if you choose a no starch vegetable with a low carbohydrate count that includes dietary fiber, you can’t get any closer to having a zero carb vegetable.

easy low carb meals

Easy Low Carb Meals – Delicious & Healthy Options!

Easy Low Carb Meals – Delicious & Healthy Options!

easy low carb meals

Half the battle to eating low carb is knowing what to eat. We at the JarKitchen are passionate about food and health, and so we put together this article to help you achieve (and enjoy) easy low carb meals. Without delay, here is what we came up with for low carb breakfast, lunch, and dinner ideas!

Low Carb Breakfast Meals

Breakfast is definitely the easiest meal to prepare as low carb. Because it’s the first meal of the day, it’s easy to be disciplined. For that reason it’s the most important meal of the day, because starting your day out right will help you keep momentum into lunch and dinner. A quick, low carb breakfast meal is what you can consider an atomic habit; something simple that has powerful effects on other habits in your life.

Here are some of our favorite low carb breakfast foods to mix and and match:

    • Eggs – a delicious source of high quality fats and proteins to get your day started. Cook them any way you please.
    • Breakfast meats – bacon, sausage, Canadian bacon, ground turkey and ground beef are great additional options.
    • Avocado – the healthy fats in avocado can give you the energy boost you need if you’re eating low carb.
    • Cheese – cheese adds flavor to just about anything. The most ketogenic friendly cheese is parmesan cheese, which is absolutely delicious when melted. We also love provolone, mozzarella and Havarti.

Benefits of Low Carb, High Protein Breakfast Meals

Eating a high protein, low carb meal will not increase blood sugar levels, which means you won’t have any insulin in your blood. When you have low insulin levels, it becomes easier for the body to burn skeletal fat, in turn helping you lose weight. Lower insulin levels also reduce your appetite.

Additional Reading from JarKitchen: Is Keto Healthy?

Low Carb Lunchbox Ideas

We always believe that the discipline in dieting or healthy low carb eating comes in the grocery aisle. If you don’t buy something unhealthy, you won’t have unhealthy food to eat in your kitchen. Without unhealthy food, it’s easy to eat healthy and not be tempted. Also, peparing your food is how you can stay further disciplined. So if you pack a healthy low carb lunchbox, you’ll be in a position to maintain the momentum you gained from a low carb breakfast meal. Here are some ideas for you.

The Simplest Low Carb Lunch

  • Salmon, Tuna, or Sardines
  • String cheese
  • Apple
  • Kefir Yogurt

Although an apple has carbs, it doesn’t have many. It’s also a low-glycemic carb, which means it has less of an impact on your blood sugar and insulin levels (vs. eating something like a Twinkie). Also, Kefir yogurt has probiotics in it which has been shown to help with weight loss because it’s good for overall gut health. The calcium in yogurt also enhances weight loss, according to a popular 2005 study.

Simple Low Carb Lunches to Go

If you don’t feel like packing a lunch of eating leftovers, you can always grab low carb lunches on the go. Some great options include:

Chipotle

Chipotle is a great place to have a low carb meal for a few reasons. First off, it’s incredibly tasty. Secondly is that if you’re eating low carb, having some sodium in your diet is imperative to having a smooth experience. For some, Chipotle is “salty”, but if you’re eating low carb, it’s a great way to gt the sodium you need.

Jimmy John’s

Believe it or not, Jimmy John’s is a great way to get a simple low carb lunch to go with lettuce wraps. Instead of bread, you can opt to have your sandwich fillings wrapped in lettuce, so you can completely eliminate carbs. While Jimmy John’s isn’t the healthiest of foods (i.e. processed lunch meat), you can pack in a bunch of vegetables like lettuce and tomatoes to make it a good low carb lunch when you’re on the go.

Chicken or Salmon Salad

Wherever you’re working, you likely have access to Uber Eats or some other food delivery service. Choosing a chicken salad eliminates the headache of having to pack a lunch with ingredients from the store. A chicken or salmon salad is a great low carb lunch to go, even if it’s from a place like McDonald’s.

Preparing extra servings of any low carb dinner meals is a great way to have handy leftovers for your low carb lunchbox ideas. Remember, the more low carb food you have available, the easier it will be to stick to your diet.

