Why Carbs Aren’t the Enemy

Dry beans in jars represent healthy carbohydrates for weight loss and maintenance. Surgical Association of Mobile logo at top right.

You have probably tried to cut out carbs from your diet in an attempt to lose weight. And who can blame you? We’ve become anti-carb as a result of misinformation and overconsumption. The truth is too much of anything is not good for you, and that rule goes for carbs as well. Furthermore, there are good carbs just as there are bad ones, and today we will tell you how to know which is which.

Good Carbs vs. Bad Carbs

 Now that we have your attention, let’s talk whole versus refined carbs. Whole, or simple carbs are those that occur naturally in food. You’ll find whole carbs in minimally or unprocessed foods such as vegetables, whole grains, and beans.

On the other hand there are refined carbs. These are a result of processing that alters the composition of the carb and over-processing food often results in the stripping of its nutrients. Complex carbs are found in refined grains such as white bread and pastries or sugary beverages.

Whole carbs can be healthy and nutritious if consumed in moderation – they can even provide a good source of fiber. These are the carbs you should be incorporating into your diet. Refined carbs, on the other hand, are a different story. Refined carbs can cause spikes in your blood sugar and are linked to diabetes. Because they are digested quickly, they cause blood sugar swings and can lead to overeating and, eventually, obesity.

Carbs Or No Carbs?

Low-carb diets have been very popular and many people have lost weight as a result. However, low-carb diets ignore that some carbs can be perfectly healthy and should not be blamed for weight gain. A well-balanced diet that avoids processed foods is key to losing or maintaining weight. Calorie deficits and regular exercise are more important than completely eradicating carbs. Getting rid of carbs as your only weight loss tactic is unsustainable and can lead to unhealthy habits. Instead, avoid refined carbs, read the labels on your food, and try to get a half hour or more of exercise in each day.

The Bottom Line

Some may benefit from a low carb diet, but if you really want sustainability, you should focus on maintaining a well-balanced diet – integrating whole, simple carbs and avoiding refined carbs. Moderation is key. Nothing is good in excess.

If you would like to talk to a bariatric surgeon about what your diet should look like, give us a call today. With nearly 50 years of experience, SAMPA pride ourselves in providing the best care possible.

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Mobile, AL 36607

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