Why Are Carbs So Important?

Ask almost anyone what they need to do to lose a few kilograms and they’ll probably say: “Cut back on the carbs!” Health-conscious diners order bunless hamburgers, skip the baked potato side dish and send the bread basket back to the kitchen, or don’t and feel guilty about it…

Now as a weight loss strategy, cutting carbs (while reducing the total number of calories) clearly works pretty well for some people (still very unhealthy), but most of us, in fact – every single one of us require some level of carbohydrates to function at our best over the long term! Sure we can cut carbs temporarily if we need to lose weight quickly BUT for most of us, keeping carbs too low for too long can have bad consequences, especially for those of us who work out regularly! Restricting your carb intake too drastically can lead to muscle loss and we don’t want that!

When we think about building muscle, we usually think of PROTEIN, right?

Now, keep in mind that if you lower your carb intake, it will affect your muscle mass even if protein remained constant. Girls, in other words even if you’re drinking protein shakes and eating high protein meals frequently throughout the day, you could be losing muscle if you aren’t getting enough carbs. Yes, read that again! When you get enough carbs to meet your needs, you replenish muscle glycogen and create an anabolic (building-up) hormonal environment. You get STRONG and that’s good, that’s what we want!

Conversely, when you don’t eat enough carbohydrates, muscle glycogen is depleted and a catabolic (breaking-down) hormonal environment is created, which means more protein breakdown and less protein synthesis. This means slower muscle growth or even MUSCLE LOSS!

Most of us will LOOK, FEEL, and PERFORM our best when we balance a reasonable amount of lean protein, quality carbs, and healthy fats.

Your individual carb requirements depend on your:

GOALS | GENETICS | CARB SOURCE | ACTIVITY LEVEL

We are all unique! KEEP IT SIMPLE, and don’t overly restrict!

Much love, Lei x

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