How to count carbs: gross carbs/net carbs

How to count carbs

How to count carbs

How to count carbs

One of the questions I often hear regarding low carb diets is how to count carbs in your food. For example:

  • If you eat a bag of steamed broccoli and the package says it has 12 grams of carbs and 4 grams of fiber, does that count as 12 grams or as 8 grams (net carbs)?
  • Would you maybe just not worry about eating vegetables at all?

Well, first of all. If you want to know how to count carbs you have to look at the carbs in everything you eat, vegetables included. The rule of thumb when you’re on the lchf/keto diet is to only eat vegetables that grow above the ground. Others like potatoes, carrots,onions etc contain a lot of carbs but you also have to watch out for tomatoes (did you know they’re actually a fruit?) and other stuff. I’m working on an extensive food list to post here and it´ll show you the net carb content of all vegetables, fruits etc.

I really, really, really recommend you don’t panic and decide to avoid vegetables altogether when you’re learning how to count carbs. There are plenty of low carb vegetables available and I’m telling you it’s really important you incorporate them into your meals. They a great source of vitamins, minerals and fiber and what I like about them is that they provide a nice freshness with the salty/fatty food I’m eating. The biggest part of my carb intake for the day (it’s around 20 grams of carbs) comes from veggies and that’s how I think it should be. Too often I read about people who are doing low carb high fat and seem to live on bacon, eggs, steak and cheese and NOTHING ELSE. That has got to be unhealthy. I wonder how or if they poop at all.

Now, that was a bit outside the topic of this post so let’s continue with the carb talk. When you’re learning how to count carbs, first look at the total carb count on the packaging or look it up online. Then look at how much of the carbs is fiber. Since the fiber doesn’t count in your daily carb intake you can subtract it. That leaves you with net carbs.

If we take the example I mentioned in the beginning: The bag of steamed broccoli had a total of 12 grams of carbs but 4 of them was fibre. The net carb total is 8 grams and that’s the number you count.

I think I may have used the word ‘carbs’ too much in this post, please forgive me. English isn’t my first language. I’m a viking.

Looking for a great keto community? Check out Reddit.



  1. Pingback: Low carb vegetables list January 31, 2012
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