Monday, April 27, 2015
A low carb diet can help you lose weight. But if you go on the Atkins Diet or the South Beach Diet, or any low carb diet, your friends and family might think you're doing something dangerous. Go on a Weight Watchers Diet and it doesn't bother anybody. Why? Because low carb diets are unfamiliar. Read this and you can put their minds at ease.
WHEN YOU EAT CARBOHYDRATES (carbs), your body releases ...insulin into your blood stream. The insulin tells your cells what to do. It tells most cells to absorb the sugar out of the blood and tells your fat cells not to release any fat to burn (because there are carbs already in the blood to burn).
One of insulin's jobs is to take sugar out of the blood — the sooner the better, because sugar in the blood damages the body. The reason diabetics have such bad health problems (blindness, circulation problems, etc.) is because of the damage sugar does when the person can't make enough insulin.
When you eat something with a lot of sugar in it, the body kind of panics and usually overdoes it. Too much insulin is released to mop up the sugar. It takes all the sugar out of your blood. Then your blood sugar is too low, so you crave more sweets.
So insulin saved the day, keeping that sugar from damaging your body, but in the process, it makes your body store fat and prevents you from burning fat.
A low carb diet, like the Atkins or South Beach Diet or Protein Power all vary in how much to limit carbs, but the rough average is thirty carbs a day. At that level, you don't put very much insulin into your system, so your body burns any fat you eat as fuel, and if you need more, your fat cells freely release fat into your blood stream to be burned as fuel.
But when you eat a large amount of carbs — a hundred grams, two hundred grams, or more (most Westerners get about 300 grams a day) — your body releases insulin in huge amounts, which makes it almost impossible to burn fat. And makes it really easy to gain weight. Some people don't gain weight, of course, even though they eat lots of carbs, and we'll get to that in a minute. But first understand this basic process. This is why people lose weight so easily and quickly when they cut carbs: Because carbs increase insulin, which leads to storing fat and preventing fat from being burned.