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Old 12-09-2003, 08:48 PM   #1
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What Qualifies a Recipe to Be "Low Carb"

All WOE's please tell me what you think.
What criteria must a recipe have for you to judge it as Low Carb.

Do you count just the net carbs? (carbs - fiber)
Do you look at the refined sugar or grain content? (white sugar, molasses, wheat or white flour, cornstarch, honey)
Is it low carb if it has lots of carbs, but also lots of fiber? (e.g. soybeans 8g total plus 7grams of fiber)

I'm curious because of another thread about "illegal" ingredients in the recipe room recipies.

Since everyone is different, no item is really illegal, but exactly what has to be special about a recipe to make it Low Carb, and not just another recipe?

For example. my chili recipe is the same as before except I sub tomato sauce for tomato soup and soy beans for black beans. That's only a difference of maybe 50 -60 grams for the entire recipe which breaks down to only a difference of 5 less carbs per serving. 1 cup equals ~10g carb . Regularly its ~ 16 g carbs.
Not much different from the original recipe, so is it low carb or just Lower carb. Does it qualify for it's own space in a Low Carb Recipe room? Personally I don't think so.

I want to know how you think about it. Please enlighten me
And Happy Tuesday! Oops, it's almost Wednesday
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Old 12-10-2003, 04:18 AM   #2
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In my opinon, for a recipe to be considered "low carb" it should have less than 10 NET grams per serving, but that is not the only criteria. For me, it should contain no white flour, no rice, corn, potatoes, beans (except green or soy beans, which I am allergic to so wouldn't use anyway!), or flours made from those ingredients, no sugars, no ingredients that are on the list of foods not allowed, as indicated on page 230 of DANDR @ 2002 (the white book).

That said, there are many "reduced carb" recipes that are fine for many people, especially when they are pre- or maintenance. For me, it isn't just the "bottom line" number of carbs per serving, it is what those carbs are made of that is important. I'd rather have a serving of a homemade chicken dish, with useable carbs of 12 g, or even a slice of low carb cheesecake with a low carb fruit topping, than two marshmallows, 2 Tbsp. of steak sauce, or 2 crackers made with white flour, for 10 grams each, for example.

Some recipes include a very small amount of molasses, or a teaspoon of sugar (especially for recipes with yeast), or a tablespoon of cornstarch, for example. Spread over the entire recipe, the resultant impact on blood sugar is likely minimal, but the result for the way the recipe handles, or for the quality of the final product, may make a huge difference, and people may choose to make that small allowance.

Also, there ARE some recipes in the recipe room that are anything BUT low carb. I just choose to not use them. They are possibly reduced in carbs from an original higher carb recipe, but still not what I would choose to eat - for example any recipe with Cool Whip is not going to find its way into my kitchen. That doesn't mean the Recipe Room is filled with recipes that are loaded with "illegal" ingredients. I think some people have entered recipes with little understanding of what a low carb recipe is - very often "Newbies", who are enthusiastic about finding a way to reduce carbs in a favorite recipe. Also, not everyone who visits this place is on Atkins. So what may not be allowed on Atkins, for example, may be perfectly fine for Sommersizing, The Zone, Protein Power, etc. (Just as examples, of course). If a recipe doesn't meet someone else's criteria, that doesn't mean it's a bad recipe!

So our Recipe Room is not perfect - but it has a large number of "perfectly legal" recipes that are the result of hard work and research by avid low carbers and great low carb cooks who have taken the time to share their efforts here, for free.

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Old 12-10-2003, 08:25 AM   #3
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Hmmm...I'd say no more than around 10 or so tops per serving and most importantly no sugar, flour, starch (unless it's a necessary ingredient that has starch-like instant beef boullion or something used in a very small amount).
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