Low Carb Dinner Meals

Ah, dinner. This is where you make or break a solid full day of low carb eating. It can be tempting to stack on carbs at dinner, especially if you just worked out or try to get a workout the following morning. However, it can be demoralizing to eat low carb all day, only to fail at night. Again, if you don’t buy the groceries, you can’t cook the high-carb meal. But here are some recipes for low carb dinner meals we thoroughly enjoy.

Lemon Pepper Salmon & Broccoli

Arguably the easiest low carb meal you can come up with. Here is how we like to prepare it:

  • Wild caught sockeye or, if you can get your hands on the more delicious, fattier type, Atlantic Salmon (try to avoid farm raised fish)
  • Spray the pan with a zero-calorie avocado or olive oil spray, to avoid unnecessary calories.
  • Add 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) on top and on the bottom (skin) of the salmon.
  • Sprinkle lemon pepper, oregano, and sea salt on the skin, as generously as you’d like.
  • Add similar seasoning to the top of the salmon, but don’t over due it!
  • Slice up an organic lemon, and lay down the slices on top of the salmon.
  • Chop brocoli into bit sized pieces and spray with your zero calorie olive oil or avocado oil, adding salt and black pepper to taste.
  • Bake on 400 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until the salmon is firm.

If you want your broccoli more “raw”, add it after the salmon has been in the oven for a few minutes, so it doesn’t get soggy at that temperature for that time.

Asian Beef & (Miracle) Noodles

Another great and easy low carb meal is beef strips and miracle noodles. Miracle noodles, also known as “Shirataki” noodles, are made from tofu. They have an amazing texture when done right, so be sure to follow our directions!

Preparing the Beef

As with fish, we prefer organic beef, preferably grass fed and finished if you can find it. Sirloin works best, or you can buy beef strips for stew (though the meat is a little tougher). Pad the beef so remove any excess moisture, use one tablespoon of olive oil and rub the beef, then generously add black pepper, sea salt, garlic salt and sweet paprika. Let it sit for about 10 minutes.

Preparing the Noodles

Miracle noodles have a really weird smell, so be prepared. We like to open the pack, put it in a strainer and rinse them under cold water to remove the smell. Then, wrap the noodles in a few paper towels and press them down, absorbing water. Miracle noodles come ready to eat, they just need heated up, so by removing any access fluids, it will preserve the seasoning you put in the pan.

Cooking Everything

Add some non-stick, zero calorie spray to a pan with a touch of olive oil for extra heat, and place the fire on high. After 2 minutes, drop the beef into the pan so it sizzles. Cook until seared on one side, then flip. When you flip it, add the noodles, along with the following items on top:

  • 1 scoop of peanut butter
  • Chopped scallions to taste
  • Low sodium soy sauce
  • Siracha or red chili sauce
  • Fresh minced ginger
  • Fresh minced garlic
  • Fresh minced cilantro

Mix it up in a noodle pan until everything is blended together, but only after the uncooked side of the beef has had an opportunity to cook. Cook everything on high heat and never let it sit.

Finish with some bean sprouts, crushed peanuts, fresh scallions as you wish, siracha sauce, cilantro and a lime.

#1 Tip to Easy Low Carb Meals

We cannot iterate this enough – the easiest way to maintain the course with easy low carb meals is to buy the ingredients! The discipline is not in the kitchen, but in the grocery aisle. The more healthy ingredients you have on hand, the easier it will be to eat low carb. If you don’t buy it, you can’t eat it! It’s a simple as that.

is keto healthy

Is Keto Healthy? Weigh the Pros and Cons

Is Keto Healthy? Weigh the Pros and Cons

is keto healthy

There is a lot of mixed science about the ketogenic diet, also known as “keto”. I’m sure you’ve come across individuals who are on the keto diet, and the first thing you ask is “wow, you look great, what are you doing?”. Some swear by it, and others say it’s backfired against them. Given the mixed reviews and mixed science, we thought it was appropriate to address the oft-asked question circulating the internet today: is keto healthy? Read on to find out and explore some interesting recipes.

What is the keto and is it healthy?

The ketogenic diet is a diet that puts the body into a state of “ketosis”, which is when your liver produced ketones for energy instead of glucose. Generally speaking, when we eat carbs, our body processes the carbohydrates for fuel, in the form of glucose. However when the body is in ketosis the liver is producing ketones for fuel instead of glucose. The ketogenic diet is made up of a diet that consists mostly of fat, some protein, and little to no carbohydrates.

