Why A Low Carb Diet Is Probably The Best Option To Lose Weight

Posted by Tiffany Weekes
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I believe and have written that a number of diets can be healthy and effective for weight loss.  In fact, I think the most important aspect of a diet is your relationship with foo,d and picking a healthy diet that fits you as an individual.  However, personal preferences aside, a low carb diet is probably the best way I know to lose those unwanted pounds.


First, it Just Works

Everyone on a diet is out to lose fat, but everyone will lose some muscle too.  Even the 250 pound bodybuilder that goes to gym twice a day, weighs every ounce of food he eats, will lose muscle cutting down for a contest.  So, it’s not a matter if you’ll lose muscle dieting, it’s a matter of how much.  Low carb diets are muscle sparing.  The bodybuilder is on a modified low carb diet designed to complement his training.


One pitfall of low fat diets is the risk and tendency to cut out proteins too, since the two are often found together.  Diets without sufficient protein will result in a high percentage of muscle loss.


We also need to put this into context of our modern food supply.  If we were having this discussion 150 years ago, it would be very different.  In 1860, each person in the US ate about 25 pounds of sugar, by 2000, we ate over 100 pounds per year (new estimates by USDA are saying around 90 pounds, but still).  There are 454 grams in a pound, so in 1840, they ate about 31 grams of sugar per day.  Even with the more conservative 90 pounds, we at 112 grams per day in 2000… heck, a 24 oz pop has 80 grams.


Low Carb Diets Work Well for 2 Main Reasons

Sugar is everywhere, and even though fat has more than twice the calories per gram, it’s much easier to consume 100 calories from carbs than it is from fat.  Just one 12 ounce pop… BAM… 143 calories.  High fructose corn syrup has made it cheap for manufacturers to sweeten our food, and they know we love it.  All that low-fat, no-fat food is packed with carbs.


Anyone who’s ever been on a low carb diet will tell you just how ubiquitous carbs are.  You will discover carbs in places you never thought they’d be, here’s a short list of high carb foods.


The second reason is that a calorie is not a calorie, like some would like us to believe.  “Don’t you know it’s just calorie in – calorie out?”  Nothing about the body is that simple.  Insulin and the myriad of chemical processes that follow suite, do much more than just manage blood sugar levels.  These processes control cholesterol production and breakdown.  They orchestrate which fuels will be burnt and at what rate.  When sugar is not available, you will eventually enter a state of ketosis, where fat is used in place of stored glycogen.


A proper low carb diet will include a lot of veggies, a variety of protein source, a moderate amount of fat and select fruits.  Eating just string cheese and beef jerky won’t cut it.


Nutritional supplements can also be a big help.  Coconut oil is a healthy fat source and great for cooking.  Green tea extract, green coffee bean extract, garcinia cambogia, alpha lipoic acid, or a blend like Synedrex may help the weight come off a bit faster.


After You Hit Your Goal

For most people, the low carb diet is not a lifestyle choice.  As you start to reintroduce carbs back into your life, make sure you don’t just fall back into old habits.  Keeping processed foods to a minimum and doing your best to eliminate refined sugars is always a great idea.


The key to keeping the weight off is changing our relationship with food.  We really are what we eat… good or bad.


Tom Hines is the Co-Founder of NutritionGeeks.com, a retired USAPL powerlifter, a volunteer youth wrestling coach, the father of 3 amazing boys, and interested in all things health.




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