Low Carb Vegetables

In moderation, carbohydrates play a key role in maintaining a balanced diet, since they provide your body with energy. If you’re going to be conscious about your carb intake each day in order to lose weight it’s important to know which fruits and vegetables are low in carbohydrates. We also include carb contents of common vegetables for your reference.

Low Carb Vegetables

1. General rule to tell carb content in vegetables

Vegetables are divided into 4 groups depending on what part of the plant they have come from. Reference the chart below to understand those 4 groups.

Leaves

Leafy vegetables have the least amount of carbohydrates in them. They also contain so much fiber that there is little impact on blood sugar levels. Lettuce, herbs, Swiss chard and spinach fall under this category and are rich in vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients.

Stems and Flowers

These also have a low carb count, but a bit higher than what is found in leaves. Stem and flower vegetables include broccoli, cauliflower, mushrooms and asparagus.

Fruits

The “fruit” of a plant is the part that contains seeds. Fruits possess a moderate level of complex carbohydrates. Squashes, peppers, eggplant, green beans, okra and tomatoes fall into this category. Avocados are also considered a “fruit” in this case, but they contain considerably less carbohydrates than the other vegetables listed here.

Roots

Roots have the highest level of carbs out of these four groups. Parsnips, sweet potatoes, yams and white potatoes all fall into this category and contain high amounts of carbohydrates and starches. Celery root, jicama, carrots and radishes are a part of the “root” category as well, but they contain fewer amounts of carbohydrates than the others listed here.

2. Recommended low carb vegetables

Vegetables

Description

Spinach

This leafy green is loaded with beta carotene, foliates, vitamin K and iron. It works great for a diabetic diet. For the best nutrition buy it fresh or frozen and skip the canned products. Spinach is great as a salad base or in omelets.

Tomato

Tomatoes are low-carb and low-calorie — just 32 calories per cup. Vitamin A, vitamin C, potassium and fiber are packed into tomatoes. Tomatoes also have lycopene which is a powerful antioxidant believed to help protect against prostate cancer and heart disease. Eat tomatoes raw or cooked with meats and sauces.

Broccoli

Broccoli is low carb and loaded with vitamins A, C and D as well as calcium fiber and iron. Look for broccoli that has a dark green color to it. Broccoli doesn’t keep well, so eat it soon after you have bought it.

Cucumber

A one cup portion of cucumber has less than 5 grams of carbohydrates. The vitamin K, potassium and vitamin C make cucumbers a healthy snack or salad option. Enjoy on sandwiches or by themselves as snacks.

Cabbage

This low-carb veggie is rich in antioxidants, vitamin K and C, fiber, manganese, vitamin B6. When picking out a head of cabbage, choose one that is firm and has shiny leaves. Refrigerate these to keep them fresh.

Brussels sprouts

In addition to being very low in carbohydrates, brussel sprouts are high in vitamins A and C, folic acid and fiber. It is even believed that the nutrients found in brussel sprouts can help ward off certain cancers.

Cauliflower

While not on the most popular veggie lists, cauliflower should not be overlooked as it is full of vitamin C. A single serving is over half your daily requirement for vitamin C. These can be enjoyed raw or cooked. Steaming and roasting are the best cooking methods

Asparagus

With only 27 calories and just 5 grams of carbohydrates per cup, asparagus is a great low-carb choice. These stalks are filled with vitamins A and K. Look for bunches with bright green stalks and compact heads. Break the whitish ends off before preparing and eating asparagus.

3. More low carb vegetables

The following is a list of vegetables not mentioned in the previous two tables:

  • Sprouts
  • Greens: kale, mustard greens, collard greens
  • Herbs: parsley, cilantro, basil, rosemary, thyme, sage
  • Bok Choy
  • Bamboo shoots
  • Celery
  • Leeks
  • Sea vegetables
  • Wax Bean
  • Fennel
  • Zucchini
  • Spaghetti squash
  • Green onions
  • Snow peas
  • Tomatillos
  • Artichokes
  • Pumpkin
  • Rutabaga
  • Radishes
  • Peppers

High Carb Vegetables

You should avoid those starchy vegetables if you are on a weight-loss regime.

  • Beets
  • Peas
  • Some winter squashes
  • Parsnips
  • Potatoes
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Corn
  • Plantains
  • Water chestnuts
  • corn

Carbohydrate Chart for Common Vegetables

Vegetables (100g/ 3.5 oz)

Calories

Carbohydrates (g)

Alfalfa sprouts, raw

24

0.4

Artichoke, boiled

41

10.6

Asparagus, boiled

22

4

Bean Sprouts, raw

31

4

Broccoli, raw

33

1.8

Brussel Sprouts, boiled

35

3.1

Carrots, raw and young

30

6

Cauliflower, boiled

28

2.3

Celery, raw

7

0.9

Corn Kernels, raw

93

17

Corn-on-cob, boiled, plain

66

11.6

Cucumber, raw , unpeeled

10

1.5

Eggplant, raw

15

2.2

Garlic, fresh & raw

98

16

Kale, raw & curly

35

1.4

Lettuce, romaine & raw

16

1.7

Mushrooms, raw

22

3.4

Potatoes, boiled

75

18

Okra, raw

31

3

Onions, raw

64

7.9

Peas, fresh & raw

83

11.3

Red radish, raw

12

2

Spinach, raw

25

1.6

Squash, butternut, baked

32

7.4

Sweet potato, baked

115

28

Tomatoes, cherry & raw

18

3

Tomatoes, raw

17

3

Watercress, raw

22

0.4

Yam, baked

153

37.5

Zucchini, raw

18

1.8

 
 
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