A no carbs diet


I went to my doctors for advice on losing weight and she told me it would be better if I started a no carbs diet but I am really struggling as I just end up eating a banana for breakfast, tinned soup or a salad for lunch and by the time it gets near dinner time, I am so so hungry, I end up eating carbs such as pasta with meat and vegetables instead of just skinned chicken or grilled fish with vegetables as planned.

Does anyone have any meal ideas including breakfast that does not contain carbs? I have IBS as well

Any advice appreciated

14 Replies

  • Hi,

    Thank you so much, this really helps a lot. I also have asthma so I will check with the nurse when I have my asthma review next week as well :)

  • I've been advised by my doctor to cut wheat and cheese, so I decided to go wheat and dairy free. I think going wheat free is especially advised for people with ibs and is more sustainable than cutting out all carbs, so maybe that would be a better route for you too? It would be good to do some research about which carbs are more slow releasing and maybe focus on having those, and cutting out the more refined carbs like pasta, bread etc. For example, add barley and lentils into your soup, have porridge instead of wheat-based cereal for breakfast, and brown rice/sweet potatoes with your dinner. This would be much more sustainable. I also suggest you go back to your doctor, as they have given you advice that was too difficult to follow. It would be good to clarify why they said to cut all carbs, and get professional advice as to how you can do this in a healthy sustainable way (rather than feeling deprived as you have been). Good luck :)

  • Hi,

    Thank you. I might ask to be referred to a dietitian but wheat and diary free sounds amazing especially considering I have IBS and asthma as well. This is a great alternative :)

  • I have a general IBS diagnosis with possible other complications, still seeing a consultant to investigate etc. In the past I've found yogurt (containing probiotics etc) very helpful, so I'm not sure yet about staying dairy free long term. But my eczema has disappeared and hasn't come back since I gave up dairy, so I'm tempted to, or at least to keep future dairy consumption to a minimum. I also have mild asthma and hoped to feel a difference there, but the dietary changes seem to have made no difference to that. The thing that did make a difference was couch to 5k, but that's another subject altogether!

    I definitely recommend trying giving up wheat at least for a short period. In the past I was recommended to do a month without wheat and then go back to normal, and that really helped too. I think you should definitely see a dietician before doing anything drastic though, or at least book in appointments with your gp as you go along. Also, has anyone recommended fennel tea? It's not that great taste-wise, but it really helps my stomach, helps it relax, feel less bloated etc. Good to have after dinner. Might be worth a try to see if it helps you in the same way too. Good luck navigating this, as others have said here too, pretty tricky area of nutrition :)

  • Did she not give any more advice than that? Restricting carbohydrate, especially refined sugar is one thing but a "No" carb diet is another, very hard to got to practically zero carbs if you are coming from eating a standard western type diet.

    Another important thing is that if you are going restrict your Carbohydrate intake then you need to replace it with an alternative energy source, fat, so you should be leaving the skin on the chicken.

  • Hi,

    All I said to her is what am I supposed to eat then and she just said protein, she did not mention fat at all.

    I have to be careful though as I have IBS and asthma and I don't want to trigger off my asthma either so I will check with the nurse when I go for my asthma review next week.

    Thank you

  • You don't really want an excess of protein in your diet if you are trying to lose weight, in very simple terms it can end up as sugar then stored as fat. It's there for insulinogenic in various degrees.

    Avoiding wheat (amongst other things) can really help IBD and IBS, both my wife and stepdaughter have Ulcerative Colitis and my stepdaughter has seen her symptoms improve 10 fold since going wheat free. I don't eat it myself, in fact in the last 2 years I have only knowingly eaten it twice (succumbed to Naan bread at the local Indian on both occasions) and have seen a range of benefits, most noticeably the lack of wind (much to my wife's approval), which I always assumed was a normal man/boy thing.

    Good luck with the dietician, hopefully they will provide you with the help and advice you need.

  • I'd have to agree with the others and say that NO carb diet seems incredibly hard to maintain - no wonder you are busting out and eating pasta by the end of the day.

    Lots of great advice here but I have to say your Dr is negligent for not saying more than just cut out carbs without offering any other support or advice.

    Did she really say NO carbs? That seems crazy.

  • Yes she really did say no carbs at all and that I don't need them and I said what am I supposed to eat then and she said protein but this is not enough on its own to give me the energy I need.

    I was left feeling very confused, maybe it was for advice on losing weight but I cannot cut out all carbs, she even said no porridge, cereal or toast for breakfast which is like my favourite thing even though it plays havoc with my IBS. She said to have a yogurt or some eggs with salad for breakfast. Groan. I need something filling for breakfast and cannot eat salad for breakfast.

    Thanks :)

  • Thats really bad form on her part. At the very least she should have given you a basic menu plan or pointed you in the direction of a website that could help.

    I'll send you an email.


  • Hi Naturegirl

    Not helpful advice from you doctor! It's a bit more realistic to suggest that you cut out all processed or refined carbohydrates, which would mean cutting out foods made from flour and sugar. A lot of vegetables contain carbohydrate, is she really suggesting you cut those out??

    Cutting out wheat and dairy is a good idea if you have any digestive problems. I can't eat gluten, so I've had to cut out wheat, rye and barley, this may be a step to far for most people! Hugh FW has a good wheat and dairy free cookery book out which is very useful.

    There are various sites to help eating a sustainable low-carb diet, but no-carb is difficult and isn't something that most people could achieve overnight. If you are making any major changes it's a good idea to do it gradually.

    This is one useful site for information.


  • The Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall book was very useful actually, I looked at it after your recommendation in a previous thread. It's called 'Light & Easy' and they had it in my library, so it's prob easy for others to get hold of via the library too. It has a very informative introduction. I've also gone back to an old 1980s vegetarian cookbook I have by Sarah Brown. Some of these early vegetarian recipes were all about cutting out complex carbohydrates and unnecessary dairy too, and I'm finding Sarah Brown particularly useful, she explains what all the different alternative grains are, where they come from etc, a real education!

  • Hi Naturegirl22,

    The NHS guidelines regarding treatment of IBS are helpful reading as they talk about an IBS-friendly diet - here's a link to the information which you may find helpful.

    I agree with others who have recommended that you seek further advice from a healthcare professional, as your GP's advice sounds extremely strange to me.


    All the best,

    Lowcal :-)

  • EVERYONE NEEDS TO EAT SOME CARBS.! If you don't eat some carbs., your brain won't function correctly and you will end up very confused. Or worse-- severe low blood sugar. You could cut down on the carbs., but don't get rid of them completely.

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