Now that I’ve gotten your attention… it’s time for some truth bombs! I’m no doctor and I’m no scientist either, so none of this is medical advice… BUT as someone who’s always struggled with my weight, I’ve seen a lot of diets! As a former “Keto Guido”, I developed an almost debilitating fear of carbs, especially as I cycled off the diet and reentered the real world, mainly because “Carb” has been a four-letter word for so many years of my life.
Between Atkins and South Beach and Keto, I spent the last 20 years avoiding carbohydrates. Though I now know there’s a better way to look at food, I’m not upset I did it, because the years of research helped me better understand and reevaluate my relationship with food by thinking of macronutrients like Protein, Carbs and Fats as fuel sources rather than things that needed to be wholly avoided.
YOU DON’T NEED TO FEAR CARBS!
Raise your hand if the word CARB conjures up sugary, refined (and oh so delicious) treats like cakes, cookies and cereals. YES. These are carbs in their most refined form. Sugar. These simple carbs are addictive AF and send chemical signals to your brain, which in turn creates some pretty intense cravings and at times wildly inappropriate mood swings (Anyone who’s cut sugar out of their diet suddenly knows EXACTLY what I mean!).
But despite all this, the reality is, not ALL carbohydrates are bad!
COMPLEX CARBS ARE YOUR FRIEND!
Carbs can be categorized 3 ways; Fiber, Starch and Sugar. Fiber and Starch are complex carbohydrates found in oatmeal, beans, nuts, sweet potatoes, fruits and vegetables are rich in micronutrients. These are actually a preferred energy source for the body, fueling your gut, your muscles and your brain. Complex Carbs are considered to be the key to long-term health and diet/lifestyle sustainability.
Speaking of the brain, here’s a fun fact! The brain only has two sources of fuel; Glucose (from carbs) or ketones (from fats) are the only two things the brain can use for healthy functioning, so it’s important to choose the right fuel in the right BALANCE to make sure you’e operating at peak performance! You can cycle your fuel sources through Carb Cycling (but that’s a topic for another day)
WHAT I HOPE YOU TAKE AWAY FROM ALL THIS
Again, I'm no expert here and I know everyone has different needs, but hoping my story helps you realize that you shouldn't be afraid of food! The key is balance. Do your homework, find what works for you and celebrate the journey of becoming the best version of yourself - If I've learned anything, you just keep evolving, so enjoy the ride!