The Low-Carb Craze Continues
Are low-carbohydrate products worth the high price tag?
Carbs Are Not the Enemy
What all this comes down to is that we need to learn more about how carbs
work in weight loss. An ongoing, government-funded study may supply some
answers. Almost 200 people will be closely monitored while they follow the diet
for two years. But in the meantime, we need to be skeptical.
"It does take a little more energy to digest protein than carbs or
fat," says Julie Walsh, MS, RD, spokeswoman for the American Dietetic
Association. But she firmly believes that at the end of the day, it's the total
number of calories you eat that determines whether you lose weight.
"The only good thing that has come from the low-carb craze is that it
has served to educate Americans that there are good and bad carbs, and we are
definitely over-consuming refined carbohydrates such as sodas and white
bread" says Walsh. "As a nation, we need to eat more whole grains and
fewer refined carbohydrates if we are going to be successful at weight
Which brings up another important point: Low-carb diets don't do much to
teach you how to make good food choices once you go off the low-carb wagon.
And, after days or weeks of low-carb dieting, many people find themselves
craving carbohydrates more than ever.
Further, while it's possible to lose weight quickly when you begin a
high-protein diet, experts believe much of that loss is water. So low-carb
still is not the diet of choice for lifetime weight loss.
My crystal ball shows signs that the low-carb trend is headed for the same
fate as the low-fat craze did in the '90s. A decade ago, shelves were packed
with fat-free products. But these items did little to stem the tide of the
growing obesity epidemic. While they were fat free, they were loaded
Besides, when you're trying to lose weight, you should not be focused on
products like cookies, chocolate, beer, etc. whether they're low-carb, low-fat,
or whatever. These simply are not the kinds of foods that help you take off
pounds. So the next time you're at the grocery store, walk on by those low-carb
foods and right into the fresh produce section.
The WebMD Weight Loss Clinic advocates a healthy, balanced diet that you can
live with forever. Our eating plan is in accordance with guidelines from all
the leading health authorities and government. So stick with us. We'll help you
learn about the healthy carbs while you lose weight and improve your overall
health and well-being.