Are Carbs Your Enemy? Find Out the Real Truth
Carbs which are short for carbohydrates have received a really bad rep. Nobody serious about losing weight is showing carbs any love. There are low carb diets, no carb diets, etc. Even celebrities have come out and said that they barely consume any carbs to maintain their slim, toned figures. So, are carbs really bad for you?
Carbs can be good and bad for you. When consumed at the right times, carbs can in fact help to boost your metabolism and help you lose more weight. They give you the energy to work out harder and carbs also make you feel better. People on low carb diets often feel sluggish and easily irritated. This is a side effect of low carb diets.
Carbs are your friend and not your enemy. You just need to know which the good carbs are and when to consume them. You’ll also need to be aware of how to combine your carbs with the other macronutrients for fat loss benefits.
First Let’s talk about the negative effects of carbohydrates.
-Carbs have a direct impact on a well-known hormone called Insulin. Carbs spike insulin levels and elevate blood sugar higher and faster than all other macronutrients (proteins and fats). In the presence of high insulin levels, it’s pretty much impossible to burn fat as fuel because your body will also burn stored glucose before it can get to the fat stores.
-Excess carb intake creates a lot of water retention (bring on the bloat), which leads to a soft look so it makes you look and feel bloated.
Now, let’s look at the positive effects.
Carbs are the purest, most natural forms of fuel, provided you eat the NATURAL carbs from sources like brown or white rice (I personally prefer white rice because brown rice tends to have anti-nutrients but that’s a story for another day), potatoes, etc. A doughnut is NOT a natural source of carbs.
Carbs help to build muscle, boost metabolism, raise thyroid output, keep leptin (your body’s #1 fat burning hormone) levels in check, improve the free testosterone to estrogen ratio for both men and women, burn more lower stomach fat and much more.
I personally practice carb cycling because I have found it helps me get a jump on fat loss by replenishing my well-spent muscles and keeping my metabolism from dropping due to calorie restriction when I am cutting.
I also find because I practice HIIT Training on a regular basis being solely low carb or kept causes my performance to suffer and me to fatigue a lot faster.
These are definitely some good reasons to keep carbs in your diet. In fact, if carbs help you lose weight faster, why would you even want to eliminate them? You just need to substitute bad carbs with good carbs in moderate amounts.
So what are good and bad carbs?
Cakes, doughnuts, white flour products and actually any processed form of carbohydrates are best avoided. Most people have difficulty doing this because of habit. They are so used to eating these comfort foods that giving them up just seems so painful. Making this crucial change to good carbs will make all the difference. Examples of good carbs would be rice, potatoes, squashes, fruits, etc. Eating these starchy carbs when prepared the correct way, will really benefit you.
Of course, there are a few more factors like combining your carbs and when to consume them. However, those are beyond the scope of this article which just aimed to show you that carbs can be good for you.
If you wish to learn more about fat loss, carb cycling, and weight lifting then tune into my YouTube Channel.