Why You Should Avoid The No Carb Diet

November 12, 2012

Why You Should Avoid The No Carb Diet

Carbohydrates or “carbs” are the current boogeymen of dieting. It used to be calories, then fat and now the poor little carbohydrate. Carbohydrates are present in foods like potatoes, rice, bulgur, grains, wheat products, wheat berries, pasta, cereals, most fruit, fruit juices and bread. Some carbohydrates, such as white potatoes, do contain lots of calories. High consumption of carbs has been linked to obesity and Type 2 diabetes.

Because of this, some dieticians and diet book authors recommend that a no carb diet is a quick way to weight loss. But a no carb diet is a no good diet, according to many dieticians at the Mayo Clinic and the Harvard School of Public Health. Even if you do manage to lose weight, you will gain it back. Restricting carbohydrate intake is better than following a no carb diet.

Why You Need Some Carbohydrates Every Day

Sure, carbohydrates may contain sugar, fats and calories, but they are not as evil as many no carb diet proponents suggest. But carbohydrates also contain nutrients that can be difficult to get from other food sources, such as fiber, vitamins and minerals. Carbohydrates help give your body the energy it needs to survive.

These nutrients can be hard to find in no carb diet plans. Some of these plans frown on some beans or vegetables like green peas because they contain some carbohydrates. This is in addition to the huge list of foods banned on a no carb diet. Basically, the only foods left to eat are eggs, meat, parsley, chives, radishes, celery, cucumbers and alfalfa sprouts. This is not a well-balanced diet and eventually you will get sick because you are not getting the nutrients your body craves.

Problems with Crash Diet

The no carb diet is considered to be a crash diet or a severely restricted diet. Celebrities tend to go on crash diets right before big publicity events. They manage to lose a few pounds quickly only because their starving body first gets rids of all excess water and then starts cannibalizing muscles. In dieting, you want to lose the fat but keep as many as your muscles as possible. When you have to stop the diet, you gain the weight back and often extra weight, too.

Another big problem with crash diets is that you tend to get very, very hungry. This is because your body is starved for nutrients it needs from a well-balanced diet that includes some carbohydrates and some fats.

Better Carb Choices

Remember all the fuss about unsaturated fats being better for you than saturated fats? That’s the same with carbohydrates – some of them are much better for you than others. Avoid highly processed foods with bleached flour or tons of additives. Cut back on very sweet treats. You don’t have to cut them completely out, but you need to cut back.

The best carbohydrates are made with whole grains, fresh fruits or fresh vegetables. Choose brown rice instead of white rice. Eat whole grain pasta, cereals and breads instead of processed “white” products.

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