Carbohydrates are made up of sugars, starches, and fibers. They are commonly found in white bread, pasta, whole grains, and processed foods.
Even though they’re delicious, on the keto diet, they are drastically reduced and replaced with fat. This reduction in carbs puts your body into a metabolic state called ketosis. When this happens, your body becomes incredibly efficient at burning fat for energy.
How can you tell if you’re eating too many carbs?
🔴 If you’re always hungry
Carbohydrates are digested quickly by the body, leaving you hungry soon after eating them, so if you’re overeating on carbs, you’re also likely not eating as much fat or protein, both of which digest more slowly and keep you feeling full longer.
🔴 Your body bloats
Carbohydrates naturally bind with water in your body. For every gram of carbs that you consume, you also hold on to three grams of water. So, after you eat a carb-rich meal, your body retains excess water and you look and feel puffy as a result.
Also, many common sources of carbohydrates cause abdominal gas, which will make you feel/be bloated.
🔴 You crave sugary foods
One of the surprising reasons you always crave sugar is that, well, you’re eating sugar (which btw is a carb). Eating cookies, chocolates, doughnuts, and cupcakes actually make you crave more than just that one treat.
Dopamine, also known as the happy hormone, gets released into your body as you consume sugar. This chemical triggers your brain and body to react, and seek more as a reward.
After chowing down on a big bowl of pasta, you might feel great at first—but it won’t last long.
When your body digests a simple carbohydrate, glucose is released into your bloodstream in a quick, large dose. This gives you a burst of energy, albeit only a temporary one. What follows is essentially a sugar crash, leaving you feeling less energized than you were before you ate.
🔴 Skin breakouts
Researchers have been studying the relationship between acne and diet for years, and many have concluded that a high glycemic diet (i.e. one high in refined carbs) may be the source of recurrent skin breakouts.
🔴 You are gaining weight
If you’re realizing no matter how much you exercise, the weight just won’t come off, then you may need to look deeper into your diet.
Carb-rich diets can make you feel hungry and lead you to eat more calories than you really need. This is because foods with low fiber content metabolize glucose faster, and the sudden spike in blood sugar levels promotes the production of insulin. When insulin absorbs too much glucose, it is converted into fat and stored in your body.
For example, one cup of cooked rice contains about 170 calories and 37 grams of carbs, while one cup of cooked carrots contains only 55 calories and 13 grams of carbs. Plus, those 13 grams of carbs in carrots also include 5 grams of fiber – a nutrient that will help you stay full for longer.
To sum it up…
Carbohydrates, protein, and fat make up the three macronutrients that supply your body with energy. ⚡️
Still, it should be noted that not all carbs are the same. Carbs are present in whole foods like starchy vegetables, legumes, and whole grains, but they’re also a major component of processed foods. These refined carbs, also called simple carbs, include sugars.
Refined carbs lack the fiber and micronutrients of their whole-food counterparts, and dietitians/nutritionists agree we should limit our intake.
So, moderating and reducing refined carbs intake is the best course of action for healing your body (of course, if you’re currently on keto, you already know that carbs are not your biggest friend right now).
Eating the right foods, and more importantly, the right amounts of fat, protein and carbohydrates, can be the biggest factor in reversing the health problems we see all too often today. 😉