No carbohydrate diet

no-carb diet for weight loss

Excess weight in most cases is caused by an excessive supply of adipose tissue, deposited as a result of chemical transformations of carbohydrates entering the body. And although obesity is based on certain disruptions in the endocrine and digestive systems, the most comfortable and painless solution to the problem remains limiting the source of excess calories in the process of everyday nutrition. By stopping or critically reducing access to the stomach of easily digestible carbohydrates using a carbohydrate-free diet, we automatically trigger the reaction of burning accumulated reserves.

What is a no-carb diet

It is on the basis of a carbohydrate-free diet that athletes lose extra pounds before competitions, artists on the eve of filming, and public figures when they need to get in shape. Athletes even have a special term for such nutrition. It is called "drying" - by eliminating carbohydrates from the diet, subcutaneous fat deposits are removed and the relief and elasticity of ligaments and muscles is improved. But life without carbohydrates is a difficult test for those with a sweet tooth, who are forced to radically change their taste preferences, and for a fairly long period of time. It requires not only determination, but also a fair amount of patience and willpower.

There is also the other side of the coin - a complete rejection of carbohydrates in favor of protein products causes a condition that nutritionists call the not entirely correct term carbophobia (literally "fear of carbohydrates"). Avoiding the slightest crumb of bread or a piece of sugar like fire, not thinking about anything other than losing weight, sitting for months "on omelettes and cutlets, " fans of a carbohydrate-free diet inevitably "earn" digestive and metabolic problems, in some cases fraught with disorders of the higher nervous system. activities, memory loss, depression and sociopathy.

Long-term or constant refusal of carbohydrates causes a disorder of the acid-base balance in the direction of acidification of the body, which inevitably leads to decreased immunity and premature aging. A side effect of a prolonged low-carbohydrate diet is problems with the intestines, kidneys, arthritis, gout and other ailments.

Below we will look at several examples of a carbohydrate-free diet and a scheme for its use, which allows you to normalize metabolic processes, get rid of excess weight and at the same time not go to extremes, pumping the body to capacity with proteins of animal origin with their far from harmless chemistry and energy.

Biochemical and anatomical basis of a low-carbohydrate diet

The decisive argument for a low-carbohydrate diet is the peculiarity of the body’s reaction to the entry of even a small amount of sugar into the stomach. The pancreas immediately begins to reflexively release insulin into the blood, and digestive enzymes into the stomach, which instantly increase appetite (that’s why they say that appetite comes with eating). As a result, when we eat foods rich in carbohydrates, we almost always eat more than we objectively need. Protein foods do not have such a seductive effect on the "pancreas", the production of hormones and enzymes proceeds in working order, saturation occurs gradually and fully. Proteins are broken down in the gastrointestinal tract much longer than carbohydrates, so the feeling of fullness lasts for several hours, and the need for snacks simply does not arise if you have three or four protein meals a day.

Principle 250 kcal

Most likely, it will not be possible to completely give up carbohydrates - simply because they are included in even completely protein dishes, albeit in minimal quantities. But this is not scary, the main thing is that the specified number of "carbohydrate" kilocalories is not exceeded.

A low-carbohydrate diet certainly requires willpower, but its use can be very disciplined. It is enough to remember one single number - 250. This is the number of energy units - calories, which are contained in the daily volume of carbohydrates entering the body. Of course, we will have to carefully weigh all the dishes and calculate their energy value using special tables or notes on the restaurant menu, but this is an almost inevitable cost of any strict diet.

Carbohydrate mono-diet: effective, but monotonous

An ideal low-carbohydrate diet for guaranteed and quick weight loss involves separate daily meals - on the first day of the diet you eat only chicken, on the second - only eggs, on the third - only cheese or cottage cheese. This is the fastest, but also the most "tasteless" and monotonous way to lose weight. Not everyone is ready for such sacrifices, so we will lose weight without fanaticism and combine business with pleasure - a healing effect with gastronomic pleasures, which are promised by tasty and healthy products based on animal and plant proteins.

By the way, the aforementioned critical 250 notorious carbohydrate kilocalories per day should also be gained not from buns and sweets, but by harmoniously including complex carbohydrates (long to digest) in the diet - vegetables not rich in starch, cereals, yeast-free whole grain bread.

Basic ingredients of a no-carb menu

Here is a list of protein foods intended for a protein diet:

  • lean meat - chicken, turkey, rabbit, veal;
  • offal – stewed heart and liver;
  • duck, chicken, quail egg;
  • sea fish fillets, crabs, shrimp, lobsters, sea cephalopods;
  • dairy products - kefir, yogurt, grain cottage cheese, low-fat sour cream and hard cheese;
  • leafy vegetables (cabbage), artichokes, green peas, beans, zucchini, onions, garlic, garden herbs. You can eat mushrooms, but with caution, since mushroom proteins are different from animals;
  • sour berries and fruits, as well as avocados;
  • nuts and seeds.

Meat and fish should be cooked by steaming, in the oven, or maximum on the grill, but in no case in a frying pan or deep-frying.

A proper diet excludes sausages, sausages, and pates that contain a lot of dubious additives based on carbohydrates and transgenic fats.

