Living the LCHF lifestyle is not as hard as you might think. Once you’re organised, it’s a matter of making swaps from your existing foods to those that are LCHF-friendly to make it work. Today I bring you my top 7 essential LCHF swaps that are vegetable-based.Screen Shot 2016-08-02 at 6.26.27 PM

  1. Swap out NOODLES for ZOODLES: The courgette – or zucchini – is a versatile vegetable. Invest in a spiraliser (or julienne peeler) to make true-spaghetti like noodles that are nutrient-rich and delicious. I like to use them not only as a pasta substitute but also as a little
    mound on my plate, on which I rest my protein (fish, chicken or meat).
  2. Swap out RICE for “CAULI-RICE”: Now this is a classic. If you haven’t already tried it, it’s a must. Place the cauliflower in a blender, raw, and blitz until fine. Then put it in a pan with cooking fat (butter / coconut oil / olive oil), salt and pepper and cook until the consistency suits. I like mine slightly crunchy and I usually use it not only as my “rice” substitute for curry and rice, but also as my spaghetti substitute for my spag bol – it’s just about finding out what works for you and your family.
  3. Swap out COUSCOUS for “CAULI-COUSCOUS”: This is essentially the same as the above, but just add turmeric when you cook it so it goes yellow (make sure to add black pepper to enhance its bioavailability as a spice-based anti-inflammatory agent). This is a great substitute for carb-heavy couscous. I enjoy it with Moroccan spice flavours in a traditional Moroccan-couscous dish (with a difference) and also as a “cauli”-couscous salad (great for leftovers).Screen Shot 2016-08-02 at 6.27.02 PM
  4. Swap out BURGER BUNS for PORTOBELLO MUSHROOMS: Homemade burgers have never been healthier, and the kids will love them. To make my mushrooms uber-tasty, I first fry up some butter and garlic, brush the mix onto the mushrooms (top and bottom), and then grill them to keep them soft and moist. There is nothing wrong with having them a little firmer to hold the inners of the burger either.
  5. Swap out SPAGHETTI for SPAGHETTI SQUASH: Another pasta alternative. Spaghetti squash is just delicious and is now even promoted in the supermarket as a pasta alternative (the message is getting through, people!). It’s so easy to cook and can feed a lot of hungry mouths as it goes far. Just pop it in the oven with some butter and spices, and after 45 minutes, it’s all yours to string into spaghetti-like strips.
  6. Swap out CRACKERS for CRUNCHY CUCUMBERS: I find most people just crave the crunch from crackers. What better way to get that crunch than from nutrient-rich cucumber (English / Telegraph). Top with any combination of cheese, basil pesto, baby tomatoes, smoked salmon, mashed avocado or pate and enjoy the decadence.
  7. Swap out TOAST for TOASTED KUMARA (SWEET POTATO): That’s right, you are readingScreen Shot 2016-08-02 at 6.28.10 PM correctly, toasted kumara. While this might not be a carb-lowering tip, it’s still healthier than bread. Try sweet potato (or kumara) toast. Just pop a piece (bread-width) in the toaster – you might need to toast a few times to get it to the consistency you like. Serve with any combination of toppings as above.

So there you have it, some ideas to make sure your LCHF lifestyle is ticking over nicely. Enjoy!

Join the discussion 9 Comments

  • marie says:

    I too have problems with many foods- and the regular use of the recommendations will provoke problems for some.
    people ned to know how to sort out their problems, a simple elimination system . If a rotation diet is followed for 4 days on the second time round one has chance of finding one’s enemies, if pulse or blood pressure looked at as well as noting reactions, which may be delayed.

    Please use a darker font- this is hard to read.
    Caryn, you have the chance to revolutionise NZ’s general health if you will teach us how to systematically prevent all sorts of complaints. Just following a diet isnt enough. there are dozens to work for quite a few-, but we need to know to be nice to our genes. Low carb and good fats -yes but…..

    • What The Fat? says:

      Hi there, you raise a great point and I agree that many people need to go beyond LCHF (which is really just about eating whole food) if they have problems with specific foods (some of which they might know of and some of which they might not know of). But to manage this, we’re getting into clinical dietetics, and while elimination is the way to go, people need to consult with a trained dietitian / nutrition to be able to do this properly. Personalised nutrition and health is definitely the way of the future, and this is what my group do in my clinic, one-to-one. You simply can’t put this kind of information into a book or blog, what we’re (i.e. the WTF? team) is trying to do is to spread the whole food message first and foremost.

  • Patricia says:

    Yum cant wait to try all these beautiful alternatives thanks so much, I love WTF 🙂

  • Barbara Patel says:

    Good suggestions thanks will try

  • Jo massey says:

    Nadia Lim does an awesome cauliflower couscous with lamb Kofta balls. Delicious!

  • Niki says:

    What is one to do when suffering from food intolerances that include all the vegetables you’ve mentioned? I get awful reactions due to FODMAPS, salycilates, amines, etc to lots of nuts (especially almonds), fruit and veg and particularly all these ‘replacement’ veggies. Low carb is good because it cuts out the grains and sugars I react to but it sure limits my food choices a lot. I’ve been relying on white and bland starches like potato and gluten free flour products to sooth my painful insides for years. Now I’ve got to cut out even more food without having any substitutes. It’s not very sustainable.

    • What The Fat? says:

      Hi there – I have had clients with these same issues you mention and with such limitations it is a matter of sitting down and making a list of the foods that you can eat, the foods that are definitely a problem, and the foods that might be causing a problem but you’re not totally convinced. Then build a plan around these limitations to make it sustainable. The foods that you can eat might very well cover the nutrients needed to cover the range, particularly foods higher in protein like liver and eggs, which if you can eat, will provide you with many nutrients found in green veges (including folate and carotenoids), plus it provides no carbs. It might be that when you eliminate the problem compounds, after a while you might be able to reintroduce foods, gradually, and be able to tolerate them. Also in your case, perhaps you need to be a little less strict about your carb limits, depending on what your goal is, of course, as your situation provides those extra challenges. Hope this helps

      – Caryn

      • Niki says:

        Thanks Caryn, that is helpful. I need to remember that I don’t have to force myself to eat vegetables that I react to since other foods are high nutrient. Thankfully liver and eggs are safe for me to eat and I love the taste of them as well. Should I aim for low GI rather than low carb? I do need to lose about 55 kg as I am an obese sugar addict. Sometimes I wonder if my sugar addiction has contributed to the food intolerance that I’ve had most of my life.

        • Katie says:

          I don’t know much about it, but my friend’s daughter is medicated for salicylate allergy which seems to mean she can now eat those foods without issue…might be worth investigating

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