Carbs Are Not A Food Group
One thing I see and hear a LOT are people claiming that “carbs are bad” for you. There are so many things wrong with this statement, I almost don’t know where to begin… but let’s look at it this way:
It is important to understand that “carbs” (or carbohydrates) are not a food group. Food groups would be fruits or vegetables. Carbohydrates are known as “macro-nutrients”, much like a protein or fat. Carbs are a PART of these groups, but they are not a group in itself. For example, apples contain carbohydrates but they are not part of a carbs “group”, they are fruits.
So why are we saying “carbs are bad?” Just like there’s good and bad proteins or fats there are also good and bad carbs. But to say ALL carbs are bad is very misleading, confusing and downright WRONG.
As a matter of fact, whenever I see it mentioned in an article or interview it raises an instant “red flag” showing the source doesn’t know what they’re talking about. In my opinion, anyone claiming “carbs are bad” are like parrots, repeating the same misinformation that has been said before without any regard for truth.
To make it clear, carbohydrates are present in ALL plant-based foods. Every fruit, every vegetable and every starch contains carbohydrates. How could anyone possibly claim “carbs are bad” and still be taken seriously?
The fact is, carbohydrates are ESSENTIAL to optimal human health and provide us with ENERGY that we desperately need to get through each day, no matter the chore. Look at it this way; why do Olympic athletes “carb load” before a big race? Because they want to WIN. Carbohydrates are broken down into glucose (or sugar) which our body uses to fuel every cell in our body. If carbs make us fat or sick, our top athletes would be fat and sick as well, and they certainly wouldn’t be capable of ACHIEVING their goals.
Do you want to achieve your goals? Eat more carbs! I know this goes against the traditional information you’ve seen on television, read in magazine articles or heard from a friend… but sadly, they are MISINFORMED.
The reason why carbs get a bad reputation is due to processed foods, such as cookies or doughnuts. However, even this is misguided because it’s not necessarily the carbs in those foods that are so unhealthy, it’s the high amounts of saturated fat, added chemicals, and calories that introduce health risks into our diet. Instead of calling out the saturated fat, excessive sugar or chemicals used in processed foods, carbohydrates somehow carry the blame.
So my advice to you – embrace carbohydrates! The more you eat, the more energy and satisfaction you will feel with every meal. Just be sure the majority of your carbs are coming from plant-based foods and not processed ones. Instead of claiming “carbs are bad”, I have an idea. Let’s change it to “processed foods are bad”, and not a macro-nutrient part of them.
– Anthony Vita