When choosing food suppliers, you need to give preference to farms where meat and dairy animals are kept in comfortable conditions and do not receive various growth hormones and antibiotics in their feed. You should not trust price tags in supermarkets - if you are on a diet, carefully read the instructions on the packaging and study in advance the list of food additives, many of which are harmful to health, but are used in the manufacture of notorious "healthy" products.

banned carbohydrates

Banned carbohydrates

Now about the main thing for every diet - what is prohibited. On a low-carbohydrate diet, the following is prohibited:

  • bread, except whole grain without yeast;
  • everything made from flour - pasta, pizza, pies, khachapuri, cakes, pastries;
  • chocolate and confectionery;
  • sweet and sour-sweet fruits and berries;
  • vegetables rich in starch (potatoes, carrots, corn, beets);
  • semi-finished industrial products. No matter what manufacturers write on the packaging, they almost always contain carbohydrate additives and preservatives, and even genetically modified fats;
  • fruit juices and carbonated drinks;
  • alcohol in any form.

Convinced meat eaters will find it difficult to resist a glass of red wine with their favorite steak, but here you have to choose: health or pleasure. Alcohol, in addition to its direct toxic effect on the body, is also a powerful appetite stimulant and a fairly high-calorie product - the calories obtained with it can be safely added to the 250 kcal that is the daily limit for a protein diet.

Menu for 7 days

low-carbohydrate diet menu for a week


  • Breakfast - Cheesecakes made from low-fat cottage cheese with bran.
  • Lunch - Vegetable salad with herbs, 200 g chicken breast with herbs.
  • Snack - Orange.
  • Dinner - Turkey 100 g with stewed vegetables.


  • Breakfast - Omelette with vegetable salad or stewed vegetables. Black tea without sugar.
  • Lunch - Vegetable cream soup with pieces of turkey or chicken.
  • Snack - Green apple.
  • Dinner - Salmon baked in the oven.


  • Breakfast - Unsweetened muesli with milk and dried apricots or other dried fruits.
  • Lunch - Lentil soup with chicken breast.
  • Snack - Almonds or other nuts (a handful).
  • Dinner - Salad of cherry tomatoes, arugula, canned tuna (1 can) and mozzarella.


  • Breakfast - Oatmeal with water without sugar. One banana (can be chopped and added to oatmeal).
  • Lunch - Vegetable soup with veal meatballs.
  • Snack - Orange or grapefruit, a glass of citrus juice.
  • Dinner - Low-fat steamed fish.


  • Breakfast - Mix of 1 banana, a glass of fresh or defrosted pitted cherries and a glass of milk. Mix in a blender.
  • Lunch - Chicken pilaf 200 g.
  • Snack - Green tea with a piece of hard cheese.
  • Dinner - Chicken or turkey with vegetable salad.


  • Breakfast - Egg white omelet. Unsweetened tea. 1 banana.
  • Lunch - Boiled chicken breast 100 g with brown rice.
  • Snack - Sandwich made from unleavened bread, soft cheese, ham, lettuce and sliced tomatoes.
  • Dinner - Vegetable sauté with meat. A glass of kefir or unsweetened drinking yogurt.


  • Breakfast - 1 hard-boiled egg. Diet bread with hard cheese.
  • Lunch - Cream soup of champignons or wild mushrooms. You can add chopped turkey or chicken to the soup.
  • Snack - Orange, green apple or a handful of nuts.
  • Dinner - Vegetable salad, 100 g of oven-baked meat or fish.

Porridge for a low-carbohydrate diet

Porridges on water occupy a borderline position. When dieting without carbohydrates, it is recommended to include four types of cereals on the menu:

No. Name Protein content Carbohydrate content
1 Buckwheat eleven% 68%
2 Pea 21% 50%
3 Oatmeal 12% 65%
4 Quinoa 14% 64%
Porridges are especially useful in the intervals between periods of active weight loss, when you need to restore the balance of fats, proteins and carbohydrates in the body.

A dubious alternative: the keto diet In the United States, with its notorious fast food culture, a very popular type of carbohydrate-free diet is the ketogenic diet, which allows you to eat large quantities of not only proteins, but also animal fats. This scheme has both supporters and opponents. The main argument of the latter is the harm of fatty foods to the cardiovascular system, due to the deposition of cholesterol on the walls of blood vessels. It's hard to disagree with this.

Diet timing and precautions

The effect of the diet begins to appear after two to three weeks; with strict daily separate meals, you can lose weight within a week after switching to proteins. Limiting quickly digestible food will almost inevitably cause intestinal disorders - constipation, flatulence, caused by a decrease in the content of plant fiber in food. When eating a meat menu or eating fish and seafood, you must drink at least two liters of liquid a day, eat soups, and if you have constant constipation, take mild laxatives. After a month, to avoid the development of persistent carbophobia, you should take a break - from two to four weeks. It will restore the disturbed protein-carbohydrate balance and intestinal motility. While taking a break from dieting, you shouldn’t go to great lengths: the diet should be balanced and strict, otherwise you will not only lose all your gains, but also gain additional fat deposits, and you’ll have to start the fight against excess weight all over again.