Beginners Guide to Indian Low Carb High Fat Diet for Weight Loss
One of the food methodologies for healthy living that has been gaining a lot of traction in recent times is the LCHF diet in India. Also known as the Low Carb High Fat (LCHF) diet, it focuses more on consumption of natural fats than carbohydrates.
Recently, diet researchers around the world have concluded that most shelved low fat foods in supermarkets, from breakfast cereals to ready-to-cook noodles, are actually high in simple carb content.
Consumption of excessive simple carbs allow our digestive system to process it faster and convert it into sugar; thus, every bit of simple carb that we fail to burn are stored as fat reserves in the body. In most cases around the world, fat stores increase because of sugar rather than by natural fat consumption.
This is why experts have formulated an LCHF diet chart that focuses on the consumption of high quality fats instead of simple carbs which, in turn, initiates a fat burning process called ketosis.
What is ketosis?
When the human body doesn’t have enough glucose to use as fuel, it starts burning stored body fat to use as the by-product, ketones, as a source of energy. This process is called ketosis.
People who follow LCHF diet in India try to trigger this process in their body by limiting their carb intake. It is done by increasing more saturated and unsaturated fat consumption in the body, along with a healthy dose of protein to act as building blocks.
Here’s a look at what this article aims to inform you about considering your LCHF diet.
To get a complete idea about LCHF food, read each of the topics carefully below:
Before going for an Indian LCHF diet, you would need some tools that can help you in your weight loss journey. The best tool is your willpower and discipline but in my experience below products help you measure your progress and help you understand even small changes in your body.
- Weighing Scale – “What gets measured, gets managed” ~ Peter Drucker. If you do not have a good weighing scale we highly recommend you buy one. I recommend this one at Amazon. Always measure your weight in the same/similar clothes first thing in the morning after peeing.
- Food Scale – It is very easy to eat more than your portion size. When you have to eat 100 grams of beans/chicken, you can make sure you eat EXACTLY 100 grams of it by using a good food scale. I recommend this one at Amazon.
- Measuring Tape – That waist will shrink on LCHF diet, make sure you are keeping track of the progress. Buy any decent one like this one at Amazon.
- Dumbells – If you don’t have a gym membership, it may be worthwhile to get a decent dumble according to your strength levels so that your body gets the minimum exercise it needs. I recommend this one.
- Ketone Strips – These help you understand if your body is in Ketosis or not. Any standard one will do like the one here.
Getting back to Indian LCHF….
Before starting to plan on such diet, one should be clear about what purpose it must serve. The idea is to limit the percentage of carbs in the diet as much as possible. To do this, one should concentrate on healthy saturated and unsaturated fats, proteins, and a good amount of fibre.
In India however, any Low Carb diet chart can be classified into two broad categories:
- Vegetarian Low Carb Diet
- Non-vegetarian Low Carb Diet
Planning a Vegetarian Low Carb Diet
Surveys reveal that around 28% Indians are vegetarian in nature. While that surely makes it a minority, considering India’s massive population of 1.2 billion people, this percentage constitutes around 336 million people (more than the population of USA).
To side-track planning a vegetarian LCHF diet would be nothing less than a sin. So, here’s how one could go about in dividing their macros if they are not meat, fish, and egg to trigger ketosis.
- High Fat Vegetarian Foods
There are some food items that contain a good amount of healthy fats and are very low on sugar content. Dieticians and dieters alike should try and implement these in their vegetarian LCHF diet in India. Here’s a list of such items:
- Avocados – With only 2 grams of net carbs in 100 grams, it is one of the best sources of healthy fats and fibres that one can use while planning a keto diet.
- Butter – This dairy product could be a major component of your low carb high fat diet chart. With just 0.1 gram of carb in hundred grams and 81 grams of total fat, it fits in perfectly into planning a vegetarian LCHF diet.
- Paneer – Another popular vegetarian alternative in the subcontinent, Paneer or cottage cheese offers 1.2 grams of carbs, 18.3 grams of protein, and 20.8 grams of fat. Also, it is easily available throughout the country.
