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Low carbohydrate diet works for me and some of my clients

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There is much acceptance now in the field of nutrition for dietary fat not to be shunned as the bad guy, and excess carbohydrate to be avoided. I think the facts show that a reliance on carbohydrates can lead to over production of insulin and, in the long term, glucose intolerance, and finally increased incidence of diabetes.

My husband and I have eaten a low carbohydrate diet for nearly four years now and will never, ever go back to a high carb diet. Initially, after consulting a Bristol based nutritionist called Jamie Richards, we switched to a very low carb diet to help my health, and after a fairly difficult first month we now find it easy, and the benefits have been big. One problem I used to have was feeling hungry a lot, and only an hour or two after a high carb breakfast, suffering the effects of low blood sugar every day, like shaking, frustration, tiredness. Now, after a higher protein and fat breakfast I can last from 8 am until 1 pm with no problem and no feelings of hunger. The satiating effects of protein and fat are undisputed. We eat a much more varied diet now, including more vegetables, lentils, eggs, fish and nuts than we used to, and I think this can only be beneficial to overall health.

My husband (a cycling king) found he is able to produce more power than ever before, and last a 3 hour cycle ride with no additional calories; something not possible before when relying on carbs. Apparently your body learns to use other nutrients to produce energy, including that required by the brain, by a complicated process called gluconeogenesis. You can read more about this in a book called ‘The art and science of low carbohydrate living’ by Volek and Phinney (2011).

I was reminded how useful a lower carb diet is for reducing fat weight, when two of my clients reported ‘getting back onto the diet properly’ and one losing half a stone in two weeks, and the other losing 12kg since about May. I have found that initial losses can be stark, but it levels out and maintenance is possible even while consuming some wholegrain carbs. We do eat carbs but more in the way of root vegetables, lentils, milk and yoghurt, with a little quinoa and brown rice. No more bread, pasta or cereal, and I don’t miss it.

I am not a nutritionist, so I am not advising you what to eat. I am just saying that reducing carbs has been a major factor in weight loss for my clients, and improved health for me and my family. Just cutting out added sugars from your diet as a start could have amazing consequences.

Lisa :)

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