LCHF is a very low-carb diet but also high in fats, It has many potential benefits for weight loss, health and performance, but also some potential initial side effects.
A LCHF (low carb, high fat) is similar to other strict low-carb diets, like the Atkins diet or Ketogenic diet (Keto) These diets often end up being ketogenic more or less by accident. The biggest difference between strict LCHF and keto is that protein levels are restricted more in the keto diet.
The basis is eating low carb,high fat foods each meal until you are satisfied, even the use for calorie counting and other methods of tracking food intake are not required and no more need to buy low fat products! There is basically 2 groups of foods for the diet, those with low carb amounts per 100grs and those with high amounts. For the sake of my experiment in this i’m avoiding any food that has more than 5grs of carbs per 100grs, roughly 5%carbs. A rough guide is to eat meat, fish, eggs, vegetables growing above ground and natural fats (like butter).
Good items for this and what will be my staples during in this month of testing are:
- Fatty cuts of meat are preferred to ensure you are consuming adequate dietary fat.
- Poultry such as Chicken, Turkey, Duck, and so on, Beef, Lamb, Pork, Oily Fish such as Salmon, Mackerel, Whole eggs, Healthy oils such as Coconut, Olive, Avocado, Macadamia, Real Butter, Fatty Cheese (beware of potential lactose or milk sugar content), Bacon.
- Cruciferous Vegetables such as Broccoli, Cauliflower, Cabbage, and Brussels Sprouts, Leafy Greens such as Spinach, Arugula, Chard, Lambs Lettuce, and Mustard Cress. Asparagus, Eggplant, Zucchini, Cucumber, Lemons and Limes.
Then avoid Sugar and starchy foods (like bread, pasta, rice, beans and potatoes, candy, anyform form of processed sugars). Stick to this and you can’t go wrong!
Starting stats and targets
So before I started this diet I took three measurements of my body. These where weight, size of my belly ,waist and body fat.
- Weight: 98.7kg
- Body fat: 22%
- Waist: 87 cm
- Belly: 96.5 cm
Not all bad stats to start with and the fact I play rugby and lift heavy weights the weight wasn’t much of an issue, it is more the body fat, waist and belly measurements. For this experiment I aim to reduce all of these with a target of
- Weight: 90kg
- Body fat: 16%
- Waist: 82 cm
- Belly: 86 cm
Alongside the diet I have set myself a simple but reliable training plan, A full body push and pull weights training along with Spin.
- Monday: 7 am Spin, 12pm weight training
- Wednesday: 7am Spin, 12pm weight training
- Friday: 7am Spin, 12pm weight training
The spin is for around 45 minutes each day where I aim to burn around 450-500kcl. The weight training is a very simple plan, it consists of barbell squats, deadlifts, low row, bench press, shoulder press, bicep curl, tricep pulldown for 4 x 10 at about 60-80% of my max 1rm (rep max). These are all movements that I use each day and help strengthen the whole body, help build muscle and burn fat at the same time.
2 weeks into the project I have found that I have had respectable results but nothing out of this world.
- Weight: 94.8kg
- Body fat: 20%
- Waist: 85 cm
- Belly: 94 cm
So as you can see the greatest loss here is body weight at 4kg. Some of this will be water loss (one reason weight wasn’t a big issue) and some will be from fat loss. There is a 2% loss in body fat which is good progress and shows i’m not losing just water and any muscle mass. A loss of 2 cm on both the belly and waist shows signs that i am also losing the fat in the right places that i wanted to.
Although I have had respectable results, there has been some issues with energy during these 2 weeks. Basically I have had low levels of energy 90% of the time and resulted to drinking coffee to help get me through the days. This is a known side effect and it will apparently change over the next week or 2 and my energy levels should be fine again (let’s hope so as I have rugby matches to play).
Food so far
I haven’t had any issues so far on what to eat, I start most with a coffee/tea, then after spin i’ll have a protein shake. For lunch i’ve been eating meats and cheese then dinners we have mixed it up with fish, meats, soups, salads, and veg. Some of my favorite meals so far.
- Moroccan style kofte kebabs with cumin seed cabbage.
- Mackerel (self caught in the fjords of Stavanger) with mushroom cream sauce, broccoli and asparagus.
- Salmon with the Artisan wok mix from remma 100.
- Homemade African style beef curry.
- Slow cooker lemon and garlic chicken with salad.
At the end of this diet I will be post all my favorite recipes for you to have try.
Please check out the next blog in 2 weeks time, Cheers Glynn