blog/The Truth about CARBS (part 1)
The Truth about CARBS (part 1)
Carbs have become such a mysterious and
dangerous word to toss around. People are getting more confused by the day as
carbs become villainized as the reason you can’t lose weight or have a lean
body. So let’s break it down, and understand carbs a little better. Join us for
this 3 part series that will help you to build the healthiest relationship
you’ve ever had with carbs.
“Carbohydrate” literally means “hydrated carbon.” Carbs are wet carbon molecules.
This is our first stop on the carb train as it relates to weight loss. One of
the first things to happen when we follow a “low carb” diet is that our body
can’t hold onto as much water. Carbs hold water, and fats (lipids) do not.
Ever try to mix oil and water? It doesn’t
work. The same is true for a body that is running on fats (known as ketones).
So by default if we stop eating carbs, we shed the water that was stored in
them. This is why a lot of people seem to lose weight quickly when going on a
ketogenic diet (“keto”). Eventually weight loss, as in actual fat loss, does
occur on a low carb diet.
So are carbohydrates bad? No, absolutely not. Do most of us not know how to
handle our carbs? I’d say a large majority of Americans are over doing it.
However, we’re not totally to blame for indulging too much on carbs, and today
you’ll find out why.
Here are the 4 reasons why it’s not your fault
for loving carbohydrates so much.
1.) Your body is wired to survive on carbohydrates. Your brain loves them, and
your central nervous system and blood production can’t live without them. While
you can switch over to using fats for fuel on a keto diet, we most likely
weren’t built to live on fat for more than 30-90 days, and 6 months maximum
(the details of this are for another day).
With that said,
2.) Carbohydrates influence hormone levels.
One of the influences carbs have is to increase the level of “feel good”
hormones such as dopamine. The more stressed out you are, the more likely you
are to crave carbs because of biochemical
reasons and a practical need. Poorly managed stress makes it easy to
overindulge in carbs. In a stressed out
person, the body will try to protect itself by finding ways to feel happier.
HAS CHANGED. There are a lot of chemicals being added to foods. Even the way
we are growing food is different. More and more genetic modifications (GMO) are
altering the DNA of food. YIKES. The body gets confused when it tries to
metabolize a nutrient that is actually a chemical in disguise. We’ll talk a
little more about GMO foods in the next part of this article.
4.) Let’s talk about your gut. That is, your intestines. I am SO happy this topic is finally
becoming more popular. I once wrote a thesis
on the “gut-brain” and mood disorders because of how important the topic is.
Solving gut issues and improving GI (gastrointestinal) health is one of my
specialities as a dietitian. Next week's
article will focus on why carbs are not bad, and how to stop obsessing over
them through the power of good gut health (digestion).
Author: Sara Zaki MS, RDN, RYT is a contributing
writer and dietitian for Nutre. She’s the owner of Zaki Eats LLC. She’s also a
long time yoga teacher, and former college professor of nutrition sciences. She
specializes in finding solutions for clients who have difficulty losing weight,
autoimmune disorders, gut issues, and renal diseases. For daily information and
tips follow Sara on Instagram @Zaki_Eats. She’s located in New Jersey, but
don’t worry, to work with her one-on-one, she offers mobile online sessions straight
from your living room.
Email [email protected]
for questions and scheduling. Use Code ZakiNutre10 for discounted nutrition
packages at Zaki Eats LLC.