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Health Myths Debunked: Are Carbs the Enemy?

Kayla Reynolds, MS

We’ve looked at whether eating 6 small meals a day speeds up your metabolism.

We’ve also dispelled the idea that you need to exercise for 20 minutes consecutively for any benefit.

This week it’s time to debunk another health myth: Are carbs the enemy?

The Myth

Carbs are the enemy.

The Background

Carbohydrates as a whole have been demonized for everything from weight gain to poor glycemic (blood sugar) control. Why? Carbohydrates can be high in sugar, especially refined sugar, which is associated with weight gain, excess fat stores, and chronic conditions like type 2 diabetes.

The Facts

Carbohydrates are not all created equal. While white bread, cereal, crackers, and store-bought jams may contribute to sugar cravings, weight gain, and poor glycemic control, whole-grain bread, brown rice, and vegetables actually show the opposite. Whole grains like brown rice and complex carbohydrates like vegetables are high in vitamins and minerals and are associated with a lower risk of developing chronic diseases, such as coronary heart disease and diabetes. They are also rich in fiber, which has been shown to contribute to digestive health and weight control.

The Bottom Line

While some people experience successful weight loss on a low-carb diet and feel great during the process, avoiding carbs is not necessary to achieve your weight loss and health goals! Carbohydrates can be an important part of a healthy, well-balanced diet — one that you can stick with for the long haul! When choosing carbohydrates, avoid processed carbs and opt for healthier carbohydrates (like vegetables, fruits, and whole grains) that are high in vitamins, minerals, and fiber, to keep you satisfied and feeling great!

Get into a healthy routine that you can stick to with the help of a dedicated health coach and Noom course today!