The Truth About Carbs
Updated: Aug 23, 2020
We've all heard this before. "Carbs are bad"
But are they?
There's no denying the fact that carbs have got a bad rep for causing weight gain and obesity but is that justified?
Yes and No.
Fruits, vegetables, beans, oats, brown rice and even seeds/nuts are forms of carbohydrates which are healthy for you.
It's not that certain carbs or foods are 'bad' - I regularly treat myself to my favourite foods (cakes, pizza, chocolate) - it's about over consumption of calories.
High calorie foods tend to have lots of carbs and fat in (cakes, pizza, fried food) which is why carbs get the blame but it's not so much the carbs that are the problem but the high amounts of calories in them.
If you eat more calories than you expend you will gain fat.
It's as simple as that.
That's why many of my clients, and myself included, can include our favourite treats into our diet and still lose body fat because we maintain a calorie deficit regularly and don't over consume on high calorie foods over the course of a week/months/years.
Now, the amount of carbs you can consume can be affected by different factors such as your activity level, your insulin sensitivity, and how efficiently your body uses the carbs you feed it.
But if fat loss is your goal, maintaining a calorie deficit is usually enough as long as most of your calories are coming from whole foods, allowing some room for your favourite treats still.
Carbs are the bodies preferred fuel. But if you're sedentary you probably don't need that many. I would base your carb consumption mainly around your training/exercise (before and after) as that's when they will be used most efficiently.
You should top up the rest of your calories with protein sources and then also some fat sources.
Try and avoid the noise out there in the world.
Don't get bogged down and confused by all the 'solutions' out there.
It's not that carbs are bad.
It's just most people have an energy imbalance. If you're not losing body fat you have an energy imbalance.
Address that and you'll be on your way to success without having to eliminate your favourite foods, starve yourself and hate the process along the way.