In most urban parts of Nigeria, people complain that their diet mostly consists of carbohydrates: the usual rice, pasta, noodles, garri, demo, and other starchy foods. Carbohydrates are good as they give the body energy, which is necessary for work. But too much of it can be a problem, including increased weight gain and even diabetes. Ideally, you need to balance things up by eating other classes of food. Therefore, there is a need to add other kinds of foods to your diet. However, most people prefer eating foods that are low in carbohydrates or non-carbohydrates.
Eating non-carbohydrate foods can have amazing health benefits. For example, they have been shown to significantly reduce weight gain.
That is one major reason why most people are choosing foods that are low in carbs or do not contain carbs at all. In today’s post, we will be looking at examples of low-carb or non-carb foods. Here are seven non-carbohydrate foods in Nigeria.
Eggs are rich in protein and a range of other nutrients but very low in carbs. They can also be eaten in several ways, making them perfect for those who do not like eating one thing the same way. You can boil it, fry it, or add it to whatever you are cooking, like stews. Eggs, especially the yolks, are particularly good for kids as they contain essential nutrients that can aid their growth and development.
There are dozens of recipes you can find online involving eggs for you to try at home.
Fish and other animals that reside in water can be a great inclusion to your diet. Fish are very nutritious and a great source of animal protein. They are also rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, which is something you need a lot of in your body. Examples of seafoods that are low carb include mackerel, sardines, salmon, croaker, tilapia, stockfish, catfish, and so on. Besides fish, eating other kinds of seafood is also recommended, like shrimps, prawns, crawfish, lobsters, and so on.
You can add fish into your diet anyhow you like, as long as it suits your taste.
Meat like pork, beef, turkey, and chicken are very rich in protein plus other nutrients. Not only are they nutritious, but they can be very delicious when prepared well, and there are no limits to how they can be prepared. Increasing your meat intake would provide your body with other kinds of nutrients besides carbohydrates.
Vegetables are loaded with nutrients and would form a great part of your diet. Some vegetables can be cooked and eaten with other foods, while some can be eaten alone. Some common vegetables include cabbage, cucumber, lettuce, cauliflower, green beans, tomatoes, onions, okra, and so on. Some of these vegetables contain carbohydrates but in very small amounts that would not add significantly to your carbohydrate intake. Furthermore, leafy vegetables such bitter leaves, scent leaf, water leaf, fluted pumpkin leaves, and spinach are also low in carbohydrates.
Although beans contain carbohydrates, it is also very rich in protein, which makes them a very balanced meal. Beans can be boiled and eaten like that, or they can be used to make foods like akara or moi-moi. Cow pea or black-eyed beans is also very healthy and has very few carbs.
You can also try eating more fruits whenever you are hungry, rather than bread or any other high-carb food. Fruits are very nutritious and contain very few calories. Examples of fruits include orange, banana, watermelon, garden eggs, Nigerian pear (ube), avocado, and so on.
You can decide to blend the fruits and enjoy them as a smoothie instead of eating them. Doing it this way is more satisfying and allows you to enjoy two to three fruits at once.
7. Nuts and seeds
There are a lot of nuts and seeds which are low in carbohydrates in Nigeria. Most nuts and seeds are usually low in carbs but high in fat, fiber, protein, and other micronutrients. Examples of low carb nuts and seeds in Nigeria include almonds, groundnuts, walnuts, cashew nuts, sunflower seeds, egusi seeds, and flaxseeds.
8. Dairy foods
A number of dairy foods in Nigeria are low carb. Full-fat dairy products are particularly excellent low-carb foods. Some low carb dairy foods in Nigeria are fura da nono, Greek yogurt, parfait, cheese, wara, and custard. Nevertheless, always read the label and avoid any dairy product with added sugar.