Keto Nutrient Breakdown

Macronutrients include protein, fat, and carbohydrates. According to Harvard, the recommended macronutrient breakdown for the keto diet is 70-80% fat, 10-20% protein, and 5-10% fats.

The ketogenic diet is wildly popular because of it’s ability to help individuals rapidly lose weight. Despite the health benefits associated with less skeletal fat, the diet does come with some downside risks. Read on to find out and answer the question we always hear, is keto healthy?

Interested in Keto? Check out JarKitchen’s Easy Low Carb Meals!

The Good, The Bad, The Ugly

Like any good thing in life, there are downsides. Here we explore the benefits and risks of the keto diet.

Benefits of the Keto Diet

Diets don’t become popular for no reason. Stepping on the scene in late 2015, the diet gained widespread traction for it’s weight loss effects and mental clarity. Here are the top 10 benefits of Keto, if you ask most people:

Reduced Appetite

Low carb diets like keto reduce appetite, because it stabilizes your blood sugar levels. When your blood sugar levels are stable, the level and amount of insulin released by your pancreas is also stable. Insulin ignites hunger, the more stable your insulin levels are, the less hungry you will be. In sum, lower carbs = lower blood sugar level = lower insulin levels = less appetite = you lose weight.

Rapid Weight Loss

Another benefit is rapid weight loss within the first few weeks, helping you quickly achieve weight goals. For every 120-140 grams of carbohydrates, you’ll gain a pound of water weight. By eliminating carbs, not only will it stabilize your insulin levels, but you’ll immediately notice a drop in weight from reduced water being held in bodily tissues.

Abdominal Fat Loss

Most fat loss comes from the abdominal region, which is directly correlated to better health. The old adage “pinch an inch” is the best way to determine if you have any available fat to lose. The keto diet is a great way to reduce abdominal fat.

Lower Triglycerides

Triglycerides, fat in the blood, tend to drop significantly on a keto diet, which brings with it significant health benefits.

Good Cholesterol Goes Up

When on the keto diet, good cholesterol, also known as HDL, tends to go up. Typically, when we hear about cholesterol, we think it’s a bad thing, but having a high HDL has been shown to reduce bad cholesterol and keeps it from collecting in your arteries.

Bad Cholesterol Goes Down

The flip side is when HDL rises, LDL tends to go down. If you’re doing something healthy, you’ll get a double effect on cholesterol. Working out and overall eliminating saturated fats will have the same affect.

Blood Sugar Stabilizes

Unstable blood sugar levels constantly rising and falling is associated with weight gain and potentially Type 2 diabetes given how taxing this is on the pancreas. On a keto diet, blood sugar and insulin levels tend to stabilizes. In fact, some doctors claim this is the number one way to lose weight, by stabilizing blood sugar which stabilizes insulin levels.

Lower Blood Pressure

Studies have shown the keto diet helps to stabilize and lower blood pressure. Lower blood pressure is associated with reduced risks of hypertension, which if left untreated, can cause strokes.

Given all the benefits, is it any wonder why the diet is so popular?

Risk of the Keto Diet

Keto Flu

The keto diet is not without risks. The first side effect is keto flu, which is basically your body going into shock after not eating carbs. The first time I tried keto, I had a headache in the front of my head that felt like a heartbeat – a classic sympton of keto flu. Carbohydrates are a big part of our diet; so if you suddenly cut your carbs down, you will end up feeling sick, which is known as the keto flu. The keto flu lasts 48-72 hours after you begin, then disappears for most people.

Kidney Stones

Another major risk is that keto is bad for your kidneys. Without carbohydrates, and tons of animal fat and protein, you may be at risk to develop kidney stones. Kidney stones can be very painful, often said the pain is similar to going into labor to birth a child.

Poor Gut Health

The best way to keep your gut healthy is with plant fiber, like from fruits and vegetables. Without plant fiber, you may disrupt the bacteria in your gut, which helps with digestion and going to the restroom on a regular schedule. Poor gut health has also been show to cause depression, which can be ancillary side affect of the diet.

Nutrient Deficiencies

Some of the most nutrient dense foods are plants. Without sufficient plant consumption, you may end up nutritionally malnourished just eating fats and proteins.

Other side effects

Other side effects include dangerously low blood sugar, weakened bone strength and the onset of chronic diseases. While the verdict is still out on how dangerous keto is, apparently it has many health benefits.

