How well do you know the truth about carbohydrates?

I need to cut carbs to lose weight.
There’s little doubt that cutting carbs will help you to lose weight, particularly if you cut down on energy-dense nutrient-poor carbs. But this isn’t the only way to lose weight and research shows that there is no long term difference between higher and lower carb diets when it comes to weight loss, as long as you reduce kilojoule intake and can stick to the diet.

I shouldn’t eat carbs after 5pm
The way our body processes carbs doesn’t magically change once the sun goes down. While cutting carbs at dinner will cut down on your kilojoule intake (as long as you don’t replace them with more fat or protein) and this in turn can help with weight loss, it’s eating less, not specifically eating less carbs that helps you to lose weight.

A low carb diet is better for my health
All carbs are not equal when it comes to our health. There are definitely some carbs we can all do without such as highly processed grains and added sugars. But nutrient-dense lower glycemic index carbs such as vegetables, fruits, legumes and minimally processed wholegrains have many health benefits, including a reduced risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes and cancer, and should be included in your daily diet. In fact low carb diets, particularly when high in animal foods, are associated with higher risk of mortality.

Carbs cause type 2 diabetes
While carbs break down to glucose in the body and raise blood glucose levels they are not the cause of type 2 diabetes. In fact insulin resistance, the underlying problem in type 2 diabetes, is made worse by low carb diets high in saturated fat and animal protein, and improved with a plant-based diet including wholegrains and legumes.

For more information about carbohydrates speak to your GP or a qualified dietician.

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