There many other vegetarian options like dark chocolate, spinach, cheese, etc. Dieters must keep in mind to constitute around 80% of their diet with fats. One attempting or following an LCHF diet must aim for around 15% protein and less than 5% carbs.
Planning an Indian Low Carb Non-Veg Diet
With its majority belonging to non-vegetarian food habits and ranking third in the list of countries with obese population, Indians really need to understand more about ketosis. To plan a non-vegetarian diet that will provoke ketosis is easy; since meat and poultry eaters have their options wide open in vegetarian lists also.
However, here one can find some of the most popular non-veg options good for LCHF followers.
- Chicken breast – Popular among all kinds of health enthusiasts, chicken breasts are a perfect fit for an LCHF diet chart. With just 1 gram of carb in 85 grams, 4 grams of fat, and 25 grams of high-quality protein, they are a definite winner.
- Olive oil – 2 table spoons of olive oil have zero grams of carb, and contain 28 grams of high quality fat that help in reducing LDL cholesterol. Easily available throughput India, dieters can use it to cook their meals, making them score higher on their health quotient.
- Eggs – Whole eggs are very low on carbs; around .66 grams in a single one. They are high on protein because of the white and on fats because of the embryo. Also, eggs help in increasing bone health and offer good quality of albumen protein which is second only to milk by-product, whey.
- Fish – Rich in vitamin E and omega 3 fatty acids, fish is one of the staple diet options in most coastal states of the Indian peninsula. It is also low in carbs with only around 4 grams per serving in most freshwater fishes.
With items like these in abundance throughout the country, one can easily plan a veg or non-veg LCHF diet. However, one must always keep in mind to balance between macros and limit their carb intake to less than 30 grams for the day.
Also, in most cases, it is best to see a dietician at the gym or in a clinic. This helps in understanding the importance of other calculations like body mass index and body fat percentage so that one enjoys a customized LCHF diet for optimum results.
“The process of ketosis which happens when people opt for LCHF diet in India is very effective against blood sugar and helps to keep things in check.”
Like in case of most diets, the results of an LCHF diet in India also optimizes when one performs light to moderate exercises. However, exercise modules can often go wrong. This shall lead to excess stress hormones like cortisol that inhibit fat burning; the most important job of any LCHF diet.
So, what kind of exercises should one do while on such diet?
Here’s a sneak peek:
- Weight Training: Focusing on major muscle groups like back, chest, legs, and core with power lifting exercises like bench presses, deadlifts, rows, squats, etc. are anyone’s best bet. These exercises trigger muscle growth, which in turn lead to further fat loss.
A weight training chart during LCHF diet should look something like this:
- 10 to 15 minutes of light warm-up which might include brisk walking, spinning, and stretching muscles.
- 4 sets of bench press with progressive overload and a repetition rate of 12 or higher.
- 4 sets of deadlift with same directions.
- A set of four squats in same directions.
- 4 sets of clean and press or clean and jerk without progressive overload.
- End of with some core stabilization exercises like wall sit, planks, etc.
One should also keep in mind that during LCHF, no more than 45 to 60 minutes of exercise is required for around 3 to 4 days. High-intensity exercise can provoke cortisol production when continued for more than an hour.
It is important for LCHF diet in India followers to consult their gym trainers for an elaborate strength-based exercise routine. The above is just to give readers a rough idea of how the workout should look.
- HIIT or High-Intensity Interval Training – Another famed training method, this focuses on keeping an individual’s heart rate up for prolonged periods. Trainers guide dieters through intense bursts of exercise followed by periods of rest or light exercise. It’s a loop system and experts believe it puts the heart rate on an elevated stage.
This increases the metabolic rate, burning calories throughout the day. HIIT is specifically suited for working professionals who do not have much time for exercises. Most HIIT modules end within the half hour and 40 minutes mark and it is far more effective for fat loss than rigorous hours of cardio.
