The Carbohydrate Myth – Are Carbs Bad to Eat?

With the backlash against so-called “clean eating”, where whole food groups are labelled good and bad, a more common-sense anti-fad approach has been gaining strength.

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 Not only are these fads depriving us of necessary nutrients, at their worst they can be downright dangerous. Without carbs for fuel, in extreme cases, the body becomes catabolic, meaning it starts to break down lean muscle tissue for food.

Carbs are an excellent energy source for us. If our bodies need to use fat or protein, it takes longer for the body to convert these to energy. Good, healthy carbs are brain and mood food. However, make sure to control your portion size if you wish to reduce your weight leading into the spring and summer

I am advocating the use of low GI foods, which are highly nutritious: high-fibre whole foods such as organic brown basmati rice, sweet potatoes with the skin on, and small amounts of whole grain pasta. Always add a bit of fat to slow down the break-down of sugar in the body. Also, oats, which can be eaten as savoury or sweet, are excellent for providing fuel.

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Remember, many vegetables, nuts and beans have medium to high levels of carbs, so we are already eating carbs when we eat these foods too!

If you are a working mum or in a high-powered job, or even partaking in sports, you would not imagine eating starchy foods as they do not harm the body, especially if you need fuel to perform. We a need balance of all food groups. Fermented breads such as sourdough are great because they help good bacteria in the gut.

 

Top Tip - Resistant Starch

Place a bowl of cooked starches (pasta, sweet potatoes, rice) in the fridge and cool down, reheat and eat later in the day – this causes the starch to become more resistant and fibrous, which increases your fibre intake. Great for the brain and your mood!