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Everything about carbs

I’m positive someone has told you that eating a low carb (carbohydrate) diet is THE way to become slimmer and healthier. Have you tried to eat less carbs, but haven’t had the results you were hoping for? If you want a low carb diet to be successful it is important to be well-informed. To help you out I’ve made a list with all the dos and don'ts.

Dos

  • Healthy carbs. The type of carbs you should keep eating are non- or low-processed carbs which contain high quantities of fibre. Change food with processed carbs for food with healthy carbs like: vegetables, fruits, legumes, brown rice, quinoa, nuts and seeds.
  • Finding the right balance. In our modern western diet the balance of macronutrients (carbs, fats, protein) is completely gone. On average we eat more than double the amount of carbs than we used to. We don’t need all of these carbs! Nowadays people get around 50% of their calories from carbs, however ideally we only need 20% - 30%.
  • Eat carbs after exercise. Have you ever heard the best is to eat carbs as early in the day as possible, so you’d have time to burn the carbs? Makes sense, but it’s not true! It has been proven that eating carbs after exercise will help you lose weight! This has everything to do with the insulin levels in your body.
  • Supplement iodine deficiency. Did you know many people have a deficiency of iodine? Our modern western diet doesn’t contain the amounts of iodine we need. Foods which are naturally rich in iodine are coalfish, haddock, lobster, cod, mussels, herring, shrimps, eggs, seaweed, brazil nuts and hazelnuts.

Don'ts

  • Consider carbs the enemy. Carbs are, just as fats and protein, an important macronutrient. Your body needs them for energy and recovery. It’s true that eating too many carbs is more linked to weight gain than eating too many fats or protein, but you shouldn’t completely stop eating all carbs because your body needs them.
  • Avoid fruits. Fruits contain a lot of sugars and therefor carbs. However, your body absorbs sugars from fruits in a complete different way than sugars in processed foods. Besides, fruit contains a lot of fibre, which ensures that nutrients in the food are absorbed slowly and therefore give you energy for longer. Long story short, don’t stop eating two or three pieces of fruit per day.
  • Only eat a low carb diet when you’re overweight. You aren’t trying to lose weight, so you don’t see the point in eating a low carb diet? Then you probably don’t know a low carb diet will give you more energy, a clearer mind and reduce the risk of getting diabetes and cardiovascular diseases.
  • Think all carbs are the same. Because they aren’t. The carbs you should stay away from are processed carbs which you find in processed foods such as sodas, fast food and ready meals. The carbs in these types of foods are mostly stripped of all kinds of healthy nutrients. Also bread, pasta and rice are products with processed carbs. So eat foods with non-processed carbs!
  • Change to a low carb diet overnight. If you eat many processed carbs, it is better to slowly decrease your carb intake. Your body is used to use these kind of carbs for energy. If you suddenly stop eating them you can feel dizziness, faintness or tiredness. Instead, try to lower your carb intake a little bit every day. This process doesn’t need to take more than 3 weeks

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