Fats and Oils
Generally, the digestive tract of most people cannot tolerate eating a large amount of vegetable oils, mayonnaise or even olive oil over time. Moreover, vegetable oils are abundant in polyunsaturated Omega-6 fatty acids (commonly found in nut oils, margarine, sunflower oil, safflower oil, canola oil and sunflower oil) which are known to trigger inflammation within the body and can lead to a disease if they are the only source of fat. Also, cooking with them is not recommended.
Furthermore, most nuts (except macadamias and walnuts) are high in omega-6 fatty acids so, consume them in moderation. On the other hand, omega 6 and 3 fatty acids are essential polyunsaturated fats and they should be balanced. You need about one teaspoon a day. Consuming tuna, wild salmon and shellfish will supply you with balancing omega 3 fatty acids and are an important part of a low carb food list. For omega 6, you can eat a few nuts or some mayonnaise. If you are not a fan of seafood, you can take small amounts of fish or krill oil supplement for omega 3s.
Eggs, avocados, butter, macadamia nuts and coconut oil contain saturated and monounsaturated fats which are tolerated by most people and are chemically stable, so they are less inflammatory. Fats and oils can be combined in dressings, causes and other additions to main meals. Over time, it will become a habit to add a source of fat to each meal.
It is recommended that you avoid hydrogenated fats such as margarine in order to minimize the trans fats intake. If you choose using vegetable oils such as canola, olive, sunflower, soybean, flaxseed and sesame oils, make sure you find “cold pressed”. Avoid heating vegetable oils. Use clean non-hydrogenated lard, beef tallow, coconut oil, ghee and olive oil for frying, since they have high smoke points.
Avocado (very high in fat, so I’m including it here)
Beef tallow, preferably from grass fed cattle
Butter: try to find organic sources
Chicken fat, organic
Duck fat, organic
Ghee (butter with milk solids removed)
Lard such as organic leaf lard (make sure it is NOT hydrogenated)
Mayonnaise (most have carbs, so count them. Duke’s brand is sugar free.)
Olive oil, organic
Organic coconut oil, coconut butter and coconut cream concentrate
Organic Red Palm oil
Peanut Butter: make sure to use unsweetened products, and limit due to Omega 6 content.
Seed and most nut oils: Sesame oil, Flaxseed oil, etc. These are higher in inflammatory Omega 6 fats, so limit amounts, and don’t heat them.
85-90% dark chocolate can be used in small amounts, or use Chocoperfection low carb chocolate.
Sources of Protein
Opt for organic or grass fed animal foods and organic eggs to minimize bacteria, antibiotic and steroid hormone intake.
Websites such as www.eatwild.com or www.localharvest.org can help you find local sources of clean, grass fed meats and poultry. These clean proteins are the best choices for a low carb food list.
Meat: beef, lamb, veal, goat and wild game. Grass fed meat is preferred, since it has a better fatty acid profile.
Pork: pork loin, Boston butt, pork chops, ham. Check the label for added sugar in hams.
Poultry: chicken, turkey, quail, Cornish hen, duck, goose, pheasant. Free range is best if it’s available.
Fish or seafood of any kind, preferably wild caught: anchovies, calamari, catfish, cod, flounder, halibut, herring, mackerel, mahi-mahi, salmon, sardines, scrod, sole, snapper, trout, and tuna.
Canned tuna and salmon are acceptable but check the labels for added sugars or fillers. (Exception: Avoid breaded and fried seafood.)
Shellfish: clams, crab, lobster, scallops, shrimp, squid, mussels, and oysters. (Exception: imitation crab meat. It contains sugar, gluten and other additives.)
Whole eggs: These can be prepared in various ways: deviled, fried, hard-boiled, omelets, poached, scrambled, and soft-boiled.
Bacon and sausage: check labels and avoid those cured with sugar or which contain fillers such as soy or wheat. Specialty health food stores carry most brands of sugar-free bacon.
Peanut butter and soy products such as tempeh, tofu and edamame are good sources of protein, but they are higher in carbohydrate, so track them carefully.
Whey protein powders, plus rice, pea, hemp or other vegetable protein powders. Be aware that whey protein is insulinogenic (meaning it causes an insulin spike) in the body, so if you having trouble losing weight or getting into ketosis, limit amounts or avoid whey.
Non-starchy vegetables are low in carbs. Make sure you buy organic vegetables or grow your own to avoid pesticide residues. Avoid the starchy vegetables such as corn, peas, potatoes, sweet potatoes, and most winter squash as they contain large amounts of carbs. Limit the intake of carrots, tomatoes, peppers and summer squashes.
Any leafy green vegetable