Cut Down On Carbs to Reduce Body Fat
Vegetable diet books
Even a modest reduction in consumption of carbohydrate-rich foods may
promote loss of deep belly fat. This could help reduce the risk of
developing Type 2 diabetes, stroke and coronary artery disease.
Excess visceral fat (intra-abdominal fat) raises the risk of these
According to Eurekalert:
“... [S]ubjects who consumed [a] moderately carb-restricted diet had 11
percent less deep abdominal fat than those who ate the standard diet ...
[S]ubjects on both diets lost weight. However, the moderately carb-restricted
diet promoted a 4 percent greater loss of total body fat”.
Eurekalert June 5, 2011
Dr. Mercola's Comments:
Many people are still seriously confused about what types of food to eat
to lose weight, and it's not really their fault. The conventional
nutritional dogma of the last decade has been pushing a low-fat or
fat-free diet on Americans, misleading them into thinking they've got to
cut out fat to lose weight.
As Americans cut fats from their diet (and also the protein that's often
abundant in full-fat foods), they replaced them with carbohydrates --
and not the good kind in vegetables. Partly as a result of Americans'
reliance on unhealthy carbs -- bagels, pasta, pretzels, rice, potatoes,
etc. -- a full two-thirds of the U.S. population is overweight or obese,
and nearly one in four is considered obese, not just overweight.
The idea that cutting carbs from your diet can lead to weight loss is
beginning to catch on though, and as the new study above points out,
even moderate reductions in your carb consumption can help you shed
Cutting Carbs, Not Fat, Helps Reduce Body Fat
Researchers from the University of Alabama at Birmingham revealed that
when 69 overweight people were given a diet with a modest reduction in
carbohydrates for eight weeks, they had 11 percent less deep abdominal
fat than those given a lower-fat diet. Further, during a second
eight-week period in which calories were reduced by 1,000 each day,
those on the lower-carb diet lost 4 percent more total body fat.
An important point is that the reduced-carb diet promoted the loss of
deep belly fat, also known as "visceral fat," even when no change in
weight was apparent.
Visceral fat is strongly linked with type 2 diabetes, heart disease,
stroke, and other chronic diseases. It is thought that visceral fat is
related to the release of proteins and hormones that can cause
inflammation, which in turn can damage arteries and enter your liver,
affecting how your body breaks down sugars and fats.
While it's often referred to as "belly fat" because it can cause a "beer
belly" or an apple-shaped body, you can have visceral fat even if you're
thin. So even if you aren't trying to lose weight, cutting unhealthy
carbs in your diet could have a positive impact on your levels of
visceral fat, and thereby potentially reduce your risk of chronic
Fructose: The Biggest Carb Culprit
People on low-carb diets lose weight in part because they get less
fructose, a type of sugar that can be made into body fat quickly.
Although fructose is naturally found in high levels in fruit, it is also
added to many processed foods, especially in the form of high-fructose
corn syrup. If your only source of fructose came from eating an apple or
orange a day, keeping your total grams of fructose to below 25 per day,
then it would not be an issue.
But what many completely fail to appreciate is that fructose is the
NUMBER ONE source of calories in the United States and the typical
person is consuming 75 grams of fructose each and every day. Because
fructose is so cheap it is used in virtually all processed foods. The
average person is consuming one-third of a pound of sugar every day,
which is five ounces or 150 grams, half of which is fructose. This is
300 percent more than the amount that will trigger biochemical havoc,
and this is the average -- many consume more than twice that amount.
Evidence is mounting that excess sugar, and fructose in particular, is
the primary factor in the obesity epidemic, so it's definitely a food
you want to avoid if you want to lose weight. Does this mean you need to
avoid fruit too? As you can see in this table, some fruits are very high
in fructose, so munching indiscriminately on the wrong ones could set
If you struggle with insulin resistance, which you would know by
measuring your fasting insulin level and seeing if it is over 5 OR if
you have any of the following conditions, you'll need to be particularly
careful about limiting your fructose intake to 15 grams per day or less.
•High blood pressure
These "Healthful" Carbs Should be Avoided Too
Many dieters snack on pretzels in lieu of potato chips and other salty
snacks, believing them to be healthier alternatives. But eating pretzels
is akin to dipping a spoon straight into a bowl of sugar, as that's
precisely the way your body responds to this refined carbohydrate snack.
Don't be fooled by the fact that they're "fat-free" – remember it's the
carbs that are the culprit.
Your body prefers the carbohydrates in vegetables rather than grains
because it slows the conversion to simple sugars like glucose, and
decreases your insulin level. Grain carbohydrates, like those in
pretzels, will increase your insulin resistance and interfere with your
ability to burn fat -- which is the last thing you want if you're trying
to lose weight.
