Healthy Habits for Low-Carb Dieting


There's more than one reason to follow a low-carb diet. Some people avoid or limit carbs to lose weight. And other people keep carbs under control to manage specific health conditions. In any case, following a low-carb diet can have certain side effects.

Lose weight or control blood sugar levels to manage diabetes. These are positive benefits of following a low-carb diet. But eating this way has a downside too. For example, avoiding or limiting carbs can also cause:

  • Flu-like symptoms
  • Leg cramps
  • Digestive problems
  • Bad breath
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Weakness
  • And in some cases, a low-carb diet may even be linked to gallstone problems, trouble breastfeeding, hair loss, high cholesterol, and problems with drinking alcohol.

Is there anything you can do to minimize the negative side effects of going low-carb? Fortunately there is.

Be patient.

The first line of defense, recognize that when you make the switch to low-carb, it's a shock to your system. But over time, your body will begin to adapt. In many cases, symptoms will resolve in a few days to a week.

Drink more water.

It's easy to get dehydrated when you're on a low-carb diet. And if you're not drinking at least 8 cups of water a day, it can impact your health in many different ways. It also helps reduce heart palpitations.

Keep sodium levels up.

It might seem counterintuitive when limiting sodium to no more than 2,300 milligrams a day is recommended. But adding salt to food, or choosing higher-sodium foods like chicken, beef, or bone broth can help support hydration when you're drinking plenty of water.

Take a magnesium supplement.

If you're still experiencing leg cramps after hydrating well and keeping up on sodium, take a magnesium supplement to reduce cramping.

Eat more fiber-rich foods.

On a low-carb diet, you're going to avoid high-carb foods like breads, pastas, and cereals, which are all high in fiber. But you still need fiber in your diet. And you should get it from vegetables and psyllium seed.

Adjust your carb intake.

Sometimes simply making small changes to the amount of carbs you eat (more or less) can help reduce side effects. Try increasing the amount of carbs you eat per day by 50 to 70 grams, and see if you feel better.

Going low-carb can be a good way to lose weight, manage diabetes, or improve your health in other ways. But it takes some getting-used-to for most people because carbs are such a big part of the typical American diet. Fortunately, we've made it easy for you to change your diet and improve your health by creating a large selection of Low-Carb Friendly meals.

When you have diabetes, paying attention to your diet is an important part of controlling your blood sugar levels. Changing your diet to manage diabetes can be an adjustment. Foods like soft drinks, white bread, and sweet treats should be avoided, because they can cause extreme fluctuations in blood sugar levels. Fortunately, there are many healthy foods you can eat. Check out these top 10 superfoods for people with diabetes

Figuring out how to incorporate all these foods into your diet and add them to your shopping list for your next trip to the grocery store can make you wonder if there's an easier way to eat healthy when you have diabetes. Fortunately, there is. At we've created a collection of healthy and tasty recipes designed specifically to meet the dietary needs of people who have diabetes. Now that you've read our low-carb dieting tips, take a look at our Diabetic-Friendly Meals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.