How many net carbs is in 2 celery sticks?

When following a low-carb or keto diet, it’s important to keep track of your net carb intake. Net carbs refer to the total carbohydrates in a food minus the fiber content. By subtracting the fiber, you get the number of carbs that will actually impact your blood sugar levels. Celery is commonly thought of as a low-carb vegetable, but how many net carbs are actually in 2 celery sticks?

What are Net Carbs?

Net carbs are calculated by subtracting the grams of dietary fiber from the total grams of carbohydrates in a serving of food. The resulting number reflects the amount of carbs that are digested and absorbed, impacting blood sugar and insulin levels. Fiber is not digested or absorbed and passes through the body undigested, so it does not count as a net carb.

Here is the formula for calculating net carbs:

Total Carbohydrates – Dietary Fiber = Net Carbs

Or to put it simply:

Net Carbs = Total Carbs – Fiber

When counting net carbs for low-carb, keto, or diabetic diets, it’s important to use the specific grams of fiber and total carbohydrates listed on a food’s nutrition label or from a reputable nutrition database. The fiber and carb content can vary significantly between different foods and specific brands or varieties.

Nutrition Facts for Celery

Let’s take a look at the nutrition facts for 1 medium celery stalk (40g) according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA):

  • Total carbohydrates: 1.6 grams
  • Dietary fiber: 0.6 grams
  • Sugars: 1 gram

To determine the net carbs in celery, we calculate:

Total Carbohydrates: 1.6g
Fiber: 0.6g

Net Carbs: 1g

Therefore, 1 medium stalk of celery (40g) contains approximately 1 gram of net carbohydrates.

Net Carbs in 2 Celery Sticks

Knowing a medium stalk contains 1g of net carbs, we can determine that 2 average-sized celery sticks would contain approximately 2 grams of net carbs.

However, the specific carb and fiber content may vary slightly depending on the exact size of the celery sticks. Larger, thicker stalks would contain more carbs and fiber compared to thinner, smaller stalks. According to the USDA data, a larger stalk weighing 60g would contain 1.9g of carbs and 0.9g of fiber, equating to 1g of net carbs. A smaller 30g stalk would have 0.8g of carbs and 0.3g of fiber, or 0.5g of net carbs.

To summarize:

  • 1 medium celery stalk (40g) has 1g net carb
  • 2 average medium stalks have approximately 2g net carbs
  • Larger stalks may have up to 1.9g net carbs each
  • Smaller stalks may have as little as 0.5g net carbs each

So for most average-sized celery sticks, you can expect around 1-2g of net carbs per stalk.

Ways to Reduce Celery’s Carb Count

If you’re trying to strictly minimize carbs, there are a couple tricks you can use to reduce the carb count of celery:

  1. Cut off the base: The fiber and carb content tends to be concentrated more in the base of the celery stalk near the root. Removing the bottom 1-2 inches can reduce overall carbs.
  2. Slice thinly: Thinly slice the celery stalk lengthwise or on a diagonal to reduce the fibrous strands and concentrate the crunch. With less fiber per bite, net carbs may be lowered slightly.
  3. Stay with inner stalks: The innermost stalks near the heart tend to be more tender, crisp, and lower in fiber content than the outer stalks.
  4. Stick with smaller stalks: Select thinner, smaller stalks which generally have fewer carbs and fiber than the thicker, larger outer stalks.

However, even with these tricks, celery is still very low in net carbs at just 1-2g per stalk. It can be enjoyed regularly even on strict low-carb, keto, and diabetic diets.

Health Benefits of Celery

Here are some of the top health benefits celery offers, even in small amounts:

  • Hydration – Celery is 95% water, providing hydration.
  • Electrolytes – Contains sodium, potassium, and magnesium for electrolyte replenishment.
  • Fiber – Rich in insoluble fiber to promote digestive health.
  • Antioxidants – Contains vitamin C, beta-carotene, and polyphenols like luteolin to reduce oxidative stress and inflammation.
  • Nutrients – Provides small amounts of B vitamins, vitamin K, folate, potassium, and choline.

The fiber in celery can also help promote feelings of fullness and satiety on low calorie or keto diets.

