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If you are like many, you love carbs – the unhealthy ones! They are everywhere and packed into many of the foods that we would love to enjoy on a daily basis. My favorite carb happens to be bread. I could eat bread throughout the day everyday! I’m getting a bit excited thinking about that, but I digress. The fact is that overconsumption of unhealthy carbs will wreak havoc on your health and fitness efforts. The good news is that there are plenty of healthy and delicious alternatives that will help you to better control your carb intake
Do Not Drink Sugary Beverages
Soda, apple juice, fruit punch! These sugary beverages have very little nutritional value, and do not satisfy your hunger. For example, the 100 calories from drinking apple juice leaves you hungrier than if you ate an actual apple instead. As a result, you may be prone to consume more of these “empty calories.” Is it really worth it? I don’t think so. Consuming water is a much better way to quench your thirst.
Eat More Vegetables
Many tend to increase the amount of vegetables consumed when beginning a low-carb diet. However, this is an option you can start incorporating into your lifestyle now. Opt for non-starchy vegetables, such as greens, cauliflower, avocado, mushrooms.
Eat More (Healthy) Fat
Yes, it’s true! Eating healthy fats is actually a good thing. Fats fill us up, and make it less likely that we will overeat, especially in conjunction with consuming less carbs. We need fats for our bodies to run smoothly. Great sources of healthy fats include olive oil, nuts, avocado, fatty fish, and flax seeds.
Are You Getting Enough Protein?
According to the National Academy of Science, we can safely consume up to 35% of our diet as protein. Are you getting enough? Calculate your protein intake and see. If not, experiment with adding more protein sources into your diet.
QUALITY over Quantity
As you increase your vegetables, protein, and healthy fats, decrease the portion sizes of your high carb foods. Portion control is key and often they area where many struggle. The portion sizes we’ve become accustomed to are significantly more generous than a standard portion size in many instances. Half a cup of potatoes or rice is a standard serving size. So, get out your measuring cup and become more familiar with a true portion size. Also, IF YOU MUST INDULGE, have a 2 x 2-inch piece of a really great cake, or a small scoop of premium ice cream. One square of really great chocolate can satisfy a craving better than a bigger chocolate bar that is lower in quality.
Select Brown over White
Choose brown rice instead of white rice, and whole wheat bread instead of white bread. Additionally, eating grains whole instead of ground up into flour is a better option. You may find that a “no white diet” to be an easy way to cut back on carbs.
As with making any change, incorporating some or all of these strategies at once could be a bit overwhelming. So start off by making substitutions into your diet. Substitute lower-carb foods for high carb counterparts. Try a high-fiber low-carb cereal. Prepare spaghetti squash in place of pasta. Consider snacking on a package of nuts at the movies instead of popcorn. Continue to introduce these healthier substitutions into your diet and you will be well on your way to controlling carb consumption and a healthier lifestyle.
– Wishing you continued success in your fitness journey!Click here for reuse options!
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