Hi everyone! Today I want to talk about the health benefits of a low carb diet. I have personally experienced clearer skin, more energy, suppressed appetite, and although I’m not sure I have lost actual pounds, my body is changing.
Low carb has been studied and it is well documented that their effectiveness is multi-faceted. Of course, thousands of people who have lost a lot of weight and were able to keep it off makes a low carb eating plan somewhat attractive, especially since it’s not your typical fad diet, but an actual lifestyle change.
Harvard completed a study that explored just how impressive the results of a low carb diet can be for weight loss, in comparison to a low fat diet that people tend to rely on for all of their weight loss needs.By now, most people are aware how excellent low carb diets can be for rapid weight loss, but do they offer any other health benefits? They do and that is what makes a low carbohydrate diet such an attractive option when deciding what path to follow.
The European Journal of Clinical Nutrition explains what other effects a low carb diet has on the human body. Medical professionals have been using it since the 20’s to help epilepsy sufferers reduce their symptoms. It some cases, the low carb diet has rendered the use of medication unnecessary.
There have also been strides made in proving that a low carb diet can be used as a therapeutic tool for a number of other conditions. These include polycystic ovary syndrome, lowering the risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, a number of strains of cancer, and even acne.
The point of the study was to determine whether the preconceived notions surrounding ketogenic diets have prevented doctors from relying on them as a therapeutic method.
The Mayo Clinic has also explored the other effects that re seen when on a low carb diet. While citing many of the same issues listed by the EJCN, the Mayo Clinic has added cholesterol level and high blood pressure to the list of conditions a low carb diet can help with.
There are variations on what is considered a low carb diet. Anything from 20 grams to 150 grams of carbohydrates a day can be considered low carb. 150 grams will not kick start ketosis (if that is your goal). To burn fat stores, you will need to eat less than 50 grams of carbohydrates per day, although everyone’s threshold is different.
Dr. Judith Wylie-Rosett led a study that makes mention of The American Diabetes Association belief that a low carbohydrate, low fat diet can be used to achieve improvement in both weight and metabolism, pointing to the Mediterranean diet as evidence.
This is an interesting point because it’s well documented that the residents of countries in the Mediterranean have higher life expectancies and they do eat carbs. Their carb intake is much lower, however, than the typical American diet or say the United Kingdom.
The Mayo Clinic breaks down the Mediterranean diet which hinges on eating plant based foods, nuts, whole grains and legumes. Olive oils are used in place of butter, and herbs and spices replace salt. It is more common to eat white meats and leave red meat to the rare occasion. Meals are also spent with family and friends and consumed over a few hours.
There are a number of low carb diets you can follow. You can be as strict or as lenient as you want. It really depends on what your goals are. Do you want to lose weight? Maintain muscle? Reduce your risk of heart disease?
In addition, a low carb diet can serve as an appetite suppressant. This is one of the things I have experienced first hand. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition explored the reason why, concluding that the amount of protein in the diet could be the explanation.
Another similar study saw that participants on a diet that was high in protein and fat, but low in carbohydrates, didn’t have the same food cravings as participants did that were on a low fat, low calorie diet. Greatly reducing carbs and eliminating sugars can help regulate your blood sugar so that the appetite is naturally suppressed. It also can be helpful in eliminating out of control food cravings. I have also experienced this.
So there you have it. Those are just a few of the health benefits of a low carb diet. I know I feel better and have more energy.
Talk to you soon,