Two popular carbohydrate myths…
1. Eating carbs makes you FAT!
Carbs have received a bit of a bum rap recently, as medical research demonstrates that lower carbohydrate diets are more effective for obese people who seldom exercise. However, for a reasonably healthy individual aiming to build metabolically active muscle tissue, carbs are an absolute must-have. Carbs fuel the body for exercise and help drive protein into muscles for essential repair and growth. They also prevent the breakdown of muscle mass, which is key to burning fat stores. Don’t worry, this doesn’t mean that you will bulk up; more that you will look nicely toned.
2. Eating carbs at night makes you FAT!
Many dieters restrict their carb intake at night, limiting themselves solely to protein powder, poultry, fish and vegetables after 5pm. The widespread belief is that carbs eaten at night will unequivocally be stored as body fat, which is generally true, as insulin sensitivity decreases at night. But here’s the problem: if you exercise after work at 7pm and finish by 9pm, you must eat carbohydrates in your post-exercise meal in order to kick-start the muscle-building process. If you avoid carbohydrates, your body will fail to support the growth process and, even worse, it could increase your cortisol (a hormone that lowers testosterone levels and chews away muscle mass), thereby causing a drop in your metabolic rate. When your metabolic rate declines, your body becomes more efficient at storing body fat, so this is a very real concern.
If you have a hardworking lifestyle and tend to exercise during the evening, make sure to include some carbs in your workout meal.
A Health Tip from Mark Foster