Using Celery in Low-Carb Recipes

Here are some tips for enjoying celery on a low-carb or keto diet:

  • Fill celery stalks with nut butters, cream cheese, or guacamole for easy snacks.
  • Chop and add raw celery to salads, tuna salad, chicken salad, and egg salad.
  • Saute chopped celery with olive oil, garlic, and herbs and season with salt, pepper, and lemon.
  • Add small diced celery to soups, bone broths, cauliflower rice dishes, and stir fries.
  • Blanch briefly then freeze celery to add to smoothies.
  • Juice celery with cucumbers, fennel, and herbs for low-carb green juice.

When eaten in moderation as part of an overall healthy low-carb diet, celery can be a tasty way to add nutrients and crunch without significantly increasing carb intake.

Typical Keto Diet Recommendations

Here are some typical recommendations for net carb intake on a ketogenic diet:

Net Carbs Per Day Classification
Less than 20g Strict Keto
20g – 50g Moderate Keto

Consuming 20-50g net carbs is generally recommended when starting a keto diet for the first time. This level allows for some flexibility while keeping carb intake low enough to reach and maintain ketosis.

Veteran keto dieters or those with specific health goals may stick to less than 20g daily to remain in deep nutritional ketosis. Going above 50g net carbs starts pushing the limits of ketosis for most people.

When first transitioning to keto, it’s important to account for all sources of carbs including vegetables and to stay under your target carb limit. Low-carb veggies like celery are perfect for providing nutrients and satisfaction while minimizing carbs.

Tips for Starting a Keto Diet

If you’re new to the keto diet, keep these tips in mind:

  • Use a tracking app to count net carbs from all foods and stay below your daily limit.
  • Significantly reduce sugar, grains, legumes, starchy veggies, and fruit.
  • Focus on healthy fats like olive oil, avocado, nuts, seeds, and fatty fish.
  • Include low-carb veggies like leafy greens, zucchini, asparagus, broccoli, cauliflower, and celery.
  • Drink plenty of water and mineral-rich broth.
  • Get enough salt, magnesium, and potassium.
  • Try intermittent fasting for better carb and calorie control.

Pay close attention to carb counts, read labels thoroughly, and stick to whole, unprocessed foods on keto. With some adjustment, low-carb veggies like celery can be enjoyed without disrupting ketosis.

Cooking and Serving Tips for Celery

Here are some tips for preparing and serving celery:

  • Rinse well. Wash celery stalks thoroughly to remove dirt or debris before eating.
  • Trim ends. Slice off the thickest fibrous ends of the stalks.
  • Cut to desired size. Slice to your preferred thickness and length.
  • Keep cold. Store freshly cut celery tightly wrapped in the fridge for up to 5 days.
  • Enhance flavor. Season with salt, pepper, lime juice, garlic, or herbs.
  • Cook briefly. Saute, blanch, or steam lightly to soften while retaining crunch.
  • Save scraps. Use leaves, ends, or trimmings for making broth or adding to smoothies.

Celery holds up well to a variety of cooking methods while remaining low in net carbs. It adds great crunch and moisture to salads, spreads, sides, soups, and more on a keto diet.

Potential Concerns

Celery is considered very safe for most people but there are some potential precautions:

  • Allergies – Celery allergy is possible and symptoms may include itching, hives, swelling, and anaphylaxis.
  • Pesticides – Celery ranks on the EWG’s Dirty Dozen list. Opt for organic when possible or wash very thoroughly.
  • Nitrates – Celery contains nitrates which can convert to nitrites. Nitrites should be limited for those prone to conditions like gout.
  • Medications – Celery can interact with certain medications like anticoagulants and diuretics. Check with your doctor.

Consult your healthcare provider about any concerns related to eating celery, especially if you have an allergy or take certain medications.

The Bottom Line

When eating low-carb, keto, or diabetic diets, celery is a smart choice. Two average-sized celery stalks provide just 1-2 grams of net carbs. It’s very low in sugar and calories, and provides hydration, electrolytes, fiber, and nutrients.

For the best carb and flavor profile, select smaller inner stalks and rinse thoroughly. Slice thinly, chop finely, or juice celery to concentrate its delightful crunch with fewer carbs per bite. Enjoy it raw, cooked briefly, or fermented for a tasty, low-carb addition to meals and snacks.

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