Sticking to a low-carb diet can be difficult, especially when it comes to breakfast. A lot of common breakfast foods are loaded with carbohydrates, including toast, cereal, and oatmeal. Here are 10 low-carb breakfast ideas to get your day off to a good start and keep your diet on track.
Low-carb diets are a proven way to lose weight. One study found that, after two years, weight loss was maintained better for low-carb diets than low-fat ones. If you are on a low-carb diet, eggs are a great way to start the day. A single egg has less than one gram of carbohydrates, plus 13 grams of protein, Vitamin D, and iron. They're also extremely versatile — fry, scramble, bake, or hard boil them for quick, simple meals.
Low-carb diets are also beneficial for lowering triglycerides and boosting HDL or good cholesterol. Bacon is a breakfast staple that is also low-carb friendly, but it is better to stick with turkey bacon rather than pork. Turkey bacon has only 6.9 grams of saturated fat per serving, while pork bacon has 12 grams — it may be delicious, but it is not the healthiest option. Toss bacon on the plate next to your eggs, or chop it up into a crustless quiche that will keep for a few meals in the fridge.
Research shows that a moderately low-carb diet is heart-healthy, as long as you get your protein and fat from healthful sources. Almonds are not only low-carb, with about six grams per ounce, but they also have 14 grams of fat and six grams of protein. Furthermore, they're a great source of vitamins E and B2. An excellent option for days when you're rushed, a handful of almonds tastes great as is or topping some yogurt.
Coffee is a morning essential, and it has zero carbs, making it perfect for a low-carb diet. This breakfast time staple has many other health benefits. too. One analysis showed that coffee drinkers have a 25 percent lower risk of developing diabetes. Bear in mind that only black coffee is no-carb. When you add milk, sugar, or flavored creamers, you also add carbohydrates. This drink is also best in moderation, and, for most people, shouldn't be the only thing you have for breakfast.
Low-carb diets have not been studied enough to discern any long-term health risks, and some experts believe that animal fats and proteins may increase the risk of heart disease. At least in moderation, though, one source for healthy fats and proteins for breakfast is cheese. For example, a half-cup of shredded cheddar has 19 grams of fat and 13 grams of protein. Melt it into eggs or serve up a cold plate option with cubed cheese, almonds, and other low-carb staples.
It is easy to indulge in high-fat foods when following a low-carb diet, but choosing foods with unsaturated fats and protein is essential. Cottage cheese is a great breakfast choice. A half-cup of cottage cheese with two percent milk fat has only 5.6 grams of carbs and 12 grams of protein. Additions can make it sweet or savory — try mixing in berries or chives and black pepper.
Low-carb diets not only help to prevent type 2 diabetes, but they can also improve the health of people who already have it. One study showed significant improvements in blood pressure, lipids, and weight in people with type 2 diabetes who followed a low-carb diet for two years. Greek yogurt can help you stick to this eating style. A standard five-ounce container has 13 grams of protein, 7.1 grams of fat, and only 5.6 carbs. Like cottage cheese, it's easy to add mix-ins for a balanced breakfast.
Eating too much red meat has consistently been shown to raise the risk of cardiovascular diseases. If you crave some sausage with your scrambled eggs, skip the pork and opt for chicken sausage instead. One large three-ounce link has about nine grams of fat, 13 grams of protein, and only four carbs. Sliced or crumbled, it makes a great protein boost to any breakfast.
Avocado is an excellent source of unsaturated fats and has many other health benefits. Unlike most fruits, it does not have a lot of sugar, and the calories are more than 70 percent healthy fat. Avocados also have more potassium than bananas and a lot of fiber. One avocado has about 21 grams of fat and only 2.8 net carbs (or carbs not from fat).
When following a low-carb diet, it's important to incorporate a variety of foods, including fruits, to make sure you get all the essential nutrients your body needs. Low-carb fruits are hard to come by, but berries are the safest choice. One cup of whole strawberries has only 11 grams of fiber. The same amount for raspberries has only 15 grams of carbs, and blueberries, 14 grams. Berries and some almonds makes an excellent light breakfast.