Carbs!

January 20, 2010

 

 

 

Whats the deal with carbs? Okay class, let's look at the science and get a bit of basic knowledge on carbs. A carbohydrate is an organic compound with the general formula Cm(H20)n, that is consisting only of carbon, hydrogen & oxygen.

 

Now, is this important to remember? Hmmm...Probably not. But hey, let's pretend we want to be smart even if it's for just a moment.

 

These days the vilification of carbs is on. It's usually the starchy grains that are being spoken about. Foods that are high in starchy carbs, In case you missed it are usually the ones we all want to eat the most of(bread, cereals, potatoes, rice).

 

Carbohydrates are the most common source of energy in living things. Glucose is the featured carb. Proteins & fats are necessary building components for the body. Carbs on the other hand are not as essential. The body can get all the energy it needs from protein & fats.

 

The brain can use fat for energy through ketones, but develops a serious crush on carbs if given the option. 

 

How much carbs should you have? Would you be surprised if the answer is "IT DEPENDS". Depending on your body type and other variables is how you can determine much carbs you can have. What are your goals? If it's to lose weight, then you probably need less. If you're training for an athletic event, depending on the intensity of it, that will dictate how many carbs you can have.

 

I'm sure you've come across the term good vs bad carb. Let's break that down a little more. Good(complex) vs bad(simple). What does that even mean?
What these terms are referring to is the glycemic index or glycemic load. The "good" carbs are those that are typically high in fiber(whole grains, fruits & vegetables). These are classified as low on the glycemic index. These types of carbs are released slower into the blood stream for a more steady energy. The "Bad" carbs are typically more processed foods(white bread, pretzels, candy). These are high on the glycemic index, and provide a quick spike in energy or blood sugar.

 

When should you try and incorporate carbs into your diet? Depending on your goals/activity is when you should consider taking in more or less.
Fiber, found mostly in carbs, is essential to overall health. It improves gut health(digestion) and function. It also helps prevent colon cancer, regulates blood sugar, and promotes long term heart health by reducing cholesterol. colorful carbs(fruits & veggies) are also good for overall health. Fiber is found in oatmeal, dark leafy green, beans & whole grain products.

 

 

Low-Carb Diets:

 

There are several diets out there that advocate not eating carbs or eating very low carb.

This is a way of losing weight in a hurry. after all, every gram of carbs stores 3 grams of water. but that's not such a bad thing since it helps to keep us hydrated and satiated. If you go on a no carb diet it's kind of like taking SpongeBob and wringing the water out of him. you will lose water weight, but as soon as u eat carbs again, SpongeBob goes back to retaining water(which again is not a bad thing. its not water weight were really trying to get rid of anyways).

 

There is a discussion going on in the nutrition world as to how healthy certain carbs may be. As of now there is  a lot of work to be done before we get to an answer.

The sensible approach to eating carbs should be to eat carbs depending on your activity level. Carbs equal energy. In high intensity activity, without enough carbs you our probably going run out of gas.

 

Thats the "skinny" on carbs. As in many things in life, there's a time and a place. If you eat the right things at the right time you will find yourself in a fine place. That place is one of understanding. Once you begin to understand your mind/body, it feels fantastic! A happy you is a you that will accomplish many more things effectively.

Keep the dream alive...Make the dream a reality....LIVE THE DREAM!!!!!!!!!!!

 

Track Of Day - Basket Case - Green Day

 

  

 

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