With their hunger-satisfying fiber and low caloric content, apples and carrots can help you lose weight. They might even provide a significant amount of your daily nutrients, but that depends on how much of them you consume. In spite of their nutritional benefits, to stay healthy while following an apple and carrot diet, you'll need to add protein, fats and even a few extra calories in the form of complex carbs.
Any successful weight-loss plan depends on consuming fewer calories than you burn throughout the day. On the flip side, you also need enough calories to supply the energy that keeps you active and healthy. One large apple has 116 calories, while a large carrot contributes 30 calories. If you ate 10 apples and 10 carrots daily, you would consume 1,460 calories. Your body needs a minimum amount of calories for basic life support and to keep metabolism running. Women should get at least 1,200 calories daily, while men need a minimum of 1,800 calories, according to the American College of Sports Medicine. Don't consume fewer calories unless it's under the supervision of your physician.
Nutrients in Apples and Carrots
An apple and carrot diet can easily provide your daily fiber, vitamin C, vitamin A and vitamin K. One large carrot exceeds the recommended daily intake for vitamin A. If you ate five large apples and five carrots, you would get about 100 percent of the daily value for fiber, vitamin C and vitamin K, based on a 2,000-calorie-a-day diet. Ten apples and 10 carrots daily supply enough carbohydrate, potassium and vitamin B-6. Since a standard apple and carrot diet doesn't exist, you're free to create your own plan, but you'll need to eat a lot to get the nutrients required to support your metabolism.
An apple and carrot diet lacks four vital nutrients: protein, fats, vitamin D and vitamin B-12. Your body stores vitamins D and B-12, so you won't become deficient if you limit the length of the diet. A healthy diet includes essential fatty acids, such as omega-3 fatty acids from fish, walnuts and canola oil. Even if you want to follow a low-fat diet, 20 percent to 35 percent of your total calories should come from unsaturated fats, according to the Institute of Medicine. Ten apples and 10 carrots only provide 20 percent of the daily value for protein. Every part of your body depends on a daily supply of protein, which means this diet needs an extra source of protein. A minimum of 10 percent of your daily calories should come from proteins.
Creating a balanced apple and carrot diet is tricky because the amount you eat of each one makes a difference. For example, apples contain significantly more carbohydrates, fiber and vitamin C than carrots. If you eat more carrots than apples, you'll end up with a deficiency of these nutrients. To ensure your health, don't stay on this diet for more than a few days without consulting a registered dietitian or your health care provider. Fill in missing nutrients with a salad made from apples, carrots, walnuts, raisins, leafy greens and a little lemon and olive oil. Add white beans or chicken to your salad for protein. Try mixing quinoa with apples and carrots. Quinoa provides complete protein, complex carbs and 111 calories in 1/2 cup. Consider taking supplements if your diet is short on nutrients.
- NutritionValue.org: Apple, With Skin, Raw
- NutritionValue.org: Carrots, Raw
- American College of Sports Medicine: Metabolism Is Modifiable With the Right Lifestyle Changes
- Merck Manuals: Vitamin B-12
- NYU Langone Medical Center: Vitamin D Deficiency
- Institute of Medicine: Dietary Reference Intakes: Macronutrients
- USDA National Nutrient Database: Quinoa, Cooked
- Linus Pauling Institute: Essential Fatty Acids