Add th­ese me­tab­o­lism-boost­ing foods to your next shop­ping list!

IF YOU REFUSE TO GIVE UP PIZZA, THIS ONE’S FOR YOU…

OK! (Australia) - - Contents -

Alot of celebs have spruiked the ben­e­fits of cut­ting carbs from their diet. But, you don’t have to take such dras­tic mea­sures – there is a plan that lets you have your bread and eat it, too! Carb cy­cling is hav­ing a ma­jor mo­ment mom right now, with ev­ery­one from Kim Kar­dashian to Ju­lianne Hough ad­vo­cat­ing the trend. Even Aussie stun­ner Lara Wor­thing­ton spills that she en­joys pizza ‘at least twice a week.’ ‘It’s been an in­cred­i­bly use­ful tool in ef­fec­tive diet plan­ning for decades and I swear by it,’ ex­plains celebrity per­sonal trainer David Kings­bury – whose client ros­ter has in­cluded Hugh Jack­man and Jake Gyl­len­haal. ‘Name a movie for which I’ve trained the lead­ing cast, and I can guar­an­tee I’ve had them all carb cy­cling.’ In his book The Sweet Potato Diet, fit­ness guru Michael Morelli Morell writes that you can lose more than 5kg in two weeks with the plan. Read on to see whether it’s right for you!

WHAT IS IT?

Here’s the is­sue with car­bo­hy­drates: You need them to power through your work­outs, but eat­ing too many can con­trib­ute to fat stor­age and ex­cess ki­los. That’s why carb cy­cling for weight loss might be the happy medium we’ve all been look­ing for.

Carb cy­cling al­lows you to al­ter your carb in­take ac­cord­ing to your plans for the week. On days when you’re crush­ing it at the gym you can con­sume more carbs, al­low­ing your body to burn through them (along with fat) for en­ergy in­stead of pro­tein. This al­lows the mus­cle-build­ing nu­tri­ent to fo­cus on do­ing its job.

But on your days off train­ing, eat­ing ex­tra carbs could en­cour­age your body to store that un­used glu­cose in your fat cells. By eat­ing less carbs on a rest day, your body turns to fat for en­ergy in­stead of the sug­ary and starchy

YOUR CARB IN­TAKE NEEDS TO VARY FROM ONE DAY TO THE NEXT

foods it usu­ally gob­bles up. The idea is that by be­ing strate­gic about when and how you eat carbs (your body’s pre­ferred fuel source for ex­er­cise), you can more ef­fi­ciently power your work­outs and achieve bet­ter re­sults in terms of both per­for­mance and body com­po­si­tion.

DOES IT WORK?

For those days when you’re not hit­ting the gym and do­ing a full-body work­out, there are def­i­nite weight-loss ben­e­fits to munch­ing on fewer carbs. ‘ You don’t need to be hoard­ing all th­ese ex­tra calo­ries if they’re not go­ing to be used,’ di­eti­cian Ge­orgie Fear ex­plains. ‘Un­like your fat and pro­tein in­take, your carb needs vary from one day to the next.’

Swap­ping carbs for pro­tein and ve­g­ies is also great for your waist­line, as it be­comes harder to overeat. And that’s not the only ben­e­fit! Carb cy­cling can also help to pre­serve mus­cle mass, as­sist with mus­cle re­cov­ery, re­duce body fat, main­tain a steady me­tab­o­lism, boost en­ergy lev­els and bal­ance hor­mones. It can be seen as flex­i­ble di­et­ing as well, so you’re not lim­ited in how you ap­proach each week. It means you can still go out and so­cialise and en­joy your favourite foods with­out risk­ing the pos­si­bil­ity of fall­ing off track!

SHOULD I TRY IT?

Un­like some more re­stric­tive di­ets, there’s noth­ing dan­ger­ous about switch­ing up the way you con­sume carbs – so this method is gen­er­ally a safe op­tion for those want­ing to shift some un­wanted weight. ‘Hav­ing higher carbs on some days and lower carbs on other days is how the body nat­u­rally reg­u­lates it­self,’ Ge­orgie Fear ex­plains. ‘So there’s noth­ing wrong with tak­ing ad­van­tage of some of the ben­e­fits of re­duc­ing carbs.’ How­ever, mak­ing sure you fol­low the ba­sic prin­ci­ples, plus en­sur­ing your diet is well-bal­anced in all other ar­eas, is in­te­gral to this plan work­ing. Case in point: you can’t use your high-carb days to load up on noth­ing but pizza and fries! In­stead, go for whole grains such as brown rice, quinoa, and whole­grain bread and pasta, which are health­ier choices than more re­fined op­tions such as su­gar, cakes, cook­ies and soft drinks. On your low-carb days, try swap­ping a serv­ing or two of your reg­u­lar carb in­take with leafy green ve­g­ies, lean pro­tein or healthy fats. For ex­am­ple, if you nor­mally have a whole­meal chicken sand­wich for lunch, try a chicken and spinach salad with cheese in­stead. As for your work­out sched­ule, on high-carb days, per­form high-in­ten­sity or long-du­ra­tion work­outs such as in­ter­val train­ing, sprints, weights or long runs. On low-carb days, ei­ther rest or per­form low-in­ten­sity work­outs like yoga, barre or go­ing for a light jog. After each meal, you should feel sat­is­fied, but not stuffed. If you aren’t, try in­creas­ing your por­tion sizes or add a snack.

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