Low Carb Diets and Plantain

A low-carbohydrate diet can help you lose weight and control your blood sugar levels, but it can dramatically reduce your food choices. Certain plans and phases may forbid starchy foods, such as plantains, or allow only small portions of these high-carbohydrate choices. Plantains, however, provide essential nutrients and can be part of a balanced diet.

Count Your Carbohydrates

Each 1/2 cup of cooked mashed plantains contains 31 grams of total carbohydrates, which can be a substantial amount on a meal plan that severely limits carbohydrate consumption. The initial, most restrictive, stage of a low-carbohydrate diet might restrict you to as few as 20 grams of carbohydrates per day. The serving of plantains also contains 14 grams of sugar.

Low-Carb Diet and Plantains

Fit in Plantains if You Can

Some low-carbohydrate plans might limit carbohydrate consumption to 20 percent to 40 percent of total calories. Because each gram of carbohydrates provides 4 calories, this range is equivalent to 100 to 200 grams of carbohydrates per day on a 2,000-calorie diet. You can fit in small amounts of plantains on these kinds of diet plans. Prepare your plantains with foods that are free from or low in carbohydrates. For example, cook chicken breast with zucchini and a few slices of plantain.

Make Fiber-Dense Choices

A low-carbohydrate diet can be low in fiber because it restricts sources such as whole grains, beans, starchy vegetables and fruits. Dietary fiber can help prevent constipation and lower cholesterol levels in your blood, but it is only in foods that contain carbohydrates. To be sure that you consume enough fiber on a low-carbohydrate diet, choose high-fiber foods when you eat carbohydrates. One-half cup of mashed plantains contains 2.3 grams of fiber, or nearly 10 percent of the daily value based on a 2,000-calorie diet. A higher-fiber, lower-carbohydrate choice for a side dish is broccoli, with less than 6 grams of carbohydrates and 2.6 grams of fiber per 1/2 cup.

Keep Your Meals Low in Carbohydrates

Because plantains are high-carbohydrate foods, serve them with low-carbohydrate ingredients to avoid consuming more carbohydrates than your low-carbohydrate diet permits. Fish, meat and poultry are carbohydrate-free choices, and nonstarchy vegetables are low in carbohydrates. Serve broiled tilapia or salmon with plantains and kale sauteed in a small amount of olive oil, or make a stew with lean beef, tomatoes, green bell peppers, spices, such as cumin and paprika, and jalapenos, if you enjoy spicy foods.