University of Virginia professor Glenn Gaesser has been doing research into diets and in his latest report he says that, contrary to popular opinion, eating the so-called bad carbs will not make you fat. As a matter of fact, he says it is nonsense. You will not die from eating white bread or an occasional donut and it will not necessarily make you put on weight either.
He has analyzed scientific research on the consumption of carbohydrates, the glycemic index and body weight index and has put all the results together. What his findings show are just the opposite of the current opinions.
What he found was that diets that are high in carbohydrates and associated with being slim. He also found that consuming lots of high-glycemic foods does not go hand in hand with high weight. As a matter of fact, he found that a lot of the larger studies that were done in the United States showed that high-glycemic diets led to better weight control.
The way a carbohydrate is classified as good or bad comes from the glycemic index, which is the measurement of the quality of the carbs based on how much it raises blood sugar.
Foods that have a high GI are put into the bad category because they tend to raise blood sugar more than the good carbs do.
Those who support the glycemic index say that this leads to the pancreas secreting excessive insulin and this in turn can cause weight gain as well as health problems.
Some of the foods that have a low Gi and are therefor considered good carbs are whole grain products like breads. And a glass of pineapple juice has a high GI, and a glass of apple juice a low one.
Many of the most popular low carb diets use the glycemic index, Gaesser says that it is not a reliable description of the quality of the carbs.
After analyzing hundreds of articles related to large-scale studies that were based on surveys or randomized, controlled trials he says that they show the people who are on high-carb diets tend to be slimmer, and even healthier than those on low carb ones.
He was also interested in finding out if there was a clear association between carbohydrate consumption and illnesses like type 2 diabetes, heart disease and cancer. His results show that there is no compelling evidence that shows that staying away from carbohydrates with a high GI does anything to help prevent these or any other disease. People with diabetes and women who do not have an active lifestyle and are obese may get some benefit from a lower consumption of high GI foods.
When you reduce any part of a diet there will be some level of weight loss at the beginning, as long as there is a calorie reduction. He says that for long term weight management, the best course of action is a high carb, low fat diet.
Source: University of Virginia http://www.virginia.ed