Everyone knows a balanced diet is a key to good health, but knowing is often different than doing. It’s easy to say “I’m going to eat healthier”, but how does one go about finding a healthy and doable balance when it comes to eating well?
The main dietary challenge that most people face today in regards to eating healthy is the wide variety of processed food and simple carbs available on grocery store shelves and in vending machines. Some carbs are okay – they can even be good for you if they’re not overly processed. So how can you know if you’re eating too many carbs? Here are some signs that you might be eating more carbs than your body can handle.
You Might Be Eating Too Many Carbs If……
- You feel cranky or irritable after consuming carbs. If you’re noticing mood changes after eating carbs, it could be a sign that you’re overdoing the carb consumption
- You find your energy level drops after consuming carbs. If eating carbs makes you feel sleepy or listless, you might be eating more carbohydrates than you should be
- You frequently find yourself craving carbohydrate-rich foods. If you crave sweet foods, salty foods or starchy foods on a regular basis, it could be a sign that you are eating too many carbs and not enough proteins and fresh veggies
- You find yourself turning to carb consumption (such as sugary or starchy foods) when you’re stressed. If high stress levels, feelings of anxiety or feelings of depression have you reaching for high carbohydrate foods, you might have too many carbs in your diet
- You gain weight easily after carb consumption. If an evening of bread and pasta finds you facing the morning scale with a couple of extra pounds, you might be eating too many carbs
Do you suffer any of the above effects after consuming carbohydrates? If so, it might be a good time to assess your diet and change things up in terms of your carbo load. Here are some steps you can take to lower your carbohydrate intake in a way that won’t leave your body rebelling for more.
- Try eating 2 or 3 meals a day with little or no carbs, and then eat your third meal as you normally would, carbs and all.
- Cut the unhealthy fats from your diet, such as vegetable and canola oil, and replace them with heart healthy fats such as extra virgin olive oil, avocados and organic butter from grass fed, hormone free cows
- Exercise more, even if that means simple steps such as taking the stairs instead of the elevator, parking at the back of the parking lot or taking a 3o minute walk at lunch. Regular exercise helps the immune system and the circulation system function better, which could in turn help you process carbohydrates better.
- Slowly cut most or all simple carbs from your diet, replacing them with organic brown rice, healthy snacks , proteins-rich foods and lots of leafy green vegetables. You’ll likely find that soon you won’t even want to eat simple carbs anymore.
Cutting down on carbs and eating healthy can be fun with a little creativity and the willingness to try new and fun recipes. Give your body a chance to start craving whole foods as opposed to process foods and eat your way to better health.
This Site Was Inspired By An Interest in Protecting the Environment:
We had the privilege and joy of learning from Dr. Charlie Stine who instilled a love for the natural world through incredible field trips with the Johns Hopkins Odyssey Certificate program in Environmental Studies. At the time, the program was endorsed by the Maryland Department of Natural Resources. Sadly, after Dr. Stine retired, the program was phased out. We hope that we honor his legacy by shining a bright light on environmental issues and sharing good news about the success of various conservation programs when possible.
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