By both following a low carb diet and low carb recipes individuals can experience many medicinal benefits. Both help guide individuals to limiting the consumption of foods rich in carbohydrates. Instead foods with higher sources of protein and fat are eaten in their place. Larger quantities of foods with a low carb content are also eaten. Consequently, many people become healthier.
The limitation or elimination of foods with high levels of digestible carbohydrate is key. These include pastas and bread. Instead, foods with a high protein or fat content are consumed. Among these are cheese, poultry, eggs, meat, seeds, fish, nuts, shellfish and peanuts.
Other favorable foods are those low in carb content, such as lettuce, cucumbers, and tomatoes. Some diets allow the consumption of additional vegetables and fruits as well. It depends on the exact plan that is followed, and many variations exist.
A low-carbohydrate meal plan has many uses. It can be used very effectively to reduce body weight and fight obesity. Also, it improves symptoms in those with epilepsy and diabetes. Many individuals with chronic fatigue syndrome and polycystic ovarian syndrome has also benefited.
Limiting the intake of carbohydrates has been proven scientifically to be as helpful as limiting energy and fat levels. In one study of women who were either overweight or obese and premenopausal, most lost weight following this diet type. Another study instead linked obesity to a consumption of limited carbs, but it is unclear how.
A more convincing study has been completed on the effects of longevity. The source of information was gathered from one hundred thousand people over the time frame of two decades eating fewer carbs. Results indicated that the diet can be helpful, but that lifespan was most influenced by protein and fat sources. Eating foods with protein and oils from plants results in an increased lifespan. If fats and proteins are instead gathered from animal sources, lifespan decreases.
An example of a main dish recipe is pheasant sauteed with shallots and cream. Its ingredients include a pheasant, butter, cream, canola oil, flour, shallots, salt and pepper, and artificial sweetener. There are no breads or pasta in the meal. The poultry provides protein and the oils, butter, and cream provide fat. Unfortunately most proteins and fats are derived from animals, with the exception of the canola oil. Therefore the recipe is less healthy than others.
A more healthy dish is the chicken roulade. This entails chicken breasts stuffed with mushrooms, chicken and brandy. It is an improvement because it uses chicken, spinach and mushrooms for its proteins. This offers multiple sources of vegetable based nutrients. Furthermore, olive oil is used for the cooking of shallots and garlic, giving oils with a plant origin as well.
A diet of this kind can help with many ailments. It can help those with weight problems, insulin irregularities and seizures. It can help give individuals energy and improve health in those with polycystic ovarian syndrome. However, its impact on lifespan is dictated by where individuals get their sources of fat and protein: animals or plants. The first is far inferior to the latter in terms of longevity. Following recipes that adhere to this diet using mostly animal sources are less healthy than alternatives using plant derivatives instead.