The Truth about Carbs




“Carbohydrates make you fat”. Ok, so let’s look at where the truth lies in this because this is something that I see being misunderstood by people far too often.


The truth is that yes, eating large quantities of carbohydrates unnecessarily could lead to weight gain, but this is not exclusive to carbohydrates. Eating large quantities of any food can contribute to weight gain so let’s not single out carbohydrates when in truth, they are an essential macronutrient which should be consumed as part of a healthy eating pattern.


So let’s look at the facts of carbs:


1. Carbs can enhance your mood

Heard of serotonin? Well that’s the feel-good brain chemical which contributes to having

feelings of happiness and research suggests that healthy carb-rich diets promote the

production of serotonin, reducing those feelings of lowness, anxiety and anger.


2. Carbs prevent weight gain

Carbohydrates often contain fibre and foods with fibre keep you feeling full for longer. Not

only that, but a fibre rich diet supports healthy digestion and is essential for your gut to

work normally.


3. Carbs care for your heart!

Back to the fantastic fibre… soluble-fibre (a type found in carb-rich foods like oats and

beans) can reduce our level of ‘bad’ LDL cholesterol. Higher levels of ‘good’ HDL cholesterol

has also been found among those who eat more whole grains (my personal faves are quinoa

and brown rice). So remember your heart health and carb care for your cholesterol.


4. Carbs can support weight loss

Research suggests that switching refined grains for wholegrains reduces total body fat, with

studies on adults demonstrating a reduction in abdominal fat in those eating 3 servings of

wholegrains a day compared to those who eat less than a quarter of a serving.


5. Carbs are a companion to your memory

Carbohydrates support memory functioning and thinking. Multiple studies demonstrate a

link between low/zero-carb diets and poor thinking and memory performance. I can

certainly speak from experience, carbs are definitely a friend when it comes to powering the brain! My carb-free college days may have caused my studies to suffer but now I value brain power far more than diet-myths! Most mornings I tend to catch up with my carb companion porridge… my top fave combo’s soon to be revealed…!


6. Carbs can actually help you lose fat… so forget the ‘carbohydrates make you fat’

malarkey

Back to breakfast chat… studies have shown that eating a breakfast with ‘slow-release’

carbohydrates such as oats or bran rather than refined carbohydrates such as white toast,

can help your body burn more fat during exercise.


SO basically…. carbohydrates are an essential part of our diet that enhance our brains as

well as our bodies. As I firmly believe, no food should be eliminated from our diet as no

foods are neither ‘good’ nor ‘bad’. Care for your carbs as your carbs care for you!


Elle x

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