Kickin’ It with Carbs! : Nutritiongal Volume 7

Hello Everyone! Welcome to Volume 7 of Nutritiongal’s bimonthly newsletter.  Today we are going to talk carbs!

Ladies and gentlemen carbohydrates are your friends! Learn to love them. Learn to make them work for you so you can appreciate all the wonderful nutritious benefits carbs have to offer.  Kick the carb counting to the curb and stop the insanity!  I’m not saying we should turn into Pillsbury Dough boys/girls and down entire loaves of bread.  Nor am I saying to eat twigs and berries.  Maybe our nomadic ancestors did but there are so many more options available to us. I’m just sayin’…

What are carbohydrates anyway and what is all the the fuss about?  Carbohydrates are macro nutrients composed of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen.  Carbohydrates supply the body with glucose that fuels every cell in the body.

Carbohydrates are basically everything that is neither meat, dairy nor fat.  They are not just grains and fruit. Vegetables are also considered carbohydrates even though their carbohydrate content is generally lower than most other carb-laden foods.

When you don’t eat enough carbohydrates the body releases the stress hormone, cortisol, which can lead to other complications if this situation remains for a prolonged period of time.  The initial weight loss from eating too few carbs, which is mostly water, comes back the minute you eat a piece of bread.  At the same time consuming too many refined carbs, such as white bread and sugary substances causes the body to release too much insulin, creating high blood sugar, insulin resistance and type II diabetes in advanced cases – if this eating style is maintained for some time.

So how many cabs should we consume?  There is no right answer because it really depends on the individual (sex, metabolism, activity level and genes).  Rather than counting carbs what about eating carbs with a lower glycemic load.  The glycemic load measures how much your blood sugar raises when you consume a particular carbohydrate.  The glycemic index measures the amount of sugar in a particular food.  While glycemic index can be somewhat helpful it is the glycemic load which is more relevant. For example a carrot and orange juice have similar glycemic indexes but the glycemic load of a carrot is significantly lower than that of juice.  The fiber and natural sugars in the carrot slow down the release of sugar into the bloodstream, allowing the blood sugar to remain steady and not drop as drastically as if you visited Dillon’s candy shop.  I mean let’s get real here.  Who ever got diabetes from eating carrots?  I don’t see many rabbits on insulin!

Check out the glycemic loads of some popular foods below.

I could go on and on but perhaps this is all I will say about carbs for now.  Enjoy your whole grains, fruits and veggies and tell me what you think!

Ciao for now!


The Nutritiongal

Find your bliss. Find your balance


“I am currently enrolled at the Integrative Institute of Nutrition and will graduate as a certified health counselor in 2010. Fire the diet police and take back your health!”


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