Eating Fat to Lose Fat & Other Myths About Carbohydrates


A few days ago someone questioned me why I was eating only steak and salad and why there were no carbs in my serving.

This made me think of something very interesting: words like carbohydrates, protein and fats were not common in our vocabulary some years ago.

Times are changing, every day we have more access to information. We could actually call it information obesity by now. And even though a lot of what is offered can be very contradicting, we know more about health and fitness than our grandparents did.

Even though blogs, including the most reliable ones, should not be used to replace the assistance of an expert in Fitness & Nutrition, they can still be helpful by providing a new start, point of view or strategy that maybe the professional you choose will not be able to offer.

One of these possibilities comes from the thoughts we might hold regarding to fats, proteins and carbohydrates.

Something like: "Fat makes you fat, you need carbohydrates or you will die, and too much protein is bad for your kidneys."

Dogmas, dear friends. We must fight them, we must keep in mind that whatever is the scientific article used to support a point of view, no matter who is behind it, how big is the company sponsoring the study, how long it took to collect data, number of people involved, still they would not be enough to prove that something is specifically good or bad for you.

Remember, you are unique. More than researches, nutrition consults, degrees and expertise, you must try it, experiment with different possibilities. You are free to do so.

It was by self experimenting that I developed so much interest for Fitness & Nutrition, including many changes in my life style: I started eating less industrialized foods, got interested in fasting, using all natural cosmetics, drinking less alcohol, never smoking, no television, more books, less carbohydrates, more proteins and fats.

But let's get UP to the evidences...

Yes! There are lots of scientific evidences pointing that a low carb diet for the majority of us (including those who exercise on a daily basis and also those who don't exercise regularly) tends to be positively beneficial to the nervous system, body recomposition (less fat tissue, more lean mass and thicker bones).

And let's get UP to the common sense as well...

You don't need to go far to find out that our body structure is the same for at least ten thousand years. Think about everything that changed so far. While our ancestors would spent 10-12 hours a day being physically active, worried about their survival needs; our one to two hours a day spent crossfitting, lifting, weight training, surfing, doing whatever we choose to do is not enough to justify the amount of carbohydrates we usually ingest.

Carbs are sugars which represent the favorite source of energy to our bodies, glucose.

The human body though is very adaptable: lack of sugar equals adaptation (we will see it soon), too much sugar equals increased fat storage, in other words increased love handles.

It happens, but there is a solution...

The simple act of cutting off refined, industrialized, processed foods as much as possible is already enough to decrease most of the excessive carbohydrates we have been eating.

And even more important than body recomposition, by doing so, we are also cutting off chemicals, additives, preservatives and refined products.

When this new reality was brought to my attention about eight years ago, I was from the very first moment very interested in trying it myself. I have spent and I still spend many hours not only reading about the subject, as well as experimenting with it. I've motivated friends, clients and family to try it as well, and the results tend to be very similar:

Less hunger, more energy, better hydration with less water retention, strength, stamina, enthusiasm and of course, fat loss.

But how would a diet lower in refined carbohydrates be able to promote so many benefits at once?

Remember that carbohydrates are sugars and sugar is the favorite fuel to our bodies?

Once we limit our sugar intake, the body starts adapting to producing more glucose (sugar) through the metabolism of proteins and fats, which in turn also demands more calories being burned from our own fat reserves.

It is important to note that by cutting off rice, bread, pasta, juices, sweets and candies, fries, alcohol, flours you are not going down the zero carbohydrates pathway. Unrefined options as green leaves, salads, greens, fruits, grains, legumes, nuts, seeds and yams also provide this nutrient, so there is no need to say that this is a very difficult habit or trying to find excuses for not doing so.

On the other hand, the excessive consumption of any of these healthy options can also make it difficult experiencing any of the benefits previously promoted.

Stimulating the human body to be more efficient when producing sugar through fats and proteins is not something that happens from one day to the other, I remember taking 12-14 days to really start feeling the difference in my skin, sleep, hair and energy levels.

Also keep in mind that this is not something that you must do forever...

Carbohydrates, even the refined ones, are not enemies, still all of us can benefit from reducing some of it.

When I suggest eating more protein and fat, I mean the good quality ones: lean cuts of meat, fish, poultry, eggs, nuts, seeds, avocado, coconut, coconut oil, ghee, olive oil, all preferably organic.

And of course, when really craving something, or when good quality options are not available at some moment, enjoy some burgers, ground beef, drumsticks, bacon, sausages, etc. At least, try keeping away from bread, fries, sauces when eating these options.

The fact of not having the food we would like to have around all the time does not mean that when eating not so healthy options, we must totally abandon the strategy wrecking the possibilities of a low carb lifestyle.

Keep Strong. And Try It Yourself.