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To Carb or Not to Carb

Warning: This is a carbohydrate alert—evil lurks among us. This is what a lot of people have been saying who want to lose weight and gain muscle. To these people, carb is the new 4 letter word of nutrition. The most popular diet fad of recent years has been the Atkins diet and, yes, this is a way to shed a lot of pounds initially, but does this work long term? To me, I think it is much wiser to live a lifestyle with long-term results instead of relying on something temporary. Eating a high protein diet would seem easy to do, but in fact it gets harder and harder after a while because the body is failing to get all of the other nutrients that it requires, like carbohydrates. Yes, we need carbohydrates and, yes, we need protein, but not a ton of it. The body starts to crave fruit, breads, pasta, pastries, and anything else that has carbs. Just know that if your body is craving, you will eventually cave in and, when you do, look out because all the rules go out the window and often unhealthy binging is the end result.

These are some of the outcomes you can expect when consuming too much protein (Courtesy of

  1. Weight gain. Excess calories from excess protein may be stored as body fat.
  2. Intestinal irritation. Too much protein has been linked to constipation, diarrhea, and/or excessive gas.
  3. Dehydration. Experts advise drinking a half gallon of water per 100 grams of protein.
  4. Seizures. Seizures have been linked to excess protein intake—but only if insufficient amounts of water are consumed.
  5. Increase in liver enzymes.
  6. Nutritional deficiencies. Just focusing on protein intake causes some high-protein dieters to overlook other nutrients. Ensure that your diet is balanced and nutritious.
  7. Risk of heart disease. This is a bit misleading. A healthy high-protein diet is not associated with heart disease. But if you are getting all of your protein from unhealthy sources that are loaded in unhealthy fats, obviously the risk for heart disease will increase.
  8. Kidney problems. Some believe that high protein and low carbohydrate diets—when done long term—can possibly cause kidney issues, but more research needs to be done.

Are all Carbs the same?

This question has an obvious answer which is: absolutely not. Carbs convert into simple sugars such as glucose and fructose, but there is more to the story. The simple truth is that complex whole food carbohydrates are present with other essential nutrients which, when broken down, are absorbed and digested at a slower rate, not leading to spiked blood sugar levels like refined carbohydrates do. Only the slow and naturally managed release of glucose from food in conjunction with other nutrients such as minerals and phytonutrients is safe.

The ingestion of any refined sugars, such as any type of sucrose, should be avoided completely. Sucrose is found in a lot of fake food products nowadays. When sucrose is released into the blood stream without the fiber and nutrients found in whole foods, it is a highly toxic substance. Pure sucrose should be banned and is not fit for human consumption since it causes ill health through poisonous infiltration into the heart and mind of its user. Glucose can also be toxic in much the same way.

Natural, unrefined, or unprocessed carbohydrates are naturally combined with protein, fat, fiber, vitamins, and minerals that have been designed by nature to be eaten. Natural carbohydrates found in fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, sprouts, and whole grains are good foods in contrast with processed carbohydrates, which can bring on a broad range of neuroses (yes, mental problems) and a great number of physical illnesses. This all boils down to a need to eat an unprocessed whole food diet, preferably mostly raw and nothing from a can or a box. Stay away from soda pop, pastries of any kind, white flour breads, chips, French fries, and processed breakfast cereals (I think you get the picture). All of these things please the palate, but is it really worth losing one’s health over? For me, not only feeling well is very important, but having mental stability is huge!

One way I like to get a good supply of healthy carbs is with plenty of bananas and fruit in my after workout protein shake and by eating a whole-food, plant-source rich diet while staying away from the junk. We are a mind/body/spirit being and all three depend upon the right nutrients in order to be complete. That includes good carbs.

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