Are carbs bad for you?

Are carbs bad for you?

Are carbs bad for you?

Richard Kelly 17th June 2019

When I was a child fat was the devil. Okay, that wasn’t exactly the phrase used, but avoiding fat was the aim at every meal; skimmed or semi-skimmed milk, no more than two eggs a week, avoiding red meat, cutting off fat from any cuts of meat, margarine over butter, and low fat yoghurt. I think everyone had the same experience of food in the 80s and 90s. Then came Atkins. And carbs were bad. Then came paleo. And carbs were bad.Now comes keto. And carbs are bad.  Other information came out in that period too. We learned that the research condemning fats was commissioned by Coca-cola, and we learned that on a higher fat diet levels of concentration increase. We learned that red meat had benefits for testosterone levels, and organ meats provided essential vitamins and minerals. Research showed that high consumption of eggs is not harmful and that margarine contains trans-fats, which are far more harmful than natural fats ever could be. Not only that but we discovered that low fat foods were actually high in sugars, as in order to stabilise the new foods they had to use sugar to replace the fats.  Lower carbs have also been linked to benefitting conditions such as diabetes and Alzheimer’s, and diets such as the ketogenetic have seen inflammation, joint and digestive issues to clear up.  Faced with this information it would seem that on face value carbs are, indeed, bad.  But that statement is actually false. Carbs are simply misunderstood. Carbohydrates provide your body with a more intensive fuel to burn, whilst fats provide a lower powered fuel. Day to day fats are far more effective therefore for most people, especially if you are an office worker, whilst carbs are great for anyone who does intensive activities, such as long distance running or tennis, or has a manual job.  And because many jobs have become increasingly sedentary it means that most of the fuel we should seek is from fats, not carbs. But if you are doing anything intensive then carbs are a better fuel for your body. Avoiding them, therefore, is contingent on what you are doing. 

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