LCHF (Low Carb, Healthy Fat), commonly referred to a low carb high fat diet
On a LCHF diet you eat less carbohydrates and a higher proportion of fat. You also minimise your intake of sugar and starchy foods. This works really well for weight loss and insulin resistance/diabetes.
In general you eat: meat, fish, eggs, vegetables (that grow above ground) and natural fats (like butter, coconut oil, olive oil). You avoid sugar and starchy foods (including bread, pasta, beans, rice and potatoes). When you eat this way, you only eat when you are hungry and until you are satisfied.
Avoiding sugar and starchy foods helps your blood sugar to stabilise and reduces the need for insulin. This helps with weight loss because insulin is the fat storing hormone. Eating this way stops those blood glucose highs and lows and you stop craving carbohydrates/sugar.
LCHF not working for you? We can help
Fat was falsely blamed for all of our health problems and we are still only just recovering from the fat fear that has been normal for the past 30 or so years. Low fat products are unfortunately still very popular, they are by nature usually high in sugar because without fat there is no flavour. Since we have been eating a low fat/high carbohydrate diet (the SAD diet - standard Australian/American diet) we have become fatter and sicker; with obesity, diabetes and dementia all growing to frightening levels. Our fear of real food with natural fat has been a huge mistake! In studies low carbohydrate diets improve weight, blood pressure, glucose levels, triglycerides and cholesterol profile.
Diabetic? Not sure if LCHF is good for you - we can help
When you think about it, in nature, animals don’t need the assistance of diet guidelines, pyramids or plates to eat. When they eat the food they are designed to eat they stay a normal weight avoiding diabetes and heart disease. They only gain weight and have these health problems when we interfere with what they eat (eg grain feeding cattle). Why are humans any different? Fiona has written more about this here in Diet Health and the Wisdom of Crowds.
If you suddenly stop eating sugar and starch, you may experience some side effects while your body is adjusting. Fatigue, headache, dizziness, palpitations and irritability are common. The effects start to subside as your body adapts and your ability to burn fat as fuel. It is advised to drink more fluids and increase your salt intake for a few weeks. Carbohydrate-rich foods may increase the water retention in your body so when you stop eating high-carb foods, you excrete more water and this can result in dehydration and a lack of salt initially.
At Informed Health Nutritional Wellbeing Centre, we use many of the same principles as the LCHF diet. Ultimately each person has different needs so we work with you to find the diet that works best for you. We are LCHF and paleo friendly nutritionists and can help you make these changes!
Where's the science? Here is a link to a list of some high quality human studies showing that low carbohydrate diets not only work, but they work significantly better than other diets. There is also a comprehensive list of books, links and resources at the bottom of this page.
Important note: Please seek professional advice if you have high blood pressure, diabetes or kidney disease or if you are on medications like warfarin before changing your diet. A reduced carbohydrate diet should decrease your need for diabetes medication. Taking the same dose of insulin as you did prior to adopting a low-carb diet can result in hypoglycaemia (low blood glucose). You will need to test your blood sugar often (several times a day) when starting this diet and adapt (reduce) your medication. This should be done with the assistance of your doctor. If you are healthy or a diabetic treated either by diet alone or just with Metformin there is no risk of hypoglycaemia.
Want to know how many carbs are right for you? We can help
1.Keto Clarity, Your Definitive Guide to the Benefits of a Low-Carb, High-Fat Diet Hardcover
by Jimmy Moore and Eric Westman MD
2.The Big Fat Surprise, Why Butter, Meat & Cheese Belong in a Healthy Diet
by Nina Teicholz
3.The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Living by Jeff S. Volek and Stephen D. Phinney
4.Low Carb, High Fat Food Revolution, Advice and Recipes to Improve Your Health and Reduce Your Weight by Andreas Eenfeldt
5.The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Performance by Jeff S. Volek and Stephen D. Phinney
Other resources, websites, videos:
Low Carb Downunder: http://www.lowcarbdownunder.com.au/
The Big Fat Fix film: http://www.thebigfatfix.com/
The Food Revolution - AHS 2011, Dr Andreas Eenfeldt, a great talk, well worth watching:
Diet Health and the Wisdom of Crowds, Tom Naugton, another great talk: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KzPnnDDCIjo&list=FLUB7pfPQCxNL8dkmGRIXgRw&index=1
Jeff S. Volek and Stephen D. Phinney, Art and Science of Low Carb: http://www.artandscienceoflowcarb.com/
Dr Gary Fettke: http://www.nofructose.com/gary-fettke/
Jimmy Moore: http://www.livinlavidalowcarb.com/
Dr Andreas Eenfelt: http://www.dietdoctor.com/weight-loss-time-to-stop-denying-the-science and http://www.dietdoctor.com/category/health-problems/diabetes
Professor Tim Noakes: http://realmealrevolution.com/
Christine Cronau, The Fat Revolution: http://christinecronau.com/