Poor carbs. They have been so vilified in popular culture that people are scared of even being around them in fear of gaining weight. Not only does this exemplify the outrageousness of the diet culture but also our skewed perception of nutrition in general.
Let’s just set the record straight. Carbs are good! When we eat carbohydrates they break down to glucose in our bodies. This gives us energy to do all the things we love. Our brain REALLY loves carbohydrates because it needs glucose to function. Since our bodies are amazingly adaptable, we are able to go without carbohydrates and begin converting fat and protein to glucose as an energy source. While our bodies are able to function without carbohydrates it’s not our ideal method of survival. And that’s exactly what our body does when carbs go missing. Survival mode. Your body would do the same thing if you were actually starving. Kind of scary, right?
There are always some rare cases but for the majority of the population, carbs are just what our bodies need! Part of the problem may be that not everyone understands where carbs come from. Carbohydrates are in grains, fruits, vegetables, beans, dairy, and sweeteners like sugar. So not only does that include bread, candy and pastries but also your greek yogurt, apples, sweet potatoes, squash, hummus and more! So many delicious foods!
If we severely restrict or cut out an entire macronutrient from our meals we’re likely going to be lacking in calories, vitamins, minerals and fiber which will lead to more problems down the road. Plus, restricting anything is going to make you want it all that much more. Why not just let yourself have and enjoy a bowl of pasta or garlic bread or delicious, home made lasagna without panicking or feeling guilty? I promise life is so much more enjoyable when we’re not worried about which foods have carbs, whether they’re healthy or not and if we should be eating them. If it’s food, eat it! Because when we stop caring so much about being perfectly thin and “healthy” we have more time to focus on things that matter. We’ll never be satisfied trying to find our worth in our weight or appearance, so maybe we can stop being afraid of food and start enjoying it again!