It sometimes feels that trends in weight loss methods seem to change and move as fast as high street fashion. The once low-fat approach to weight loss seems to have been replaced in recent times with the high fat, low carbs approach of Keto with plenty of fads and fashions in between.
Whereas following high street fashion is not generally bad for your health, following fashions in weight loss can be, so we do need to exercise some caution over which approach we choose.
Carbs, protein and fat are the main nutrients in our diet. They have different and important functions in the body and in truth we need them all.
A diet which excludes either fat or carbs will inevitably lead to serious nutrient deficiencies. From a weight loss perspective there’s no doubt that Keto diets can be very effective but it is an extreme approach. In my view Keto should only be carried out for short periods of time in order to avoid nutrient deficits and any unwanted symptoms which may result.
So, health apart, are carbs bad for weight loss?
We need carbs for energy but there is a tendency to eat more than we need to match our energy expenditure. Unused carbs will be converted to, and stored as, fat in the body so in this respect it could be argued that carbs are bad for weight loss but that doesn’t mean we should cut them out completely.
Generally, it’s best to keep carbs in the diet but to watch the quantity and the quality and to balance them carefully with other nutrients.
Following a few simple rules should allow you to keep carbs in the diet but still lose weight.
1. Always consume grains in their wholegrain form e.g., wholegrain rice or wholemeal or granary bread.
2. Keep starchy carbs e.g., potatoes or rice to around 40-50g per portion with a meal.
3. Avoid processed foods. The more processed foods are the quicker the carbs will be converted to sugar in the body and therefore converted and stored as fat.
4. Although we do need carbs in the diet for energy, pure sugar is a form of carbs which is particularly detrimental to weight loss so avoid cakes, biscuits and sweets and don’t add sugar to foods and drinks.
5. Avoid endless snacking particularly on carb heavy foods.
6. Always eat carbs with protein as protein will help to slow the release on sugar into the blood stream.
7. Fill up on plenty of non-starchy vegetables such as broccoli, green beans, spinach etc which should have very little impact on weight gain.
Festive Feel-Good Weight Loss
It’s not too late to lose weight before Christmas and a well balance weight approach doesn’t need to be difficult or leave you feeling hungry or deprived.
In my weight loss programmes I take time examining my clients present diet, explaining what is and isn’t working and redressing the balance in order to really make a difference.
In the run up to Christmas this year I’m introducing a lovely, ‘Festive Feel-Good,’ e-book to accompany my weight loss programmes. This tasty Pumpkin & Ginger Soup recipe below is a sample from my e-book for you to try.
If you’re interested in losing some weight before Christmas then please don’t hesitate to book in for a FREE 30 minute health assessment to discuss this with me.