I am going to wager that you are just like me. Before you know it, dinner time comes up quick after a long day at work or a busy weekend; and you are too tired to cook one of the hundreds of fancy low carb meals that you have pinned on Pinterest. Rather than giving in to the temptation of “fast food,” I want to share with you some ideas to keep you away from the carb infested fast food restaurants or to help you eat smart when lured to them. As a thank you gift for visiting my blog, I would like to send you a printable card with quick low carb food ideas and how to calculate net carbs. (Contact me and I will e-mail you the printable card.) Keep the card in your purse, wallet, glove box, taped to the steering wheel, on the refrigerator, etc. I want you to be successful on this high fat & low carb lifestyle. We are in this together! I get a little excited, it must be the ketones!
Why does this high fat and low carb way of eating make people happy? As I said in my excitement, it is the ketones that make us happy. When you eat less carbohydrates (20-50 grams/day), your body learns to use fat for energy and this is called lipolysis. (I stick to under 20 grams of carbs per day.) During this melting of fat, glycerol and other fatty acids are formed, which then those break down into ketones. Having an increase in ketones promotes the production of gamma aminobutyric acid (GABA), a neurotransmitter in the brain that improves mood. Changes to my mood did not occur over night, but did happen after the first couple of weeks.
To control any hunger pangs, I drink lots of water with added essential oils such as grapefruit essential oil or lemon essential oil. I love the lemon and grapefruit essential oils because they not only are carb free, but also have many health benefits. The oils last so much longer than perishable fruits (which a majority of fruits are a No-No anyway). You only need to add a drop or two of the oils to one water bottle. Lemon essential oil is great for focus. Aromatherapist, KG Stiles shared that Japanese scientists studied the effects of lemon essential oil and discovered that mistakes were reduced by 54%!!!
Grapefruit essential oil has been proven to help regulate weight and curb sweet cravings, according to Stiles. I can attest to grapefruit oil curbing my own appetite and cravings. You may have already experienced digestive issues on this way of eating. If so, there are digestive benefits to using the grapefruit essential oil as well. It is nice to be able to use a natural supplement that will cost you a fraction of what an over the counter synthetic laxative or indigestion medication might cost. And the oils taste wonderful!
Before I knew it, my carb-ivores reminded me that it was 5 o’clock, and almost dinner time. I have been doing this way of eating for over 26 weeks now and I did not want fast food. Nothing at home was appetizing or quick to cook. I stopped at the grocery store and bought a rotisserie chicken for $5.99, a couple stalks of broccoli for $1.79 and an avocado for $1.50. I was in and out of the store in 5 minutes. It took me 7 minutes to prep and steam cook the broccoli (4 grams of net carbs), which I tinseled with freshly shredded Parmesan Cheese (0 grams of net carbs) and salt and pepper. Of course the rotisserie chicken was 0 grams of net carbs. I cut the avocado in half (1 ½ grams of net carbs), sliced it and garnished it with pesto (mine was 0 grams of net carbs). This entire meal was 5 ½ grams of net carbs, not bad for the time spent prepping the meal and the cost. There were even leftovers after feeding my family of four.
If I had made the decision to go to a fast food restaurant, I would go inside (even if taking the order to go) because I want the nutrition information for all the foods on the menu. I like to see the carb nutrition information with my own eyes.
If I had gone to a fast food place that had burgers, I would order a burger without the sauce, cheese if it is not processed (ie. Cheddar or provolone), with pickles and maybe mustard. Processed cheeses, onions, and ketchup have more carbs than it is worth to me. If you have to have ketchup, onions or American Cheese, just make sure your count the carbs.
Sandwich or sub places have good low carb menu option. Again, look at the carb nutrition information. Many sandwich or sub places will do lettuce wraps or even put your fixings in a salad. Make sure the mayonnaise is real mayo and not miracle whip. Real mayonnaise has 0 net carbs.
Salads buffets are a good place to get a personalized low carb salad. Just look at my low carb food card to see acceptable vegetables to add. (Remember to contact me and I will email you the free card) Blue Cheese salad dressing and oils are good low carb options. Ask the waiter to see the nutrition information on the salad dressing bottles if needed.
Fast food fried chicken is only good if the chicken is grilled and not breaded. Do not even order a breaded chicken and try to scrape the toppings off, the sugars have already seeped into the meat.
I would avoid any fast food places with Mexican food, ice cream shops and bakeries. If you go to a pizza joint with your family, just eat the fixings on top, trying to avoid eating too much of the sauce or even any of the crust. Some pizza shops will make a crust less pizza, which is ok.
Calculating net carbs is something that you will master quickly on this way of eating. In case you have not learned yet, here are the steps for calculating net carbs:
1. Look at your food label and find “Total Carbohydrate.”
2. Next, check to see the grams of Fiber and Sugar Alcohols, NOT SUGAR.
3. Subtract the grams of Fiber and Sugar Alcohols from the Total Carbohydrates and that will equal your net carbs.
Thanks again for following and reading. Let me know if you have any questions. Please be sure to contact me for the free low carb card.