Carbs is a dirty word in the fitness and diet world. Just about every mainstream health and fitness junkie leans towards steering clear of carb-inducing foods in favour of leafy greens, vegetables, and plant-based… well everything. In fact, the demonising of carbohydrates has grown to such proportions, entire fad diets have been designed to eliminate them out of your daily calorific intake completely.
And while it has been proven that abstaining from carbs can lead to very noticeable weight loss, you may not want to break-up with your favourite grains so quickly.
1. Cutting out carbs is only a temporary weight-loss measure
The elimination of carbs from your daily meals as a dietary rule for weight loss is grounded in well-studied and well-researched science. When you stop eating unnecessary carbs, your body burns through the carbohydrates that it has already stored inside of it, leading to a loss of water weight.
But once your body has gone through all the carbohydrates it has kept in reserve, carb-free diets tend to lose steam roughly six-months in, according to Dr Darwin Deen, MD, senior attending physician at Montefiore Medical Center’s Department of Family and Social Medicine in the Bronx, New York.
When it reaches that point, carb-free diets are no more effective at shedding pounds than any other fad diet.
2. You’ll feel tired
Carbohydrates fuel your body, quite literally. Broken down into glucose, it helps keep you going throughout the day without you feeling lethargic or exhausted. But a sudden break from carbohydrates will most likely lead to noticeable exhaustion, before you start breaking into your fat reserves for extra oomph.
By the way, fat reserves shouldn’t be your body’s long-term source of energy as they are not completely digested by the body when they are used for energy. Instead, by-products called ketones are left behind, which can build up inside the blood and turn it acidic, leading to possible health complications.
3. You didn’t know that carbs are not made equal
It took us a while to wrap our heads around this fact too, so don’t worry if this is the first time you’re hearing about it. But carbohydrates happen to encompass two different varieties, namely simple and complex carbohydrates.
- Simple carbohydrates: Found usually in fruits, rice, pasta, honey, and junk foods, these are the kind of carbs that your body absorbs quickly and contain little to no nutrients.
- Complex carbohydrates: Found in whole grains, these carbs usually contain B vitamins, folate, vitamin E, zinc and magnesium, and even fibre.
As you can probably tell, consuming complex carbohydrates will help provide your body with that extra boost of nutrients, while consuming too much simple carbohydrates (and not burning off your excess energy) will lead to weight gain.
4. Good carbs can help you shed pounds
Contrary to popular belief, carbohydrates, especially complex carbohydrates as mentioned previously, can actually help in weight loss. Research conducted by the Journal of Nutrition has suggested that adult participants who had three servings of whole grains daily had 2.4% less body fat and 3.6% less abdominal fat than adult participants who only ate a quarter serving a day.
5. Good carbs protect your heart
That organ that keeps you alive and ticking? Good, complex carbohydrates can protect it. As complex carbohydrates are some of our body’s most essential sources of fibre (through foods like oatmeal), the consumption of these carbs can reduce ‘bad cholesterol’ in your body by as much as 5%. This is on top of minimising your risk from experiencing artery blockage, heart attacks and strokes.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that you should be loading up on carbs en-masse. When it comes down to it, balance is the key to your health, so the best piece of advice is to always ensure that you are consuming equal portions of everything!
Tags: body goals, body positivity, carbohydrates, carbs, cellulite, curve, curvena, curves, dieting, exercise, fat, fat burning, fit life, fitfam, Food, food porn, gastronomy, health, healthy, healthy eating, how to burn fat, how to diet, how to eat healthy, how to lose weight, macaroni, malaysia, malaysia weight loss, noodles, nutrition, pasta, rice, waistline, weight loss, weight management, weight management centre, wellness