You may or may not have heard the buzz around healthy low carb eating these days. Although many people believe that the Atkins diet was discredited (actually by members of the high-carb food industry who had a lot to lose), in fact many people still use healthy low carb eating as an effective means of weight loss without going into semi-starvation mode. Also diabetics might be said to have led the way in low carbohydrate eating as it is carbohydrate which their bodies can’t deal with. They really do have a major incentive to adopt healthy low carb eating as diabetic complications are very serious and a serious wake-up call that some work needs to be done on the food they eat. A low carb diet can be life changing for diabetics.
Why healthy low carb eating is so good.
The basis of low carb diets is about insulin secretion by the pancreas. Insulin is released into the bloodstream whenever carbs are ingested, in the form of sugar or starchy foods. Even vegetables contain carbs (although green leafy vegetables tend to have the lowest carb content and are therefore included on most low carb diets). Insulin enables the energy from carbohydrate to be stored – unfortunately as fat. Insulin is the engine of fat storage, and without excess insulin, body fat can be lost as the body releases the contents of its fat cells to be used as fuel. Ergo most low-carb diets encourage fat burning and are ketogenic. Ketones are produced as a bi-product of fat burning and the body learns to use this as its primary fuel rather than glucose.
Do you count calories with healthy low carb eating?
The good news as far as this form of diet is concerned, is that, within reason, calories don’t count. It’s not about calories in versus calories expended. Most healthy low carb eating plans encourage the consumption of plenty of healthy fat, defined as “pure” fats, such as olive oil, butter, virgin coconut oil, even lard. Thus the low-carb diet can be a tasty one which encourages feelings of satiety (fullness) as much of the taste of food comes from fat and it makes you feel satisfied.