Some additional tips for Low Carb diet chart followers:
- Drink plenty of fluids throughout the day. Ketosis pressurizes the liver to burn stored fat because of insufficient amounts of glucose. Water will keep your system healthy, increase your metabolism aiding in digestion, and shoo away stress from your liver.
- Don’t overdo with your training during LCHF. You will have low levels of energy because of limited glucose access and initially blackouts might occur if pursued aggressively.
Keep of all of these in mind and consult your trainer without fail for a healthy and effective exercise module during your LCHF diet in India. Shifting to a new eating habit can be a lot of work and one must always have proper guides to direct them through the way.
Now that you have come this far into the article, here’s another interesting trivia about LCHF diet that one might find interesting.
“Low Carb High Fat diets have a positive impact on evils such as body weight, body mass index, triglycerides, and blood glucose. All of them plummet down.”
Cheap Indian Alternatives for LCHF on a Budget
Dieting is generally not very cost effective and a high fat diet chart shows no different result. People following an LCHF diet in India can often find it hard to maintain a budget because of all the different requirements.
However, there are always hacks that can help even budget dieters to meet their weight loss goals. Here are some of the alternative food options that are easily available, versatile in recipes, and nutritious at the same time. Also, affordable, cause that’s kind of the point!
- Beef – This red meat variant is cheap and available as lean and fatty meat cuts as well. High in protein and animal fats, it is one of the primary quality protein sources for poor non-veg eaters in the country. Currently most states in the nation sell buffalo beef instead of cow because of the government’s policy to limit cow slaughter.
- Bulk Poultry Purchase – Buying whole chicken and eggs in bulk is a definite money saver in the country. Also, dieters can avail poultry from country side where transportation costs are less incurred and therefore prices remain low. Eggs are a staple for most ketosis diet chart sheets in India and so are chicken legs and breast pieces. One can also opt to keep the skin as that increases fat value and also tastes delicious.
- Coconut Oil – The amount of coconut oil keto benefits for dieters is innumerable. Found and used all over the Indian subcontinent, this oil is high in medium chain triglycerides. It also helps in boosting ketones in the liver which serve as energy; thus making it easier for individuals to lose fat faster. Using it to cook meals or just sprinkling it over foods can make quite a bit of difference to users.
- Butter – Finding dairy products at best prices in India is easier than finding yourself a decent pair of pants. For a country obsessed with its milk, butter is a staple throughout North India. Everyone from farmers in Punjab to popular deities in Hindu mythology knows their butter. High in good fats, this milk product comes within your budget and aims well to make sure that your fat targets are fulfilled. Plus, it is versatile; anything from meat to salads can be wrapped in this delicious lube of choice and an LCHF diet chart will never have looked better.
- Leafy Greens – Veggies like broccoli, cauliflower, and spinach are found year round and are easy on the pocket. Making up for quite a lot of one’s fibre needs, these veggies are also rich in minerals and vitamins that keep those organs happy and working.
Hacks for further savings:
Now that you know a selection of foods for every segment required in your LCHF diet in India, here are some tips to save you a few more pennies.
- Make your own food. Not only is it always economical, but also it helps you stay clean during your diet. It is best to avoid fast food as much as possible.
- Refrigerate your veggies wrapped in thin cotton cloth. This helps them retain their freshness over longer periods of time, allowing you to buy in bulk.
- Stay away from canned meat, fish, etc. Not only do they cost more, they are also high on nitrogen content. Long term refrigerated food isn’t really good for you.
Now, it’s going to be a lot easier for LCHF diet chart followers to maintain a budget even while staying healthy.
“LCHF or Keto Diet is good for Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, Epilepsy, Autism, Depression, Migraines, and Cancer.”
A lot of misconception circles around most methods of LCHF diet in India. The reason for this is, most people think that while on ketosis, they are literally allowed to eat anything. This is very far from the truth.
In fact, like in all other diet forms, one should aim to eat clean even in their LCHF ways. This not only promotes better endurance and health in general, but also lowers levels of LDL cholesterol that become a bane for many.
Here is a list of things one should avoid or practice in moderation during their ketogenic processes.
