The Carbohydrate Monster Under Your Bed

Thursday, December 26, 2013

"Fear doesn't exist anywhere except in the mind." - Dale Carnegie

Fear is defined as a distressing emotion that is brought on by an impending danger, evil or pain whether or not the threat is real or imaginary. The imaginary fear being the most trifling in this instance because we are not even sure if this so called "threat" exists in the first place. For example: When I was a child, I watched the movie Halloween (one of my favorite movies to this day) and from that point onward I could never go to sleep on Halloween night again for the next several years in fear of Michael Myers coming to kill me. As I grew older, I realized something... it was just a movie and there was nothing to be afraid of. The monster under my bed, or in this case the serial killer out to get me, was nothing more than a figment of my imagination but at the time, this movie sure had me convinced that this threat was real. I bring this up because the mental fear doesn't just apply to serial killers and monsters; there is a very real fear of carbohydrates that also exists in the minds of tens if not hundreds of thousands of Americans that in my opinion is completely unwarranted.

Of all the nutrition myths that exist in the health community and message boards, the theory behind carbohydrates consumption leading to weight gain has to be the most debated topic amongst the common folk. There exists a lot of confusion on the Internet, as one health blog says A while another Blog says B and yet the biggest body of evidence from nutrition experts says C. So the big question becomes: Who do we believe? I personally have always found that those individuals presenting the most unbiased information in the most logical and rational manner usually get my vote of confidence. So, my goal with this post is to do the same...I'm just going to attempt to clear up some of the confusion surrounding this topic( carbohydrate ingestion and weight) by weighing as much evidence as possible to bring about a more rational perspective beyond just the black and white argument that is regurgitated far too often in a grossly misrepresented and overly simplistic fashion.

Essentially, the argument in it's most simplest of form that I have seen floating around the internet and heard recited by individuals in causal conversations which I am attempting to refute with this series of posts goes something like this:

--> It is well known that the release of insulin from the pancreases leads to suppression of fatty acids in the adipose i.e body fat and an increase in fat uptake.

--> Because of this, it has been hypothesized that elevated insulin causes obesity because of it's ability to promote fat storage and stop its release. This is a very simple connect the dots game.

--> It then leads to the logic that because carbohydrates cause an insulin spike, they are the most fattening in any amount. Doesn't matter how much, fat, protein or calories you eat as long as you stay away from carbohydrates period. Get it?

There are other claims that will be discussed as well like:

--> Carbohydrates cause cravings due to the initial spike and rapid fall in insulin
--> Blood sugar Spikes are bad
--> Carbohydrates Caused the obesity epidemic

Pay attention as we review the basics first, I might not outright refute the above in a nice neat paragraph as this is an extremely multi-faceted issue with years of research behind it and require thorough explanation.

The Rest of this Series can be Read Here theskinnywhitebuddha.blo
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