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Yes, you can eat veggies on a low carb diet. I know the trend is to avoid them because the carbs are so high compared to foods like cheese and eggs and almonds. And you’re right – it’s not as sexy to save up your carbs for a salad over a piece of sugar-free chocolate, but it’s still important to get your veggies in.
Why? Let’s explore a few reasons!
Vitamins! Minerals! Other phyto-chemicals that are co-factors in your regular bodily functions! Basically, you’re body needs lots of nutrients that are predominantly found in plant foods. Yes, you can take a multi-vitamin, but it won’t absorb as well as the nutrients in food, leaving you with expensive pee.
No one likes being constipated, and fiber does more than just “sweep out” waste from your intestines. Insoluble fiber is actually foodstuffs for your friendly microbiome. So, if you want your gut bacteria to be happy (also, the poo-sweeping thing) – veggies!
Fill that tummy!
Veggies are often high in water and fiber, and low in calories. This combo will help you feel fuller for longer. Win.
But what veggies can I eat that are low in carbs?
Great question! Here’s a quick list for you, which net effective carbs written in for convenience! Some veggies, like mustard greens, can be eaten fairly liberally, with no dramatic spike in carb intake!
- Mustard greens: .2g net carbs/cup
- Raw Spinach: .2g net carbs/cup
- Bok Choi: .4g net carbs/cup
- Endive: .4g net carbs/cup
- Lettuce: .4g net carbs/cup
- Broccoli florets: 1.6g net carbs/cup
- Cauliflower: 1.8g net carbs/cup
- Cucumber: 2g net carbs/cup
- Green cabbage: 2.2g net carbs/cup
- Summer Squash: 2.6g net carbs/cup
- Red cabbage: 2.8g net carbs/cup
- Button mushroom: 2.8g net carbs/cup
- Zucchini: 3g net carbs/cup
- Tomato: 4.8g net carbs/cup
- Carrot slices: 8.6g net carbs/cup