Carbs have always been to blame if people have gained weight or are trying to lose weight and can’t. However, they’re not the culprit when it comes to hindering weight loss — they actually have many benefits when you eat the right kinds. Here are five common myths about carbs and weight loss.
1. Bread, Pasta and Potatoes Are The Only Carbs
Carbohydrates are one of the three macronutrients your body needs in large amounts daily to function at its best. They break down into glucose, which your body uses as its primary fuel source.
There are two types of carbohydrates — simple and complex. Simple carbs are in fruits, veggies, grains and baked goods, while complex ones are in whole-grain bread, pasta, starchy vegetables and potatoes.
Simple carbs are easier to digest and complex carbs have more complex chains of sugar molecules that take longer to digest. Complex carbs are great to eat when trying to lose weight since they take longer to digest, keeping you fuller for longer.
2. Avoid Carbs Before Working Out
The right carbs before a workout can significantly affect your performance. They can give you immediate energy when you eat them at least two hours before your workout. You’ll have around 25 to 40 grams of oats to keep you full while working and give you slow-digesting, lasting energy.
3. Carbs Are Unhealthy
Unrefined whole grains are great for your diet since they provide necessary nutrients. Fiber can be found in them, allowing you to digest and sustain your energy intake.
Probiotics in your gut consume fiber and turn it into butyric acid, from which your colon cells derive 70% of their energy. Eating bread with dietary fiber helps your digestive system function with good gut bacteria. Other carbs should not be labeled unhealthy — they cause a different reaction in your body and can be consumed in moderation without being problematic.
4. Low-Carb Diets Help You Lose Weight
Keto diets became all the rage because of their claims to burn body fat instead of carbs. Low-carb diets barely made a difference in weight loss compared to a diet high in carbs. Using keto can do other things like lower insulin levels, but insufficient research supports claims of its calorie-burning effects. You might start to feel dizziness and low energy when switching to a keto diet, inhibiting your exercise and energy for daily life tasks.
Carbs tend to hold some water in the body. If you ever tried a low-carb diet and saw the number on the scale go down, it might indicate you lost some water weight rather than fat.
5. Carbs Make You Gain Weight
This myth couldn’t be any more untrue. Carbs can help you lose weight or maintain a healthy weight. The fiber content of carbs keeps you full and energized so you can exercise and perform other daily activities. Overeating any food can cause you to gain weight, so if you’re constantly ordering out, it isn’t going to help you lose the weight you want to.
If you cut carbs from your diet, you’ll have to increase the intake of other food groups like protein and fats. Protein does an excellent job at keeping you full, but fats can add up in calories quickly, even in a small amount. A balanced diet is your best bet to lose weight and not cut out any major food groups.
Eat Your Carbs
Losing weight comes down to many more factors than just how many carbs you consume. If you eat the right kinds of carbs every day, you can reach your weight loss goals without cutting the whole food group out.