There is evidence that that consuming a diet high in refined carbohydrates can increase a person's risk of heart disease.
"The high levels of sugar raise insulin levels and after a few hours cause blood sugar to crash, which can make many people crave more processed carbs," says David Ludwig, MD, PhD, director or the New Balance Foundation Obesity Prevention Center at Boston's Children's Hospital. "The vicious cycle, over time, increases the risk of obesity, heart disease, and diabetes." *
By focusing on replacing refined starches with vegetables, fruits, and beans you can make a healthy difference for your heart.
On my journey to a healthy lifestyle, I have read many books on weight loss. The one common thread is the reduction or, even more drastically, the elimination of all starchy, sugary carbs. I am an admitted carb addict who on my hunt for the perfect eating plan has neglected to follow this simple rule. The problem for me with carbs is once I start eating them, even good for me carbs, I cannot seem to stop.
So for the next 3 weeks, until Easter, I am going virtually carb free. This means avoiding All types of sugar and simple carbohydrates, potatoes, rice, wheat, flour and corn. I will be eating certain veggies, but no grains or fruits. This is Phase 1.
My eating plan consists of lean protein, very low carb and no sugar veggies, some dairy, nuts, and limited condiments. Yes, it is Very restrictive! Yes, it is what I need to kick my metabolism and fat burning in gear!
This plan is different from any other plan I have ever tried. It is medically supervised with weekly weigh-ins (on Wednesdays) and food diary review. It is a disciplined plan that ensures that I will lose weight while getting rid of my pesky cravings.
Scientific fact: If you do not eat any carbohydrates or sugar at all, in 4 days you will be free from craving them. But for 4 days you must avoid All sugar and carbs.
Can I do it? Will I fight? I have to make a choice...and I choose to lose weight to make a healthier person. Of course looking better is a wonderful motivator too!
As I go through the different Phases of this plan on into Maintenance I will be adding in new foods. For now, for 3 weeks, this is my eating plan.
Light daily exercise, such as walking for 30 minutes each day are encouraged. I will also be adding 2 strength training days.
I know some of you out there will think this eating plan is a bit of deprivation, but so far it is working for me.
What do you think? Would you be willing to give up carbs? Or are you already following a similar plan?
*From Oprah Magazine, February 2014