1. Source: www.fatfast.net/Articles/Article/1/554
Low Carb diets have become as popular as apple pie (although apple pie wouldn't be
allowed!). Everywhere you go the message is "low carb, decrease your carbs, or no carbs".
Unfortunately this message oversimplifies many of the healthy eating habits that nutrition
experts have been teaching. The truth is, there are no quick fixes or easy answers when it
comes to healthy eating, and one size never fits all.
The idea that carbohydrates are bad or unhealthy is a misunderstood message that has
taken over our thoughts on good nutrition. Low carbohydrate promoters push the theory that
carbohydrates are to blame for the nation's obesity problems. The truth is overeating and
general lack of exercise are mostly to blame for the obesity epidemic. Think about it this way,
if the theory was true that carbohydrates cause weight gain then every person including
famous athletes who eat carbs regularly would be obese. It just doesn't add up.
The Truth About Carbs:
Proponents of low carb diets claim that when carbs raise blood sugar and insulin levels, the
process can make our bodies store fat more readily. This is true, but did you know that all
carbs are not created equal?
There are different kinds of carbohydrates: simple and complex as well as low glycemic and
high glycemic. This is where most people fail to understand better carbohydrate choices.
There are no bad food choices just those foods that should be eaten daily and those that
should be eaten once in awhile.
Fruits and Vegetables:
While it is true that fruits and vegetables are made up primarily of carbohydrates, the majority
of them have a low glycemic index (glycemic Index is a measure of how quickly a food
increases the blood sugar). This is because fruits and vegetables contain fiber which
naturally keeps blood sugars level. Fruits and vegetables are also the most important food
groups in our fight against chronic diseases. They are loaded in vitamins, minerals,
antioxidants, and phytochemicals which act like our own personal arsenal against chronic
diseases. In fact, the American Institute for Cancer Research has compiled over 4000
studies and has concluded that eating 5 servings of fruits and vegetables per day can
decrease our cancer risk by 20%. Eliminating fruits and vegetables from your diet can lead to
potentially serious health problems such as heart disease and cancer.
Whole Grains- The Important Difference:
Both whole grains and refined grains (sugar, white bread, pasta, etc) are high in
carbohydrate but whole grains, found in foods like oats, barley, brown rice and whole wheat
breads and cereals, contain all parts of the plant kernel thus keeping their important fiber
content intact. Refined grains are stripped of these nutritious components during the milling
process. Yes, it is true that eating large amounts of refined carbohydrates on a daily basis
can drive sugar levels up quickly. However, the fiber in whole grains slows the rise in blood
sugar and therefore the insulin response.
In fact, eating small amounts of whole, complex carbohydrates throughout the day can keep