What can I eat? Is a low carb diet too restrictive?

I think initially it seems so. You have come to the Lifestyle Clinic and one of the first things I tell you is not to eat bread, pasta and spuds, at this point most people then ask ‘But what can I eat’? It is difficult to picture a satisfying meal without these elements that we have eaten them all our lives! Initially, the diet can feel restrictive, especially if you don’t learn more about the basics. Do a little research, there are loads of cookbooks and websites to help, check out our recipe folder, all will inspire you from family favourites, curry’s, bread, cakes, muffins to fancy dinner party menus. You will soon have a repertoire of tasty meals and snacks that will please all.

It can be overwhelming to start with. I recommend you follow a plan for the first few weeks - check out Diet Doctor or Redicare, and you will quickly realise that you will have more variety not less. You will learn to have/ make alternatives that are tasty and satisfying and they will soon replace your old carb heavy /processed food based meals.

Yes it’s a steep learning curve. You can’t just march into a filling station and grab a breakfast roll or stop for pizza on your way home.

Most people become good in knowing their staple alternatives and stick with them. There is nothing wrong with that, but humans like variety. I like to encourage people to experiment a bit and surprise themselves. And I feel sometimes people can get too hung up about their carb count. Food is so much more. The plate should reflect it. It needs to be full of nutrition and vitamins (that’s your veggies and good proteins) and satisfying (doesn’t everything taste better with butter?)

The sliced ham that becomes a wrap? Chocolate pudding is still on the menu, brownie and cheesecake are still a sweet treat, restrictive it isn’t in my opinion.

I have learnt to prep some basics and I double recipes amount to freeze so I have quick dinners, a sweet treat or some flavoured butters to brighten up a weekday pork chop - a life saver in our busy lives. Bagels and bread can be made, sliced and frozen for quick re toasting.

Prepping for the week is key to a successful change of diet. We will blog on the ‘Art of Prepping’ soon I reckon, or even a workshop - let me know what you would prefer?

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