CARBS! Such a dirty word nowadays. But what most people don’t realize, carbohydrates are what keeps us alive. I hear many people, all the time, tell me they don’t need carbs or want to completely cut them out of them out of their diet. If they understood how important carbohydrates are to our diets, I’m pretty sure they would rethink this logic. So in this post I will not only explain how carbohydrates are beneficial to your fitness but give examples of the good, the bad and the ugly carbs!
45 to 65% of your daily diet should consist of carbohydrates. Carbs are the main energy source for your body and the only source of fuel for your brain. Diets lacking in the necessary amount carbs can have serious complications over time. Not only will the body and mind not have the energy to preform it’s necessary task but the digestive tract, kidneys and other organs will fail to act properly. The body may even tap into their protein source for energy, breaking down the body’s muscle. We all know a diet high in carbs have it’s own complications as well; high blood sugar, visceral (organ) fat and body fat. (Remember, balance is always important in maintaining a healthy lifestyle.) It’s all about getting the good carbs in. There are 3 types of carbs; sugar, starch and fiber. All three are very important to a healthy diet. The sugar category consist of ‘simple carbs’, most fruits and vegetables, milk and table sugar (candy). The body use these as immediately energy sources and what is not used are stored in the liver and turned to fat. Starch and fibers include other vegetables, potatoes, white/whole grains as well as white/brown rice. The body takes a little longer to break these down, which helps you feel full longer after eating. Every ones knows good carbs; apples, oranges, greens, whole grains, etc. But the ones in the middle, ‘bad’, are the most debatable. ‘Bad’ carbs aren’t really all that bad, potatoes, chocolate, rice, bread, if consumed in moderation, especially when in need extra energy. Take a potato, which is considered a starch, it has many great vitamins and minerals, no cholesterol and has plenty fiber in the skin. But if that potato is skinned, rolled in salt, slathered in butter and deep fried then it becomes UGLY! Those are the carbs to stay away from. Now, everyone is not at a place where they can cut a food completely out their diet, however, limiting is very important. Once again, it is all about balance and variety! Regardless of your current diet, there is always place for modifications. Choose one ‘bad carb’ to give up for the rest of our 21 day challenge. I’m giving up white bread, particular dinner rolls in the evening. Lately, every dinner I have had some type of bread, instead I will replace the calories with an extra serving of vegetables.
Today is rest day. Try to focus on your diet and plan for our 7 pm workout tomorrow. Another lift day! Adding another 5 reps! Good luck everyone on your journey to fitness!