- Alcohol – It is best to avoid alcohol because one can consume a lot of calories in far less time. Although most spirits do not have any carb content, they count as calories you can avoid and binging can affect your long term fat loss goals. Also, it takes a lot of time for the liver to process alcohol and hence, its focus shifts from ketones for a significant amount of time.
- Carbonated Beverages – Carbonated beverages are sugar solutions with fizz, like literally. One sip from those black fizzy glasses could set you back hours and even days of hard work. Also, these drinks are really unhealthy and one of the main reasons for the obesity that plagues people all over the world.
- Fast Food – Fast food is and always will be one of the unhealthiest food choices one can make, no matter what diet they are on. Most joints are filled with too much LDL cholesterol that will help you clog your arteries over time. It’s basically a slow journey towards a painful cardiac failure.
- High Carb Fruits – To say why one should avoid high carb fruits while following a LCHF diet chart is redundant. Sugar and carbs are stored as glycogen by the human body and this stops the ketogenic fat burning process. Rather go for polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fat content fruits like avocado, walnuts, pistachios, etc.
- Factory produced meat – Consuming meat that is factory produced and farmed can be detrimental; these often contain omega 6 fatty acids which are inflammatory in nature. Farmed fish have been found to contain high levels of poisonous elements like mercury.
Avoiding these food items can only lead to better development of a ketogenic body while following an LCHF diet in India. However, one need not lose heart as there are healthy alternatives for all of the above food items.
- Organic or Home Grown Meat – India is a hub for many farmers who grow meat and poultry options at home. Everything from mutton, beef, duck, and chicken can come under this category. While they might be a little hard to find or a little more expensive, they are definitely worth it.
- Sea food – A haven for polyunsaturated fats, sea fish are a great substitute for farm bred fishes. In a country with miles of coastal area surrounding it, getting quality sea fish seems pretty easy.
- Vegetables (Non-starchy) – Leafy greens like spinach, lettuce, Kale (karam saag), etc. are a great addition to anybody’s LCHF diet chart. Keeping the gut healthy with fibre, it makes it easier for individuals to ingest the high fat and protein content. Also, it piles on some serious minerals.
After getting a clear idea of what to avoid and some of its substitutes, following an LCHF diet in India will only become easier. Now, before moving on to some easy Indian LCHF recipes, take a look at your –
“Low Carb High Fat diets are extremely effective against skin problems like acne. Now, there’s one more reason to join the trend towards a healthy life.”
Just knowing what to have and what to avoid while following an LCHF diet chart isn’t enough; one must know a few recipes that are easy to make, tasty, and nutritious. To lessen your required effort, this article compiles a bunch of ketosis recipes that are easy to make and delectable for any appetite.
- Paneer Kebabs – Crispy Creamy Style
All you need to prepare this mouth-watering delicacy is 100 grams of paneer, 30 ml of coconut milk, 3 tsp of ghee, and mint chutney according to taste.
First, one needs to cut the paneer into thick slices and marinate it with mint chutney. After adding salt and pepper to the flaxseed powder for taste, take marinated paneer cubes and dip them in coconut milk and dab them with the powder. Use a non-stick grill marinated paneer in medium heat; flip over both sides to ensure even cooking. Once the slices are crispy and form a golden crust, they are all ready to serve.
This recipe has just 4 grams of carbs and over 600 calories.
- LCHF Coffee
Good for promoting fat loss, coffee is a staple in most weight loss diets. This one, however, is a bit adjusted to suit the needs of an LCHF diet chart.
All one needs is some instant coffee, stevia drops, and coconut oil.
For people maintaining the LCHF diet in India, this coffee follows the same recipe with stevia drops as the artificial sweetener and coconut oil according to taste. Generally, it is safer to shuttle between half and 1 tsp of coconut milk, above which it might taste weird.
- Grilled Chicken – LCHF Style
This chicken recipe needs legs, full fat curd (2 tbsp), olive oil (2 tbsp), some oregano for taste, and normal quantities of garlic ginger paste and vinegar (not to forget, salt to taste).
