Aren’t they really bad for you? Isn’t carbs one of those things you should never eat if you are trying to lose weight?? I mean, protein only diets are the best, right? I ate carbs once and I nearly died (true story!!).
If you are a little confused to what carbs is, I’ll break it down for you. There’s four macronutrients; Carbohydrates, Protein, Fat and Alcohol. Our bodies use carbs, protein and fat for building blocks and energy. Your body uses alcohol just for fun (or actually tries to get rid of it as soon as possible) and is not actually a macronutrient, but it provides energy to your body. Anyways, back to the Carbs – one of the most hated macronutrients (perhaps after fat – plenty of people hate fat too). Carbs is your body’s main fuel source (unless you are in ketosis and use fat for energy) and are broken down to glucose that is easy for your body to use. You find carbs in food like potatoes, rice, bread, fruit, grains, vegetables, pasta and chocolate. Fibre is a type of carbohydrate that your body cannot ingest, but rather helps you go to the toilet.
Wilhelm Banting was one of the first to introduce Low Carb Diet to the world, after a doctor recommended him to limit refined and easily digestible carbohydrates to lose weight. And it worked. Later there has been lots and lots of other Low Carb Diets such at Atkins, The Paleolithic Diet, The Zone Diet, LCHF, South Beach Diet and The Dukan Diet. I believe that eating too many carbs will make you fat unless you exercise a lot. But the important word in these diets (and you know how much I love diets) is LOW. It doesn’t say NO carbs anywhere (maybe except in Dukan?). So, some carbs are actually totally fine. Some, not a shed load; some. Unless you are an IronMan, then you can happily eat a shed load of carbs with no problem. And, if you are terrified of fat, you need some carbs to survive.
If you love fat on the other hand, carbs might not be that important after all. You can only store so much glycogen in your muscles and liver to have energy for your next meal. But you can store a lot of fat. You can eat so much carbs that you are feeling sick, but you still want more. Try eating the same amounts of fat. It’s actually impossible. Your body has breaks for consuming fat and proteins, because that has been the primary source of energy for millions of years. We can function just fine in ketosis. It’s just that with all the readily available carbohydrate laden food we get today, your body never go into ketosis and keeps trying to burn all the energy you are consuming. Rather than the energy already stored on your body. With a diet low in carbohydrates and high in fat, you teach your body to burn fat for energy rather than glucose.
Confused? I’m getting confused writing this, so I totally get you! What I mean to say is, there is nothing wrong with eating some good carbs. I prefer the once that hasn’t been f**ked with, the natural stuff like fruit and vegetables. Potato and Sweet Potato. A little rice and bread. But you don’t need hundreds of grams of carbs a day – that will eventually make you fat (unless you are an IronMan). I will come back with more about Fat later, as I am a big fat lover (No, I am not a big, fat lover, but I love fat!).