Low carb is now a way of life; it has helped us to lose weight and keep that weight off.
We are both less tired, have more energy, we can exercise harder and feel we have better immune systems
– Katie and Giancarlo Caldesi
WHAT IS A LOW-CARB DIET?
So, what do we mean by low carb? While cutting out sugar and starchy carbs, a low-carb diet focuses on healthy protein and fats like meat, fish, eggs, dairy and nuts alongside a rainbow of vegetables and berries.
A low-carb diet contains less than 130g carbs per day (the average western diet contains around 250g carbs a day). You can vary the amount of carbs you consume according to our CarbScale (see page 24) and your personal health goals. But as Jenny Phillips explains
on pages 14–19, going low carb isn’t as simple as just cutting out the sugar you put in your tea and coffee. Sugar is everywhere! Basically, there are three sources:
❋ Naturally sugary foods like honey, raisins or fruit juice.
❋ Foods with added sugars like biscuits, cakes and jam.
❋ Starchy carbohydrate foods that digest down into sugar; bread, rice, breakfast cereals or potatoes are potent sources of sugar.
WHY WE SHOULD ALL BE LOW CARB -Dr David Unwin FRCGP
So cutting junk food is a good idea for everyone but what about going low carb? In my practice we have seen weight loss, improvements in blood pressure and liver function, greater mental clarity and, of course, drug-free remission of type 2 diabetes. Perhaps you don’t currently have any of these problems, many young people don’t. But could a poor diet lead to these conditions in the future? Why not sort your diet before you are ill? Certainly, I wish I had understood the benefits of lifestyle medicine over lifelong medication much earlier in my medical career.
See yourself as an experiment, as Jen says (see pages 34–35), notice what works for you and do more of it. This book is part of your journey towards delicious food that helps reduce hunger and optimize your metabolism. We want to share our low-carb enthusiasm and what we have learned to help you enjoy healthy, nutritionally dense, tasty food every day to lose weight and maintain a healthy weight for life. If you get that right, you will lose weight and enjoy yourself into the bargain, as I and so many of my patients have done.
CINNAMON & CREAM CHEESE MUFFINS
When I worked as an au pair in Long Island, New York, cinnamon rolls were my downfall. I came back two stone heavier and haven’t touched one since. However, I can now enjoy them once more with this low-carb version. I think these are much nicer than their sickly-sweet forebears, which can weigh in at 125g (4½oz) carbs and 880kcal each compared to mine at under 10g (¼oz) and 322kcal! These are great to freeze; defrost in the microwave and top with the cream cheese frosting before serving.
150g (5½oz) ground almonds
1 (125g/4½oz) apple, coarsely grated
1½ teaspoons baking powder
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
For the cinnamon butter
45g (1½oz) butter, plus extra for greasing (optional)
3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon honey or 2 tablespoons erythritol
For the cream cheese frosting
90g (3¼oz) cream cheese
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Per muffin with honey
9.1g net carbs, 3.2g fibre, 8.8g protein, 27g fat, 322kcal
Per muffin with erythritol
7g net carbs, 3.2g fibre, 8.8g protein, 27g fat, 314kcal
Preheat the oven to 220°C/200°C fan/425°F/gas mark 7. Grease 6 muffin moulds or use a silicone muffin mould or line a muffin tin with paper cases.
Mix the eggs, ground almonds, grated apple, baking powder and vanilla together thoroughly in a bowl. Use a spatula to transfer the mixture to the muffin moulds and smooth down the tops.
Bake the muffins for 20 minutes or until firm to the touch.
Meanwhile, make the cinnamon butter by mixing all the ingredients together and set aside. Do the same with the frosting.
Once cooked, use a thick skewer to make 3 holes in the top of each muffin. I circle the skewer around a little to enlarge the holes. Pour the warm cinnamon butter over the tops of the muffins so that each will be marbled with it. Set aside to cool.
Use a dinner knife or small spatula to spread the frosting over the muffins and serve straight away or keep the muffins in a container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
THESE EXTRACTS ARE FROM THE LOW CARB WEIGHT LOSS COOKBOOK BY KATIE AND GIANCARLO CALDESI