Mom and I had a conversation over lunch. Our topic: crab fat.
I cooked Shrimp in Crab Paste for lunch, and boy, it was terrific!
Problem was mom didn’t seem so interested.
“Dig in, mom. The crab paste makes the shrimp taste awfully great.” I told her.
“I’m trying to avoid fat. My blood pressure’s on the rise the past few weeks.” She said.
“Fat isn’t the problem mom. Eat less rice instead, and avoid sugary foods.”
“Isn’t that what diabetics ought to do? I’m not diabetic.” She replied.
Oh mom. We should talk about food more often.
Less Fat for a Healthy Heart, Less Carbs for Stable Blood Sugar Levels?
Eat less fat to avoid cardiovascular issues. Eat less carbohydrates to avoid type 2 for diabetes. This is obsolete personalized nutrition.
So what happens if I am at risk for both cardiovascular disease and diabetes type 2?
I wanted to test mom with that question, but I think she wouldn’t like the idea.
Perhaps she’d lecture me on staying healthy to avoid heart issues and diabetes in the first place.
Or maybe she’d tell me to eat nothing when that happens. That way I’ll die of starvation instead of heart ailments and/or diabetes. And then we’ll have a good laugh over lunch.
What I wanted to tell mom was that carb restriction wasn’t just for diabetics anymore.
Apart from reduced blood glucose for diabetics and pre-diabetics, there’s more to love about low-carb diets these days. After all, clinical trials in the last 10 years have shown that low-carb diets come with health benefits such as…
1. Accelerated Weight Loss And Improved Insulin Resistance
A study in 2004 compared weight loss results among overweight subjects divided into the low-carb diet and low-fat diet groups.
Can you guess who lost more weight at the end of the study?
The overweight subjects on a low-carb diet had more success when it comes to losing weight. The results section of the study reads:
Compared with a low-fat diet, a low-carbohydrate diet program had better participant retention and greater weight loss. During active weight loss, serum triglyceride levels decreased more and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol level increased more with the low-carbohydrate diet than with the low-fat diet.
In another study, researchers also found out that, apart from better weight loss, subjects on a low-carb diet also had better insulin sensitivity. Better insulin sensitivity leads to lower risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and cancer.
Any way you look at it, eating a low-carb diet is the best way to lose fat and keep it off.
2. Improved Triglyceride Count, Lower LDL (bad) Cholesterol, and Lower Blood Pressure
This is the part that mom should be reading.
In 1999, subjects on a low-fat, low-carb, and high-protein diet were able to reduce LDL (bad) Cholesterol levels. Their triglyceride concentrations also fell.
Lower LDL cholesterol and triglyceride concentrations means less risk of stroke, heart attack, and heart disease.
A high-fat diet meanwhile, lowered triglyceride levels among men with slightly elevated triglyceride concentrations. This was the result of a 2004 study in Germany.
See mom! Crab paste is awesome.
As for your blood pressure, another study in 2004 confirmed that reducing carbohydrate intake also lowers blood pressure.
If anything, my idea that mom should cut back on carbs instead of fat to improve her blood pressure was spot on!
3. Improved Memory and Lower Risk of Brain Disorders
If you want to remember this article 20, maybe 30 years from now, you’re going to need to eat less carbs.
Why? Scientists think that a low-carb lifestyle may be the key to decreasing incidences of Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease.
A low-carb lifestyle may also be the solution to preventing Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS, otherwise known as Lou Gehrig’s disease). The disease is incurable as of the moment.
So if you’re thinking of doing the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge (Or if you’re planning to do it again), do something different. Start by explaining how going low-carb might be one’s best chance to stay clear of the disease. You might just end up saving a life.
In the past, low-carbohydrate diets have only been used to treat seizures among children. But with the developments I just mentioned, it seems like carbohydrate restriction is vital in keeping your nervous system healthy as you age.
But what if I’m already in the best shape of my life?
People often think of low-carb diets as cures for the sick and the old.
Well, there’s actually some truth to that.
But low-carb diets as cures is just half of the story.
The other half of the story says that low-carb diets are also good for healthy people. Low carb diets don’t only cure problems, they also prevent problems from developing in the future. And if that wasn’t enough, they also help enhance your health by giving you more energy, better sleep, better mood, making you stronger, and so much more.
4. Low Carb Diets Increase Energy, Maintain Alertness, and Enhance Mood
Ever wonder why you feel sleepy, lousy, and stupefied after a high-carb meal?
Carbohydrates are a good source of energy, yes. But they may also lull you to sleep.
New studies indicate that this could be because carbohydrates inhibit a specialized group of brain cells called orexin and hypocretin neurons.
Orexin and hypocretin neurons are responsible for keeping you alert. Turn them off with a sugary meal and you’ll be drowsy in no time.
Protein does the opposite by stimulating orexin and hypocretin neurons.
So what’s the best way to prevent sluggishness after a meal? Reduce carbs and pack your meal with proteins. With that you’ll never have to worry about power shortage and mood swings.
5. Low Carb Meals Eliminate Cravings and Control Your Appetite
Wonder how some people make dieting look so easy?
The guys who don’t drool over sweets have gained metabolic flexibility, meaning their bodies are adept at using carbs AND fat for fuel.
Metabolic flexibility all boils down to habit. If you get used to eating a low carb diet, the cravings will soon go away.
This may take time and commitment though. On the first two or three weeks of the diet, urges will be so strong that you might end up sneaking in a can of coke or a bite of your favorite cake.
But once you’ve gotten used to low-carb eating, the sea of urges will calm down. You’ll never see sweets the same way again.
Ready for all these health benefits?
There’s no better time to start a low-carb diet than now. If you need more help, read my post on how to get started on a low carb diet.
Knowledge is power, my friend. With that, and Yoda-like patience, you’ll be able to reap these health benefits and more by making simple adjustments to your diet.
A low-carb diet will change your life without you realizing how much of a better man you’ve become.
As always, the comments section below is open if you have any queries or points for discussion.
And oh, before I forget. You can also drop a message for mom.
How are you going to convince her to go on a low-carb diet? I could use some help, you know.
Peace out and stay healthy.