Several avocados against a green background to represent best high fiber, low carb foods

The Best High Fiber, Low Carb Foods

Medically reviewed on Aug 16, 2023 by Jillian Foglesong Stabile, MD, FAAFP. To give you technically accurate, evidence-based information, content published on the Everlywell blog is reviewed by credentialed professionals with expertise in medical and bioscience fields.

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Determining what kind of diet will most effectively help you meet your health goals can be challenging. This may be true whether you’re new to nutrition or have been experimenting with different approaches to eating for years.

High-fiber, low-carbohydrate diets are often adopted by people seeking to lose weight or help stabilize their blood sugar.1 However, there are various benchmarks of carbohydrates to aim for. These depend on your weight loss goals, any conditions you’re living with (e.g. type 2 diabetes), and your healthcare advisor’s guidance.

Below, we’ll explain the health benefits of a high-fiber, low-carbohydrate diet. We’ll also introduce some ingredient staples you’ll want to keep on the menu if you think it might be right for you.

What Is A Low-Carb Diet?

A low carbohydrate diet is an approach to eating where an individual limits their consumption of carbohydrates. [1] People who adhere to this diet tend to opt for protein- or fat-rich foods.

Generally speaking, this looks like [1]:

  • 20 to 50 grams per day, or less than 10% carbohydrates (very low-carb)
  • Fewer than 130 grams per day, or less than 26% carbohydrates (low-carb)

Alternatively, moderate-carbohydrate diets include somewhere between 26% and 44% carbohydrates each day.

5 Beneficial Types Of High Fiber, Low Carb Foods

The golden rule for adhering to a high-fiber, low-carbohydrate diet is to choose whole ingredients and reduce your intake of very sweet foods. Replacing highly processed, packaged foods with whole produce is one of the easiest ways to stock your kitchen accordingly.

Take a look at our top five suggestions for high fiber, low carb foods to add to your grocery list.

1. Beans and Legumes

Beans and legumes are excellent sources of fiber and protein, though they tend to be higher in carbohydrates.2 However, for a low-carb diet like the keto diet, it’s still possible to enjoy them in moderate amounts. [2]

Some of the highest-fiber ingredients include:

  • Split peas – 1 cup of cooked split peas contains 16 grams of fiber and approximately 21 grams of carbohydrates. [2]
  • Lentils – 1 cup of cooked lentils contains 15.5 grams of fiber and 11 grams of net carbohydrates. [2,3]
  • Black beans – 1 cup of cooked black beans contains 15 grams of fiber and about 24 grams of net carbohydrates. [1,4]

2. Vegetables

Every diet should include vegetables, as they possess a lot of fiber, as well as essential nutrients. While some can be higher in carbohydrates, like starchy squash or potatoes, others contain lower net carbohydrates and a lot of fiber. [5]

Some of the best choices for high fiber foods include:

  • Peas – 1 cup of cooked green peas contains about 9 grams of fiber. [2]
  • Broccoli – 1 cup of cooked, chopped broccoli contains about 5 grams of fiber. [2]
  • Brussels sprouts – 1 cup of boiled brussels sprouts contains about 4 grams of fiber. [2]

3. Grains

Breads, pastas, and other grains have a reputation for being off-limits on low-carb diets. However, many people can eat grains in moderation so long as they opt for complex carbohydrate alternatives (with permission from their healthcare provider).

Some healthy options include [2]:

  • Barley – 1 cup of pearled and cooked barley contains 6 grams of fiber.
  • Quinoa – 1 cup of cooked quinoa contains 5 grams of fiber.
  • Oatmeal – 1 cup of cooked oatmeal contains 5 grams of fiber.

4. Fruits

People trying out a low-carb diet will often swap simple refined carbohydrates, like candy, for fruits. While fruits contain high amounts of sugar (known as fructose), they’re nevertheless an important part of a healthy diet in moderate amounts.

One of the best ways to choose high-fiber, low-carb fruits is to opt for berries. These tend to have a high water content, helping you to feel full. They also have lots of fiber and good-for-you vitamins. Some optimal choices include:

  • Raspberries – Raspberries are a good source of dietary fiber with low carbs. 1 cup of raspberries contains 8 grams of fiber, 86 grams of water, and a little more than 2 grams of sugar. [1,6]
  • Strawberries – Strawberries are another great source of high dietary fiber containing low carbs. 1 cup of strawberries contains 3 grams of fiber, about 90 grams of water, and about 10 grams of sugar. [7]

Citrus is also an excellent choice for people aiming to reduce their sugar intake. Kiwi and grapefruit are two excellent options, though they tend to have more sugar than berries. People who have type 2 diabetes can also enjoy fruits like [8]:

  • Apples
  • Bananas
  • Blackberries
  • Melon

5. Nuts And Seeds

Nuts and seeds, like chia and flax seeds, contain some of the healthiest fats available in nature. They can also be an important feature of some low-carb diets like the keto diet. Some of the highest-fiber nuts and seeds include [2]:

  • Chia seeds – 1 ounce of chia seeds contains 10 grams of fiber.
  • Almonds – 1 ounce of almonds contains 3.5 grams of fiber.
  • Pistachios – 1 ounce of shelled pistachios contains 3 grams of fiber.

While avocado is considered a fruit, it’s often grouped within the nuts and seeds category because it’s also an excellent source of fat and fiber. [9] In fact, one medium avocado contains about 10 grams of fiber. [9]

Avocados also have a low glycemic index compared with many other nutrient dense foods. This makes them excellent for reducing impact on blood sugar. [9] People who have or are at risk of developing type 2 diabetes are often encouraged to enjoy avocados for this reason. [9]

How Do Low-Carb Diets Work?

