Eating low carbs for weight loss is getting very popular. However, carbs are very important and, in fact, crucial for health and weight loss. The right types of carbohydrates, the quality of foods matters the most.
Excessive intake of carbohydrates creates a diet disaster that typically results in weight gain and health issues. Excess carbohydrate intake triggers insulin and that, in turn, stores fat in your body. More importantly, it also prevents your body from burning fat that is already stored.
The Right And Wrong In Carbohydrates
When insulin is constantly at elevated levels, because of a metabolic disorder or chronic ingestion of nutritionally empty dietary carbohydrates, the body stores fat and blocks fat from being used as energy. This metabolic situation prevents weight loss, promotes weight gain, and contributes to fatigue and low energy levels.
Reducing nutritionally empty carbohydrates, such as sugar, processed junk foods, and white flour products, will reduce both calories and carbohydrates and may provide health benefits that go beyond weight loss.
Vegetables are complex carbohydrates that burn slow and don’t spike your blood sugar. These slow carbs or low-starch carbs comes from plant foods such as broccoli, eggplant, green beans, onions, lettuce, red bell peppers, onions, mushrooms, and asparagus.
Also, excess starchy “slow” foods such as brown rice, lentils, or sweet potatoes are metabolized slowly. All these veggies and foods come loaded with nutrients, fiber, and a broad array of phytochemicals.
Broccoli and potato chips are carbohydrates, but the body metabolizes both in vastly different ways. Even healthy carbohydrates such as oats, quinoa, or brown rice are typically eaten in excess. The problem begins when there’s excess intake of starchy carbohydrates as well as refined carbohydrates such as crackers, cookies, candy, bagels, bread, and processed or packaged foods.
Protein is an important nutrient for weight loss and a leaner body. Protein and healthy fat combined with reduced carbohydrate intake, boosts metabolism, reduces appetite, stops hunger and cravings, and changes several weight-regulating hormones.
Hormones such as CCK which is a natural appetite suppressant and protein reduces levels of the hunger hormone ghrelin. Protein combined with the right quality carbohydrates and healthy fat, will transform your body and health. When you try to lose weight, if there is no adequate amount of protein in the diet, your body will lose both muscle and fat. It’s essential to hold on to muscle as it burns fat – the more muscle you have, the higher your metabolism.
Reduce excess carbs intake and add more protein to every meal to lose weight.
9 Ways To Add More Protein To Your Diet
1. Eat Greek Yogurt
Greek yogurt has half the calories and twice the protein of traditional yogurt, thus making it a great choice.
2. Add Protein Powder
If you add plain or flavored protein powder to other foods – like oatmeal or smoothies, you’ll get the protein you need to keep you hunger free.
3. Stock Up On Cottage Cheese
Cottage cheese is another rich source of protein. In fact, 1 cup contains a whopping 28 grams. Mix in low-sugar fruit such as berries and sprinkle some almonds or chia seeds on top, and you are good to go!
4. Consume Lean Meat
Chicken, turkey and other lean meats are a great way to get more protein.
5. Start Your Day With Eggs
Eggs, like lean meat and dairy, are an excellent source of protein. Research shows just 2 eggs in the morning stops hunger and cravings for hours.
6. Add Protein To Salad
There are multiple ways to up the protein content of any salad. Add sunflower seeds, nuts, garbanzo beans or a sliced hard-boiled egg/chicken which are good sources of protein.
7. Snack On Nuts
Nuts and seeds are a great source of protein and healthy fat that will help stop cravings by keeping blood sugar balanced. Find ways to incorporate nuts into your snacks and meals.
8. Eat Fish
Fish is very high in protein and healthy fat. Wild-caught fish can be an extremely healthy addition to your diet – and many of us don’t eat enough. Bake it, broil it or grill it.
9. Add Plant-Based Protein Sources
Though many people don’t realize it, plants and veggies can be a great source or protein. Beans, brown rice, broccoli, artichokes, onions, asparagus and spinach.