Carbohydrates, sometimes called carbs, are an ongoing hot topic now. Some nutritional experts are starting to associate them with problems such as inflammation, diabetes and obesity. However, others continue to insist that they are an essential part of our daily diet.
So, are all carbohydrates bad for you? And how much carbohydrate should you eat every day? This is where carb-cycling can help.
Carbohydrates, along with fat and protein, make up the three macronutrients. When your body digests carbohydrates, they’re broken down into glucose – your brain and body’s preferred form of fuel. When glucose gets into the bloodstream, the pancreas is triggered to produce a hormone called insulin. This transports glucose from the bloodstream into the cell. Here, it is turned into energy, stored in the fat cells or stored as glycogen.
When you embark on a carb-cycling regime, you can reduce body fat while increasing muscle mass. It’s an extremely rigorous diet so it should only be used in the short-term. However, it is useful for breaking through weight-loss plateaus.
Carb cycling relies on increasing and decreasing carbohydrate intake on different days of the week. There are high-carb days and low-carb days as well as days on which no carbs are eaten at all. When you try carb cycling, you can eat carbohydrates if they’re from a clean source. The cycling allows the body to use fat more effectively as a fuel instead of burning muscle tissue and carbs.