Marinate chicken legs in all the ingredients and make incisions in the meat for spices to seep in. Keep it for 4-5 hours and then cook in medium to slow heat. Add in some salad with sprinkled olive oil to get your fibres going.
With just around 5 grams of carbs, this meal is rich in fat and proteins, making it the perfect choice for LCHF diet in India.
Also, there are tonnes of other recipes that use the same veggies, fat, and protein combination, your LCHF diet chart prescribes. You can easily look for more recipes, that way you will always motivate yourself to stick to your diet and never get bored of your meal plan.
Now let’s take a quick look at some of the side effects one should expect while following an LCHF diet in India.
“First used in the 1920’s, LCHF diets started when researchers used the keto diet on cases of childhood epilepsy.”
- Side-effects of LCHF
Like changing any habit, moving from an unhealthy diet filled with carbs to an LCHF one can cause a number of side effects. However, most of these are simply a case of adapting and the body refusing to change its routine.
If a LCHF diet chart is followed properly over a period of time, the human body will adapt to a better life and derive energy from ketones while burning fat. Nevertheless, here’s what you should know before you make the plunge into ketosis.
- Hypoglycemia or inadequate blood sugar content
This is the very first stage of changing to an LCHF diet in India. Once blood sugar levels start to fall, the human body becomes shaky and can show a number of symptoms which might include blackouts, dizziness, fatigue, and light headedness.
At this point, the body doesn’t know how to react to the sugar-loss and burn energy by using its fat reserves. In most cases, these symptoms stop happening within a few weeks of and an individual’s body becomes habituated to using up fat reserves.
- Keto Flu
Another common side effect of shifting to an LCHF diet in India, the keto flu causes feverish symptoms and generally manifests itself from the hypoglycemia. It meets the same fate once the body’s adaptation is complete.
- Reduced Strength
Following an LCHF diet chart can lead to reduced strength performance at the gym. This might come as a shock to some obsessed with working out. However, once keto adaptation is over, and the body can effectively use ketones, things will resume back to normal.
Nevertheless, there is no reason for dieters to feel lost while following an LCHF diet in India. These symptoms can be easily handled with the help of few tricks which include:
- Drinking plenty of water to keep one hydrated
- Focusing on mineral rich foods and drinks
- Frequent meals for the first few months (every 2-3 hours)
- Keeping meals rich in fibre with low carb veggies
While transferring to an LCHF diet in India as one of the primary steps towards a healthy life, one should be prepared for the initial side-effects also. If these symptoms continue even after 3 weeks to a month, one should definitely consult a physician.
Now here’s –
“Moderate Protein High Fat diets are the basis of Ketosis. One should never go on a protein overdrive.”
The LCHF diet in India is for anyone willing to make fast and massive amounts of weight loss. Unlike most restrictive diets, ketosis specifically targets fat reserves for energy and with a LCHF diet chart, one faces minimum muscle loss.
Ketosis’ science allows people to lose fat a lot faster than other types of diets which are based on calorific deficit. LCHF diet in India doesn’t base itself on calories, but rather using up fats for energy. This way, muscle gain and fat loss with regular exercise becomes a lot easier.
Loads of celebrities who have gone through massive weight loss transformation have chosen ketosis over other forms of diet. Renowned names like Huma Qureshi, Tanmay Bhat, and Karan Johar swear by the efficacy of an LCHF diet chart.
Low carb high fat diets have evolved over time with the rapidly spreading trend of a fit life. Many experts feel it is definitely a simple and easy method of diet, because it doesn’t restrict fat food intake.
“However, one should always do things right when they do things new.”
It is imperative to consult a certified trainer or dietician before formulating and following an LCHF diet chart. With proper guidance, routine improvement tracking, and a clear mind, anything is possible. Also, people suffering from obesity should be more mindful of visible progress than of the weight scale. This way, they will stay focused and not feel like their efforts are going to waste.
Barring the mood swings which occur because of the sugar deprivation that a LCHF diet in India can cause, it is by far one of the most effective; when treated with patience and determination.