When is Eating Carbs Okay?


A diet rich in soy and whey protein, found in ...

You want to lose weight and be healthy—so you avoid carbohydrates such as breads and pasta. Who can blame your for this logical reasoning? With all the bad press about carbohydrates, many people believe the best way to lose weight is to avoid them altogether. In the short term, low-carb food intake appears to be more successful in promoting weight loss than their low-fat counterparts.

So you should give up carbs altogether—right?

Wrong! Nothing could be further from the truth!

Complex carbohydrates are essential for the proper functioning of the body and serve as the body’s primary source of energy. Carbs conserve energy levels and are dangerous when eliminated. Even the popular Atkins diet recommends introducing carbohydrates back into the diet after the first no-carb phase.

The issue is not whether to eat carbs—but which carbs are the best to take in. Firstly, avoidprocessed foods of any sort if you want to eat a proper, balanced diet.

Foods derived from whole grains like whole wheat breadswhole grain pasta, and more unusual grains such as bulgursteel-cut oats and quinoa, all are quite acceptable carbs to add to a diet.Fresh fruit and vegetables are also necessary for a healthy weight-loss program. Fresh and whole grains are carbs that digest well, maintain proper insulin levels, and help keep you protected from a variety of diseases.

They also look and taste fantastic!

Another consideration goes beyond which carbs you include in your diet and concerns quantity. Most diets—carbs or otherwise—are in desperate need of portion control. Heavily processed carbohydrates, the kind you find in all-you-can-eat pasta dinners and super-sized orders of French fries cooked in oil, are the greatest evil when it comes to combating fat. Those carbs are blamed for weight gain when serving size, not nutritional value, is the real culprit.

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