HCLF stands for High Carb Low Fat. This is a type of vegan diet that flips the script on traditional weight loss diets that promote the idea of reducing Carb intake if someone wants to lose weight. The idea is that on this diet you can eat all the fruits and vegetables and grains you want and still lose weight. You are expected to eat whole foods plant based diet that is 75-80% carbs, 10-15%protein, and 10-15% fats.
For some people this seems really attractive as this opens up the possibility of all the starch-rich diets like potatoes, pasta, and bread (as long as its whole grain), that they usually miss when they go on diets. Here is a list of things you can eat on this diet:
1) Whole grains like oats, quinoa, rice, barley, pasta and bread.
2) All veggies
3) All fruits
4) All plant-based protein foods like beans, peas, and lentils.
Here are the things to avoid on this diet:
1) All meat
2) All dairy based products
3) Fatty oils (because remember the macro breakdown is 10-15% fats)
4) Sugary Foods
5) Processed Foods
There are several health benefits of this diet. Since whole plant foods are more nutrient-dense, contain lots of fiber, and are generally low in calories you feel fuller faster, and get the healthy nutrition your body needs to fight off diseases, while shedding unhealthy fat.
This is the ideal scenario. There are some people who seem to have the opposite effect and actually report gaining weight on this diet. This usually happens when they ignore the balanced nature of this diet and start putting a heavy emphasis on the breads, pastas, and the potatoes. Many people also start incorporating baked goods periodically on this diet ignoring the fact that these type of food also count as processed foods and have tonnes of unhealthy fats, and are sometimes loaded with sugar.
The diet we propose in the ABCD method promotes a balanced intake of macros and states clearly what to eat and what to cut-off and what is happening inside your body when you make those choices so that you are armed with the knowledge to drive towards healthier options. This way you can avoid starting with a healthy premise and gain unintended effects and instead see the benefits you are aiming for.