Low carb meal plan and recipes

Thinking of going on a low carb diet? Check out our WeightWatchers® guide to diets, recipes and ingredients to make this change work for you.
Published 11 January, 2018

While no foods are off the menu with WW, and we encourage all our members to eat a healthy, balanced diet, some people might choose to follow a low-carb meal plan in order to lose weight. Read on to find out more about low-carb meal plans and how to reduce the amount of carbs you eat.

What is a low-carb diet plan?

People who follow a low-carb diet choose to restrict carbohydrates and focus on eating meals high in protein, fat, fruit and vegetables. There are many types of low-carb diet plans, some of which are stricter than others. It might take a bit of trial and error to find the one that works for you - just remember, restricting whole food groups entirely isn’t recommended.

Get more great weight loss tips!

Low-carb diet: What to eat

Low-carb diet plans tend to include lots of the following foods, which are high in protein or fat:

  • Lean meat
  • Fish and seafood
  • Eggs
  • Cheese
  • Yoghurt
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Butter and cooking oil
  • Herbs and spices
  • Condiments
  • Fresh or frozen vegetables
  • Fresh or frozen fruit

Low-carb diet: What to avoid

If you’re following a low-carb meal plan, you should avoid eating the following foods:

  • Bread, including bagels, pitta and tortillas
  • Grains, including rice, wheat and oats
  • Pasta
  • Cereal
  • Beans, lentils and chickpeas
  • Starchy vegetables like potato and sweet potato
  • Fruits with high carb counts, like banana and mango
  • Dried fruits
  • Fruit juice
  • Alcohol

Low-carb meal plan: Sample menu

Wondering what a typical day on a low-carb diet might look like? Check out this 3-day sample meal plan, and get inspiration from some of our favourite low-carb recipes! Please note, these ideas are just suggestions - use your personalised Points budget to tailor your meal plan to you!

Day one

Breakfast: Omelette with spinach, goats’ cheese and cherry tomatoes

Lunch: chicken and vegetable soup

Dinner: spaghetti bolognese with courgetti

Day two

Breakfast: Greek yoghurt with honey and berries

Lunch: Tuna nicoise salad

Dinner: salmon and vegetable stir fry

Day three

Breakfast: Protein pancakes with banana

Lunch: Cajan shrimp taco bowl

Dinner: chicken curry with cauliflower rice

Low-carb diet for weight loss

Low-carb diets have been linked to increased weight loss, however, it’s important to consider why this is. In order to lose fat, you have to be in a calorie deficit - essentially, you need to consume less calories than you burn off over the course of time. The reason low-carb diets are successful is because some people find it an easy way of reducing calories.

What is the Keto diet?

Keto is short for what is more formally known as the ketogenic diet - essentially, an ultra low carb diet. The basics of the ketogenic diet are high fat, moderate protein and very few carbohydrates. The typical ratio is 70-80 per cent fat, about 10-20 per cent protein and about 5-10 per cent carbohydrates.

By drastically reducing carbohydrate intake and replacing it with fat, your body is put into a metabolic state called ketosis. When this happens, your body becomes incredibly efficient at burning fat for energy.

Find out more about the keto diet

Combine low-carb and WW

The WW programme gives you the flexibility to eat in a way that suits you. Whichever plan you’re on, it’s easy to incorporate low-carb meals and snacks that are healthy, filling and delicious!