In one word No!

FACT – Japan has one of the lowest obesity rates and one of the highest rates of carbohydrate consumption!

DID YOU KNOW – Nutritional guidelines established that carbohydrates should make up to 40% to 65% of total calorie intake to fulfil our body energy demands and to reduce risk of some non-communicable diseases.

It is in fact the type/quantity of carbohydrates that are the issue!

We should ultimately get aim to get our carbs from good low glycaemic index sources and fibre sources higher than 25/30g per day as opposed to where most of us get them which are refined high salt/processed carbs. These should be reduced/kept to minimum.

How about weigh loss- Should I cut or reduce carbs?

Low carb diets (<130g per day) Keto (< 50g per day), Atkins and Dukan have gained much popularity in recent years but are they really the secret to weight loss?
Carbs are often dismissed as fattening, and it is true that society’s carbohydrate requirements have reduced due to less active lifestyles and more sedentary jobs, so reduction not elimination may be advisable where this is apparent. However, carbs remain and important part of a balanced diet and the main and most desirable fuel for our brain and are beneficial for wellbeing and growth of gut microorganism.

So how do we get energy from carbs?
When we digest carbs, they are broken down during digestion, releasing glucose into the blood stream. Where they are known as blood sugar
From here glucose enters the body’s cells with the help of insulin, this can be used immediately or stored in the liver.
Excess glucose (from excess carbs if consumed) is converted and stored in the liver and muscles alongside water at a ratio of 1 part glycogen to 3 parts water. Note WATER STORAGE!

The water is used to reconvert glycogen to glucose when energy is needed. The glucose is realised into the bloodstream along with the water.

When you cut carbs, your body depletes glycogen stores (glycogen helps your body retain water) releasing stored water. It is this loss of this – WATER (not fat) that shows on the scales.

When you start to eat carbs again the water comes back.High Carb =More Glycogen Stored = more water stored = more weight shown on scales Each gram(g) of glycogen comes with 3g of water attached.

Studies show that there is no significant difference in weight loss between low-carband low-fat diets However water weight is affected.

There are many health benefits of carbs If you suddenly restrict them, you may experience headaches and digestive symptoms such as constipation. The fibre in carbs has several benefits including improving digestion and maintaining steady blood sugar levels.

Restriction can cause fatigues low mood and food cravings. It’s not recommended for those recovering from an eating disorder or disordered eating Restricting any food group can result in nutritional deficiencies Dietary proteins and fats may increase to unhealthy levels which may reduce feelings of hunger to help with weight loss but cause other issues such as increased cholesterol. Research found that young healthy adults following a low carb high fat had a 44% increase in LDL cholesterol (bad type) which may contribute to increase risk of heart disease and stroke.

The only case where a low carb diet has proven health benefits is that of Type 2 Diabetes. It can be a safe effective SHORT TERM weight management solution, would help improve glycaemic control and reduce cardiovascular risk.