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Do Low Carb Diets Really Work?

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Ahh Dr. Atkins.... I think we all remember or are familiar with the Atkins diet. Dr. Atkins started it all. From the Atkins diet, to keto, to the mediterranean diet, low carb diets have cycled in and out of popularity, which adds to the confusion of what we should all be doing with our eating habits. 

In our experience, fad dieting such as these are not great for most people long term. They can be beneficial to experiment for a week or two as the diets do have their benefits, however many of them aren't sustainable long term (or worth it). In fact, some of them are actually dangerous to practice for too long. 

Part of the issue with these fad diets is that they provide you with fast initial results, which makes you believe that they are effective. 

Take the Adkins or any low carb diet for example. The reason why almost everyone experiences fast weight loss within the first 1-2 weeks is due in large part do a reduction of water weight. 

Our muscles are made up of roughly 75% of water. When you significantly reduce or remove carbohydrates from your diet, your glycogen levels (which binds water to your muscles and liver) significantly drop. When glycogen goes down, so does water. 

When it comes to nutrition, a consistent approach is always best. Finding out the appropriate amount of carbohydrates for you on a daily basis, and aiming to hit that target consistently is not only the best long term approach, it's the most enjoyable. Let's face it.. carbs taste good, and they are also our primary source of energy. If you feel weak or more tired than usual during your workouts, odds are you haven't had enough carbs, or you've had poor sources of carbs up to that point. 

The carbs I'm referring to here are processed carbs with refined sugars. These tend to also be high in fat, are easy to overeat, and show an increased risk of weight gain and type 2 diabetes. 

What kind of carbs should we be looking for?

Carbs that are high in fiber; they are digested slowly and make you feel fuller longer. Some great examples are:

Potatoes, rice, whole grain bread, quinoa

I hope you found this helpful, and if you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you. 

I hope you have a great day!



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