I would like to start off this post by mentioning that I am not an advocate of a low carb diet, especially one that excludes whole grains. I firmly believe that grains are an important part of a well balanced diet as they are loaded with micronutrients and complex carbohydrates that contribute to good energy and a better mood. That being said, there are certain moments when it may be a good idea to limit your grain intake. For example if you’ve hit a plateau, overeaten the day before, are prepping for a fitness competition or if you need to tweak your diet in order to include more veggies instead. Under these circumstances I say go for it, but be sure to maintain the same amount of calories as before and be ware that reducing your carbs too low can affect your overall energy levels and mood. As such, I’ve included some simple low carb side dish recipes below to give you some ideas on how to include more veggies in your diet.
1 teaspoon olive oil
¼ cup tomato sauce (if using store bought, check the label for any added sugar)
- Using a peeler, peel the zucchini into thin strips so that it resembles linguini-type pasta
- Heat oil in a pan over medium heat. When heated add in the zucchini and sauté for 1 minute.
- Add in the tomato sauce and stir to combine. Sauté for 1 minute. Remove from heat and serve immediately.
1 Portobello mushroom
1 teaspoon olive oil
3 tablespoons tomato sauce 1 tablespoon chopped onion
½ cup fresh spinach
- Clean the mushroom by taking a damp towel and gently wiping it down, and then brush the mushroom cap with olive oil.
- Place the mushroom stem side down on a baking sheet and add the sauce on top followed by the onions and then the spinach.
- Bake at 375 degrees for about 20 minutes. Remove from oven and serve immediately. Can be stored up to three days in the refrigerator.
Another good low carb option is to replace the bread/tortilla/pita any recipe with lettuce. For example with a burger instead of a bun use butter lettuce or instead of a tortilla for your fajitas use romaine lettuce leaves.
The recipes mentioned here are straight forward and quick to prepare. Like I said though, if you are looking to reduce carbs in your diet be sure to maintain your calorie intake in order to support the energy levels you need to get through your day and your tough workout.
Start It, Finish It