Is the Keto Diet Safe?

At the end of the day, you have to do your research and make the decision for yourself. There is so much mixed science out there and so many people who had amazing or horrible experiences with it. Like Tim Ferris says, your body is the best lab. If something works for you, great. You’re in the best position to decide. If you want to try it for yourself and see how you feel, be sure to check in regularly with your doctor to make sure everything is fine. Let’s dive in on whether keto is good for certain organs, like your heart and liver.

Is Keto Heart Healthy?

A recent study published by the Journal of the American College of Cardiology found that ketone bodies can help protect the heart in patients with heart disease.

is keto heart healthy

According to the study, a keto diet can reduce inflammation with the lowering of oxidative stress and improvement of mitochondrial functioning. The study was so promising, that the authors suggest some heart patients can take “exogenous” or external ketones as an alternative to the diet, to increase ketones in the blood without the pressures of dieting. Although the study is promising, the authors note that there has yet to be a study determining the long-term effects of the keto diet, which is unknown. Other studies show the keto diet is good for fatty liver.

Is Keto Good for Fatty Liver?

A recent study suggests the keto diet is good for treating non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). NAFLD is the presence of too much fat in the liver. Historically fatty liver was only seen in patients who consumed a lot of alcohol, but due to modern day diets, many are ending up with fatty livers due to diet, hence the name non-alcholic fatty liver disease. The study showed that the presence of ketone’s produced by the liver can help reduce liver fat, decrease insulin levels, reverse the disease process, suppress appetite, and promote weight loss.

Is Keto Dieting Healthy?

As mentioned above, your body is the best laboratory. It’s up to you to try it out and see what happens. Before you do anything, it’s best to consult with your doctor.

*Medical disclaimer: nothing int his article should be construed as medical advice. Rather, this is just an informative article referencing medical studies and journals. Please be sure to do your research and consult with a medical doctor before taking any major health action.

pomegranate juice benefits

Benefits of Pomegranate Juice

10 Amazing Pomegranate Juice Benefits at Your Door!

pomegranate juice benefits

First of all, pomegranate Juice offers many health benefits as it is rich in antioxidant polyphenols that can turn vascular inflammation and atherosclerosis, and thus it reduces blood pressure levels. Pomegranate juice also has other anti-inflammatory effects that effect immediately after drinking just five ounces of pomegranate juice per day for two weeks. Keep reading to learn more benefits of pomegranate juice!

The Pomegranate fruit contains a range of useful plant compounds, unparalleled by other foods. The anti-inflammatory properties available in the pomegranate juice can also reduce the growth of cancer cells, including prostate, breast, and also controls the inflammation connected with arthritis.

Before you continue, you will want to check our ultimate guide on the best pomegranate juicers here!

Clinic in the glass!

The pomegranate juice also reduces dental inflammations around the gingival border that controls periodontitis and gingivitis, in part as the pomegranate juice also contains an anti-bacterial capacity. We tried to share basic pomegranate juice benefits with you, so let’s begin!

Studies have also shown that Pomegranate juice offers several health benefits and helps your body reduce the risk of different types of diseases. This fruit is also loaded with healthy and important nutrients.

It is considered as a berry, and the pomegranate fruit is around two to five inches in diameter. Furthermore, the fruit is round, red, and looks like a red apple.

Pomegranate has thick and inedible skin, but the skin enclosed sweet juice seeds within that are edible. Each seed is covered with juicy, red and it is known as an aril. These seeds are either eaten raw or you can make pomegranate juice to drink.

ambulance, doctor, medical

Pomegranate juice contains a remarkable nutrient list, and one cup that is 174gms of arils contains:

  • 7gms of Fiber
  • 3gms of Protein
  • 30% of Vitamin C
  • 36% of Vitamin K
  • 16% of Folate
  • 12% of Potassium
  • 24gms of sugar and
  • 144 calories in one cup of juice

Pomegranate contains powerful plant compounds and some of these compounds offer strong medicinal properties. Here you can find some of the best health benefits of pomegranate.

Medical Benefits of Pomegranate Juice

Antioxidants:

Pomegranate contains antioxidant properties and its seeds get the dark red color from polyphenols. These chemicals contain strong antioxidants. Pomegranate juice is rich in antioxidants compared to other fruit juices.

