Do you know the difference between good and bad carbs? If you don’t then this is the right article for you to read.
“Carbs are the devil!” Sounds familiar? Don’t worry, all of us have been subjected to this at some point, and blindly followed the “no carb” rule before finding out the truth. We chatted with Geetali Nagpal, Registered Dietician with a Master’s Degree in Nutrition and Dietetics from Pune University and a Certified Diabetes Educator (under the International Diabetes Federation) to understand the real truth- carbs are our friends.
Carbohydrates are essential to our nutrition, and being the primary energy source they are essential to the bodybuilding process. As you read in this (link this to the myths about nutrition article) article, carbohydrates trigger the release of insulin, a hormone which stimulates the uptake of amino acids from proteins into the muscle cells. This is what stimulates maximum recovery and muscle building immediately after a workout. So without carbs, your muscles won’t get the energy to grow!
The problem is that carbs are labelled as evil because of the wrong carbs that we consume. Eating cake, pizza, pasta, toast etc is what causes harm. These lead to nutrient deficiencies, low energy and poor performance. What one needs are good carbs.
Good carbohydrates or Complex Carbohydrates are unprocessed and contain natural fibre found in food whereas bad carbohydrates are processed or refined, where the fibre has been partially or completely removed. Good carbohydrates provide slow sustained release of energy while bad carbohydrates give sudden peaks in the blood sugar and insulin levels (which is also one of the factors leading to obesity, and insulin resistance.)
Leaving out such an important macronutrient from your diet is not the solution to building the body of your dreams. Leaving out carbs would result in weakness, dizziness, fatigue, nausea and so much more. Instead, practice portion control and measure your macros. Also, opt for the good carbs, and stay away from the bad ones. Here are some examples to help you out.
- Whole Cereals like Whole Wheat, Oats
- Millets like Bajra, Jowar, Ragi
- Beans and legumes
- High fibre fruits like Apple/Guava/Figs/Pear
- Sprouted Pulses and legumes
- Aerated Drinks/Flavored carbonated beverages
- Refined Table sugar
- Refined Wheat Flour/Refined Corn flour/Processed Potato based products like White Pasta/Tortilla/Corn flakes/Potato chips
- Refined Bakery products like White Bread/ Biscuits/Khari/Toast
In order to maintain a healthy diet, one must understand the difference between good and bad carbs. Once we know the difference, it will be easy to sustain a healthy lifestyle without compromising on the diet.