When you are looking to get healthier, one of the most effective strategies is to start cutting carbs from your diet. In fact, most of today’s popular diet trends like the Atkins or paleo diet call for just that. Read on to find out why cutting carbs to lose weight could be the best choice to successfully reach your weight loss goals.
How Carbs Hinder Your Diet
In today’s modern society, most of us pack our daily meals with pasta bowls and freshly baked loaves. They make cheap and convenient meals that suit all taste buds.
The problem is, our modern diets are having a detrimental effect on our society. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) 66% of Americans are overweight, 33% are obese, and those numbers are continuously rising each year.
It’s clear from these results that our current grain-filled diets are not the way forward if we want to live fit and healthy lives. Grains are made from carbohydrates which are broken down into glucose (sugar) in the body. This glucose should be used as energy. However, any excess glucose is instead stored as fat.
When your diet is packed with high glycemic grain foods and sugar, your body is continually in fat storage mode. This means your body never has the opportunity to use your stored body fat as fuel. These stored triglycerides are normally found around the waist. So if you’d like to reduce your waistline, you can start by reducing your refined carbohydrate intake.
Although the idea of cutting out carbs completely from your diet may seem drastic, there’s a lot of research supporting this type of change. Numerous studies have shown that switching to a ketogenic (zero sugar) diet can actually have positive results on a number of diseases, even in cancer patients.
Which Carbs to Cut
When we talk about cutting carbs there are four main types of food to avoid.
- Bread and Baked Foods
If you want to be healthy, bread and bakery foods are the first things you need to cut from your diet. These kinds of foods will usually have the strongest effect on your blood sugar, therefore, increasing the production of insulin, the hormone responsible for fat storage.
- Wheat Pasta
Pasta that is made from wheat is another culprit of spiking fat-storing insulin. Filling up on a big bowl of pasta in the evening is the quickest way to pile on the pounds.
- White Rice
Although rice doesn’t have the same gluten issues as wheat, it does raise your blood sugar enough to promote fat storage, especially if eaten regularly. Believe it or not, Japanese sumo wrestlers have bowl after bowl of white rice in order to fatten up. Unless you want to look like them, it’s best to cut down on rice or at least switch to brown rice for an occasional treat which is a healthier alternative.
If you’re looking to get healthy and lose weight, it’s a good idea to avoid potatoes for a while. This is because they have one of the strongest effects on blood glucose levels of any vegetable. Although good quality steamed organic potatoes are filled with healthy essential nutrients, most people get their potatoes in the form of french fries or chips, which are most definitely to be avoided.
Which Carbs Can You Keep?
Like most things in life, not all carbs are created equal. Although you should remove all refined carbs from your diet if possible, many high- fiber fruits and vegetables are a natural source of carbohydrates.
The fact is, when you cut back on grains and sugar and start getting your carbohydrates from high-fiber vegetables, your body will naturally begin accessing its stored fat as fuel. Simply changing your fuel source makes getting healthy (and losing weight) a much simpler process.
Ideally, you want to be reducing your daily carbohydrate intake to around 50 to 80 grams per day. Doing so will give your body the opportunity to utilize stored fat you have accumulated. Without any other changes to your diet or exercise regime, you will be on the right track for weight loss.
When looking to start a healthier lifestyle and lose weight and keep it off long term, adjusting your meals to no longer center around carbohydrates is the way to go.
Packing your plate with healthy protein from organic sources like turkey, chicken or eggs, accompanied by a mix of flavorsome veggies like pumpkin, bok choy, eggplant, and kale is a great way get the most flavor and nutrition from your food.
As let’s face it, how much flavor does a bowl of plain white rice offer anyway?