This pomegranate juice also contains 3-times more antioxidants compared to green tea and red wine. The antioxidants in the juice can reduce free radicals, reduce inflammation, and protects cells from damage! Some scientists study pomegranates for medical purposes and found out even more health benefits.

Vitamin C:

In one Pomegranate fruit, you can get 40 percent of vitamin C which is required for your daily requirement. However, pasteurized juices will not offer Vitamin C that is why choosing fresh or homemade pomegranate juice can help you get more nutrients and more health benefits.

Powerful Medicinal Properties:

Pomegranates contain two exclusive substances that offer the best health benefits. The two unique substances are Punicalgins and Punicic Acid.

  • Punicalagins: This substance offers strong antioxidant available in the pomegranate peel and juice. In addition, The powerful pomegranate juice contains three times more antioxidants are found in green tea and red wine.
  • Punicic Acid: This substance is found in pomegranate seed oil, and it is the major arils fatty acid. Furthermore, this punicic acid is a type of combined linoleic acid with strong biological effects.

Cancer prevention:

According to researchers’ reports, the pomegranate juice may help the individual prevent the growth of prostate cancer cells. Although there are many studies conducted on the effects of pomegranate juice on prostate cancer, the results are still in the beginning stages.

There are no long-term studies conducted on humans that show that pomegranate juice reduces or prevents cans and the risk, but adding the juice in your regular diet can surely help you in many ways. However, many studies supported the results, but yet the bigger studies are needed to be conducted to analyze accurate results.

The first round of evidence shows that pomegranate juice can be helpful for people who are suffering from prostate cancer, reduces potential cancer growth and reduces the risk of death.

Alzheimer’s disease safety:

mental health, psychology, psychiatry

One of the pomegranate juice benefits is that the antioxidants in pomegranate juice and the high concentration levels of antioxidants in the pomegranate juice can stop the growth of Alzheimer‘s disease and shield memory. Therefore, it might be a good idea to start drinking pomegranate juice at late ages, so that the risk of Alzheimer’s disease decreases.

Pomegranate Juice Reduces Breast Cancer:

Currently, breast cancer is the most common type of cancer in women. Drinking pomegranate juice every day can reduce or even kill the production of breast cancer cells However, the results are presently limited to research studies. More studies need to be conducted before making any claims.

Laboratory researches show that pomegranates can help fight breast cancer cells, but more studies are required to confirm the statement.

Digestion:

Pomegranate juice can help you reduce inflammation in the stomach and helps you improve your digestion. It also helps the people suffering from ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease, and other inflammatory diseases.

However, there are some contradictory researches and beliefs on whether pomegranate juice worsens or helps diarrhea, most medical professionals suggest avoid drinking the juice until your diarrhea stops and symptoms have reduced.

Arthritis:

Pomegranate juice contains Flavonols that may block the inflammation that adds to cartilage damage and osteoarthritis. Therefore the researchers are currently trying to find the potential effects of pomegranate juice on rheumatoid arthritis, osteoporosis, and other joint inflammation and types of arthritis.

Blood Pressure:

Currently, high blood pressure or hypertension is one of the major issues that are leading to strokes and heart attacks. A recent study shows that people with high blood pressure shown a significant decrease in blood pressure level after drinking 5-ounces of pomegranate juice every day for two weeks.

Different studies also have shown similar effects, particularly for systolic blood pressure that contains higher blood pressure reading. Drinking pomegranate juice regularly can reduce blood pressure levels just within two weeks.

Heart disease:

Pomegranate juice is considered the best juices for heart health and it can protect the arteries and heart. Furthermore, the studies show that pomegranate juice enhances blood flow and protects the arteries from getting thick and stiff. Another study shows that drinking pomegranate juice daily improves your immune system.

Pomegranate juice is in the running as the most heart-healthy juice and it appears to protect the heart and arteries. Also, this juice can slow the growth of plaque and cholesterol build up in the arteries. However, if you are on cholesterol and blood pressure medication, then it is advisable to consult your doctor before drinking the pomegranate juice regularly.

pomegranate, fruit, seeds

Pomegranate Juice Benefits: Conclusion

These are some of the health benefits that you can get by drinking pomegranate juice just five ounces per day. However, it is also important to consult your doctor to make sure that it won’t hamper with your medication. Also, diabetic patients should consult their doctors before consuming pomegranate juice.

You can check also other pomegranate juice benefits here people!

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