What to Count – Carbs or Calories?
So you're trying to be healthier in the new year – exercise more, sleep more soundly, eat better and lose weight – but you've already gotten stuck when it comes to the eating better and losing weight part. You know you have several options you can go with, amongst them portion control or watching carbs, so which is it? Which will provide the better value for you? It actually depends on which you find easier as both have proven to have benefits.
When it comes to watching carbs, the philosophy is that by limiting carbs, your body switches to burning fat automatically for energy, instead of burning carbs like glucose. One positive of a low-carb diet is that studies have shown that reducing carbs tends to automatically lead to a reduced appetite, which actually means you're eating less calories without even trying! There also often tends to be some weight loss involved in that there is significant water loss. Excess bloat tends to go away in the first week or two. Another way low-carbs result in weight loss is by the increase in protein that you are eating. This happens because protein takes energy to metabolize and the body expends energy turning protein into glucose. If you choose to watch carbs, be prepared to say goodbye to items like bread and sweets, and hello to lots of lean meats, fish and veggies!
What if you want to count calories? That's the more old-fashioned, traditional way to go when it comes to a healthier lifestyle and losing weight. It's fairly easy to do as well as you simply need to keep a log of your caloric intake for one whole week; this will enable you to cut out calories a lot easier because you can now see exactly how much you're eating and what foods they're coming from. The issue here is that all calories aren't created equal. I mean, you know that the calories in an Egg McMuffin are different from the calories in an avocado, in how they affect your hormones, metabolism and even appetite! You also need to be on the lookout for so-called “sneaky” calories – even foods that are low-carb or low-fat can be high in unhealthy calories.
Pick the plan that works best with your body and lifestyle, then go online to Top Chef Meals and check out our Accelerated Weight Loss Plan meal packages and our Paleo Plan meal packages (also low in carbs!) or create your own custom menu that fits your tastes. Whatever your needs may be, we've got you set at Top Chef. Bon appétit!