Whether you call it “Low Carb” or “Paleo” or “Keto,” low-carb eating can provide undeniably good results.
What Fuels a Human Body?
Generally, human bodies use fuel from foods to make everything in the body work. The fuel comes from fat and carbohydrates. Carbs create blood sugar (glucose) that the body uses for fuel.
Why Eat Low Carb?
You can achieve your optimal weight. For most of us, that means we become leaner. For a few of us, that could mean gaining a bit of weight. Either way, optimal weight should provide health benefits by preventing conditions such as Type 2 Diabetes and cardiovascular issues.
Many people on a low-carb diet claim fewer arthritis flare-ups, lower blood pressure, and clearer thinking.
Why are Carbs Bad?
When carbohydrates are absorbed into the bloodstream, it causes a human hormone called insulin to respond. Insulin converts carbohydrates into fat and quickly stores the fat in human tissue such as skin and even internal organs (aka, visceral fat).
The body will use glucose for fuel while insulin is busy storing what it can as fat. In a relatively short time, your body will become hungry again without using the stored fat for fuel.
Think about that for a moment. Stop and really think about that.
Your body will become hungry while it refuses to convert its stored fat into fuel.
You’ve heard the saying “You’re fat because you overeat.” But if you eat a diet high in carbs and low in fats, then the reverse is actually true: “You overeating because you’re fat.”
How the Heck is Fat Better for Me?
Humankind has been on Earth for about 3.5 million years. During that time, the human body has evolved to fuel itself with (get ready for it) fat.
Yeah, I said “fat.”
For millions of years, our ancestors lived off the land: Mostly animals and seasonal vegetation when vegetables and fruits were available.
Consuming grains and sugars was introduced in our societies about 4,000 years ago. That might sound like a long time, but it’s an infinitesimal amount of time when it comes to evolution. Our bodies simply have not had enough time to adapt to the drastic change in fuel source (translated: going from fats to carbs).
So there’s some who believe that carbs are poisoning the human race. And with skyrocketing obesity and Type 2 Diabetes rates, there’s compelling evidence that this is true.
What About the Good Carbs?
To be brutally honest, there is no such thing as a good carb. All carbs turn to sugar. All of them. All sugars trigger an insulin response in the body. Insulin will store as fat all the sugar not immediately used to fuel the body. And the body will become hungry again without using the stored fat.
So that healthy orange you ate might have significant nutritional value, but all its sugars will metabolize the same exact way as a candy bar. Some nutritionists will contest this, but it’s a scientific fact.
Diet as Religion (a 2-Way Street)
I’m surprised how ingrained the low-fat diet has become in our society. Many people believe this diet like a religion. If the learn of your interest in low-carb eating, others might lash out at you for considering such a controversial (and dangerous) diet. They might even stop being your friend. I’ve seen it happen.
My advice is to avoid the topic if you sense someone will resist your argument for adopting a low-carb diet.
Meanwhile, you’re likely to encounter some who follow the low-carb diet very, very closely who might judge your initial efforts as lacking and “not good enough.” Kinda sounds like these people also believe in their diet as a religion.
Don’t Get Discouraged
Get into low-carb eating at your own pace. If you decide to take your diet a step or two further, then do so on your own terms.
Does This Wannabe Blogger Even Know What He’s Talking About?
I’ve done a ton of research, but I’m lousy at remembering where I heard (or read) what. Also, I can’t advise anyone how to eat. You might have conditions that make low-carb eating a bad idea. I’m not a doctor, and I don’t play one on TV (or anywhere else).
I encourage you to learn more from more valid sources than me.
But here’s the book that changed my life and way of thinking:
Why We Get Fat: And What To Do About It by Gary Taubes [Amazon]