Low-carbohydrate diets are primarily intended to help individuals control their blood sugar levels. [1] They’re also prescribed to individuals who [1]:

  • Want to or need to lose weight
  • Struggle with insulin insensitivity
  • Are pre-diabetes or have type 2 diabetes

While researchers and healthcare experts aren’t sure precisely how low-carb diets work to help people lose weight, they’re considered more effective than most other approaches to eating because [1]:

  • They increase satiety – Low-carb diets typically have the effect of helping you feel fuller for longer. In some people, this may help minimize habitual overeating.
  • They tend to limit your caloric intake – Low-carb diets may help foster the calorie deficit needed to lose weight. Reducing the number of carbohydrates consumed also curbs the consumption of simple carbohydrates and refined sugars, which can be destructive to health in excessive amounts.

Are Carbohydrates Bad For You?

When designing a supportive diet, it’s important to recognize that carbohydrates are one of three macronutrients essential for human health (the other two are protein and fat).

You can divide carbohydrates into four main categories [10]:

  • Simple natural carbohydrates– The fructose in an apple is an example of a simple natural carb. These are often high-sugar, but these sugars occur naturally rather than as the result of manufacturing.
  • Complex natural carbohydrates – Squash is an example of a complex natural carb. These carbs arise naturally (in starchy vegetables, but also in legumes and grains), rather than as the result of manufacturing.
  • Simple refined carbohydrates – Maple syrup is an example of a simple refined carb. These types of carbs often have a high concentration of sugar, usually because of their manufacturing process.
  • Complex refined carbohydrates – White flour is an example of a complex refined carb. These foods are chemically similar to complex natural carbohydrates, but they undergo significant processing during their manufacturing.

Distinguishing simple vs. complex carbs will help you eat even healthier. Complex carbohydrates are better for your body than simple ones, and complex natural carbohydrates are generally considered better for your body than complex refined ones. As such, you’ll notice many of the best high fiber, low-carb foods still contain carbohydrates.

Remember, for most people, it’s not a good idea to drastically limit your consumption of carbohydrates unless instructed by a healthcare provider. [1] Certain health conditions may warrant a very low-carb approach (like the “keto” diet) under medical supervision. [1] These include [1]:

  • Alzheimer disease
  • Epilepsy
  • Certain cancers
  • Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease
  • Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)

But for most people, the task is to balance your plate by choosing the most nutritious, glucose-friendly carbohydrates available.

How Much Fiber Should I Eat?

Fiber, also known as “bulk” or “roughage,” is an important part of a healthy diet.11 It consists of two types—soluble and insoluble—neither of which your body will absorb.11 For this reason, fiber helps you feel fuller for longer without adding to the calories you eat in a day. [1]

Additionally, fiber serves to [1]:

  • Slow down and even out the digestion of food
  • Keep cholesterol levels low
  • Keep blood glucose levels steady
  • Support weight loss

The following daily fiber benchmarks are recommended for the average person [2]:

  • People identified female at birth – At least 21 to 25 grams
  • People identified male at birth – At least 30 to 38 grams

It’s rare to ingest too much fiber daily, as bulk tends to decrease appetite.11 However, if you find yourself developing digestive issues like gas, bloating, or constipation, reach out to a trusted healthcare provider. [11] They can help you rework your diet to ensure you achieve the daily fiber you need to stabilize your blood glucose levels and meet the next milestone on your path to well-being.

Build Healthier Nutrition With Everlywell

Whether you're looking to boost fiber intake or create a balanced diet for healthy eating habits, it's beneficial to understand how these compounds work. Designing an ideal diet for your lifestyle can feel overwhelming with so many variables to consider. Luckily, Everlywell is committed to giving you the tools you need to see your current picture of nutritional health more clearly so that you can achieve better health outcomes in the future.

With Everlywell, you can conveniently access everything from metabolic health assessments to one-on-one meetings with telehealth experts in weight management—all from the comfort of your own home. Our new virtual Weight Care+ program even provides GLP-1 prescription services to qualified candidates looking to lose weight and improve their quality of life.

Find out how you can get started by contacting Everlywell today.

Simple vs. Complex Carbs: How Are They Different?

Macronutrients vs. Micronutrients

Is Protein Good for Weight Loss?


  1. 31 high-fiber foods you should be eating. Cleveland Clinic. August 3, 2023. URL. Accessed August 14, 2023.
  2. How much fiber is found in common foods? Mayo Clinic. January 5, 2021. URL. Accessed August 14, 2023.
  3. Fooddata Central Search Results. FoodData Central. URL. Accessed August 14, 2023.
  4. Fooddata Central Search Results. FoodData Central. URL. Accessed August 14, 2023.
  5. How to add more fiber to your diet. Mayo Clinic. November 4, 2022. URL. Accessed August 14, 2023.
  6. Fooddata Central Search Results. FoodData Central. URL. Accessed August 14, 2023.
  7. Fooddata Central Search Results. FoodData Central. URL. Accessed August 14, 2023.
  8. Diabetes diet: Should I avoid sweet fruits? Mayo Clinic. August 31, 2022. URL. Accessed August 14, 2023.
  9. Avocados. The Nutrition Source. February 2, 2023. URL. Accessed August 14, 2023.
  10. Can a low-carb diet help you lose weight? Mayo Clinic. November 15, 2022. URL. Accessed August 14, 2023.
  11. How to add more fiber to your diet. Mayo Clinic. November 4, 2022. URL. Accessed August 14, 2023.
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