Why Carbs Aren't As Bad As You May Think
By Stepy Kamei
In the quest for finding out the best tips and tricks for improving your overall health and well-being, there are unfortunately more than a few myths and misconceptions along the way. Unfortunately, one of the more common misconceptions lies in how people view carbohydrates. In the past decade or two, many fad diet trends have decried carbs as being inherently bad for you. Carbs quickly became a thing to be counted obsessively, and cut from a person's diet as much as possible. However, nutritionists and other health experts quickly started speaking out about this potentially dangerous misunderstanding. Read on to learn more about why so many of us still think carbs are unhealthy -- and why this really isn't necessarily true at all.
What's the Deal With Carbohydrates Anyway?
If you're still struggling to part ways with the idea that carbs are bad for you, keep this one thing in mind: carbohydrates occur naturally in many whole, unprocessed foods. Generally speaking, if it appears naturally, it's a vital nutrient. In fact, carbohydrates are known as a macronutrient, along with protein and fat. These three macronutrients are incredibly vital and even downright necessary for the body to be able to function properly.
Carbs can be found in three main sources: sugars (such as the sugars found in apples), starches (pasta, potatoes, bread), and dietary fiber. Generally speaking, foods that we consider carb-heavy often contain all three of these types of carbohydrates.
Breaking Down the Myths
So, where did everyone start making negative assumptions about carbs from? Essentially, it comes down to a few people misunderstanding when they learn the process carbs go through during digestion. First, carbs produce insulin upon being digested. This insulin provides glucose for the body to convert into energy. Most of the time, there's extra glucose, which is normally stored in the liver as glycogen. However, the liver usually can't store all this glycogen, so it gets converted into into fat that's stored. This is when people assume that carbs equate to excess fat, and that's why carbs quickly experienced a poor reputation.
The important thing to keep in mind is that fat is constantly fluctuating between being stored and being burned up for fuel. As long as you are consuming healthy and well-balanced meals, and living an active lifestyle, carbs shouldn't be literally weighing you down.
How to Benefit from Carbs
Remember to eat as many whole unprocessed foods as you can to achieve the most nutritional value with the least negative effects to your health. Consult with a nutritionists if you would like further guidance about your diet, and how carbs fit into it.
To learn more about your health, wellness and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Carlsbad, Calif.