Dietary Advice – Carbs do we need them?

Manchester Personal Trainer Ollie Lawrence says the simple answer is yes, carbs are the main body’s source of energy, so we do need them as the body needs energy. As human beings we need more balanced healthier diets that contain all food groups.

You will hear everybody talking about cutting carbohydrates out of their diet for losing weight, this is not the right way to do it and here at Ollie Lawrence Personal Trainer Manchester we explain that weight loss is all about what time of day we eat certain foods compared to the type of food group.


Now for the science..

There are only 3 food groups and everything you eat fall into these 3 categories. These good groups are Carbohydrates, fats and protein… a lot of people think that sugar is a food group on it’s own, however sugar is a carbohydrate along with starch and fibre. Sugars are the most harmful carbs to take on board when looking to lose weight, not only will you gain weight when taking on excess sugar but you will also have problems with your body’s insulin levels spiking and causing more serious problems with blood sugar levels and furthermore in serious cases, diabetes.

Carbs are the body’s first source of energy, (hence carb loading for many athletes in their diets before an event/competition) and the body will burn up carbohydrate stores in the body as energy before any of the other 2 food groups. In the average human being their is about 72 hours worth of carbs stored to covert to energy, so therefore if you didn’t eat anything for 72 hours and just trained and kept going your body would just burn all of your carbs stores.

Next your body uses Fats as a source of energy, again in the average human being there is around 24 hours worth of fats for your body to burn before your body touches their protein stores. Essentially if you didn’t touch a thing to eat for 4 days your body would burn all of your body’s excess carbohydrates store and furthermore your fats stores and convert them to energy to keep your body and internal organs working.

So the science behind people saying cut out all carbs and you’ll lose weight is that when you do that, you now know that after 72 hours of not eating carbs, your body would of converted them all to energy. Furthermore you also know after that initial 72 hours without any carbs that your body will automatically start using up fat stores to convert to energy and keep you alive. Thus you will then lose fat as your body is converting it for energy to keep you alive.

As previously stated carbohydrates are the body’s first source of energy and they are converted to keep you alive and all of your internal organs working. Any excess carbs are stored as fat on the body and not converted as energy, especially late at night! This is the most common problem with people in modern life, carbs are in more or less everything you eat including vegetables, fruits and eggs. The only way you could eat a ‘carb’ free diet is to only eat meat (protein) and drink water.

Manchester Personal Trainer

If you lead a lifestyle like most, where your working in the day and sleeping at night, then your body will need carbs as a source of energy first thing in the morning.

As you go throughout the day your body is converting everything you eat to energy or storing food as fat (if your body doesn’t need it). Your body naturally becomes more tired towards night time as your body wants to shut down and go to sleep as it’s tired from the days activities. If you eat carbohydrates late at night and your body doesn’t need them (it’s ready to shut down and doesn’t want energy) it won’t convert them to energy, but store them as fat.

So eating carbs such as biscuits, chocolates, alcohol and high sugary deserts late at night is a big no no , however many people seem to make these mistakes. A better option for dinner/tea would be protein (meat) with green (alkaline) vegetables. Filling up on meat and green vegetables is ideal rather than eating rice or pasta late at night where your body will store those foods as fat as they are excess carbs.

Remember you are what you eat!

Ollie Lawrence
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