Even cereals, whether high-fiber, whole-grain or not, are not a food you
want to eat if you're concerned about your weight. If they contain
sugar, that will tend to increase your insulin levels even more … but
even "healthy" sugarless cereals are an oxymoron, since grains rapidly
break down to sugar in your body, stimulating insulin production and
encouraging weight gain.
Of course, increasing numbers of people are now aware that refined carbs
like white sugar and white bread may make you pack on the pounds. But
many are still being misled that "good" carbs like whole grains and
fruit won't. Remember, whether it's a whole grain, a sprouted grain or a
refined grain, ALL grains rapidly break down to sugar, which causes your
insulin resistance to increase and will make your weight problems worse.
This is NOT the case with vegetables, however. Vegetables will NOT
convert into sugar the way grains do, and most Americans need to eat far
more vegetables. Eating carbs in the form of vegetables may make your
carb intake higher, but will not be a hindrance to your health goals.
One caveat, corn and potatoes do not count as vegetables; they act much
more like grains as far as your body is concerned.
So What Should You Eat to Lose Weight?
Many people resist the idea of cutting grain and sugar from their diets,
wondering what else there is to eat if they avoid bread, potatoes,
pizza, baked goods and other unhealthy carbs.
The truth is, there is a wonderful variety of delicious foods available
that are not processed, full of fructose or based on refined white sugar
and flour. I've outlined many of them in my comprehensive nutrition
plan, and this is the place I recommend you start if you want to tweak
your diet to lose weight or just become healthier. This program will
take you from the beginner stage through intermediate and advanced,
allowing you to make healthy changes to your diet and lifestyle one step
at a time, at a pace that feels comfortable to you.
My program comes from decades of experience in which I have researched
extensively, conferred with my professional colleagues, and most
importantly, successfully treated tens of thousands of patients. Many
are struggling with weight issues, but I am certain that if you adhere
to the recommendations in my program, you will reach your weight loss
Again, the details are outlined in my nutrition plan, but generally
speaking a "healthy diet" is qualified by the following key factors:
•Unprocessed whole foods
•Often raw or only lightly cooked
•Organic or grass-fed, and free from additives and genetically modified
•Come from high-quality, local sources
•Carbohydrates primarily come from vegetables (except for corn or
To round out your weight loss program, you'll also need to have an
effective exercise regimen, and for this intensity is key.
High-intensity, burst-type exercises such as Peak 8 can significantly
cut down on the amount of time you have to spend exercising, while
optimizing your ability to burn body fat. Full instructions on how to
properly perform these exercises can be found in this previous article.
Hip2bfit.com Webmaster opinion
In my own personal opinion, I see a lot of merit to Doctor Mercola's
diet ideas. It's not a good idea to permanently do away with carbs, but
as Mercola says you can get your carbs through vegetables. Eating meat
only isn't good for you, but I also don't believe eating vegetables only
works in the long run. As far as my own personal diet, I have definitely
seen results in the last year or so by cutting out sugar in my diet. In
fact if you really want to lose weight I'd say you were wasting your
time if you drink as much as a coke a day. Dump the sugar, and
you'll lose the weight. The only sugar I get these days for the most
part comes from fruit.
Discuss this article
High Fructose Corn Syrup
to be changed to Corn Sugar
Tae Bo DVDs a Fun Way to
Exercise - Tae Bo is a great way to work on balance, flexibility,
and burning off extra calories.
Best Natural Way to Lose
Stay away from High Fructose Corn Syrup and sugar in general. That is
the easiest most effective way to lose weight. I know for some that is
like asking you to quit smoking or drinking. I know it's hard. I quit
smoking a few years back so I'm familiar with addictions.
Between Insulin to Sugar - Insulin actually is the body's appetite
Builders Who Stay in Shape Into their 70's and Beyond See video of
body builders in their 70s and beyond working out. See one lady in her
70's push more weight than men in their 20's.
I probably don't have to tell you that obesity rates are way out of
control in the U.S., but what are some of the factors involved? Stress,
high fructose corn syrup, lack of exercise, are some of the things to
look out for. Read more
Eat Kale for powerful
Review of Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred Workout DVD
Review of the levels and the exercises therein, plus my opinion on the
DVD as a whole.
What does soda do to
your body? Just for starters within 20 minutes, your blood sugar
spikes, and your liver responds to the resulting insulin burst by
turning massive amounts of sugar into fat.
Humpty Dumpty's Guide to Healthy Eating for
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