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Carbohydrates Are Good For You

April 1st, 2009 by Temple City Tribune

carbohydrates-t5914 I’m really glad to see that the Diet Industry has allowed the lowly Carbohydrate back into our lives after a good 5 years of ousting.  Much like the come backs of Brittany Spears (head-shaving and rehab) and Fat (trans and unsaturated), Carbohydrates have now been allocated the titles “good and bad” and have been down graded from being the enemy, to something a dieter reluctantly lets back into their diet, with the proviso that they don’t gain any weight.  Because, apparently it’s the carbohydrate’s fault.

Carbohydrates are split into three groups: simple (sugar), complex (starch), and fiber.  One thing the multi-million dollar Diet Industry doesn’t report is that carbohydrates give us the energy to perform all body functions and muscular exertion.  The Industry also omits to point out that if we reduce our intake of carbohydrate, then we are often getting rid of a valuable source of fiber.  Furthermore, fat burns on a carbohydrate flame meaning that carbohydrates regulate the digestion and utilization of the fats we take in.  Isn’t the whole point of dieting to lose fat?  Therefore, why would we omit the very thing that decides whether it is stored or used?

Notwithstanding, I think it is important to point out the difference between the media-labeled “good” and “bad” carbohydrate.  Obviously, the more natural the food source, the healthier and this correlates to carbohydrates too.  Carbohydrates that are high in fiber, are the best combination as the fiber helps to regulate the body’s absorption of glucose, and in turn regulates insulin levels.  Eating a high starch, natural food and its attached fiber (baked potato and skin) is far healthier than eating the starch alone.

“Bad Carbohydrates” often refers to a more processed food; a food that is high in carbohydrate rather than just a simple or complex.  For example, brown rice would be a “good carbohydrate” and crackers would be a “bad carbohydrate” because of the amount of processing.  Bad carbohydrates also include potato chips, cookies, cake, and white bread. 

It is very important to note that “bad carbohydrates” are often unhealthy because they are very high in saturated fat and sugar, not just that they are high in carbohydrate.  That misunderstanding is how carbohydrates became the enemy in first place. 

In conclusion, there is no special formula to losing weight; it is calories in versus calories out.  People who lose weight on diets that cut out one of the major components that our bodies require to survive (protein, carbohydrate or fat), is doing so because they have reduced their caloric intake not because Carbohydrates are BAD!!

Lynda Linforth owns Train Inc., a personal training studio in Arcadia that offers fitness programs for all needs and abilities.  Specializing in post rehab, all trainers are nationally certified through either ACE or NASM and Lynda is a Licensed Nutritionist. Please ask about our Self Defense and Bride and Bikini Boot Camp classes at 626 447 1049 or at lyndalinforth@gmail.com.

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