“Carbs are the new fat” these days. With the explosion of popular low carb diets like Atkins and Paleo it seems as though the world has turned its back on carbs – and warm up a lot more to fats.
Now, low carb diets are definitely not ideal for trying to build mass but for fat loss they definitely have their place. Given the size of the people in most developed countries it’s quite obvious that most people’s priority is to lose fat and not necessarily gain muscle, hence this article should be applicable to a lot of people out there.
Low Carb Diet Not Working Out? Try Doing This!
So what is a low-carb diet? Well the name is pretty self explanatory! There are tons of articles out there describing the benefits of such a diet so do a quick google search for “atkins” or “paleo” to learn more.
It can definitely be tricky to find foods that are paleo-friendly particularly when you are out at restaurants so it does require a lot of dedication. Having said that when followed properly these diets do have the potential to help people lose a lot of fat quickly.
So why do so many people fail on these low carb diets?
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Well, aside from the obvious group who bailed because they miss their pizza and french fries, there are actually people who manage to gain weight on one of these low carb diets!
The thing is, when you cut out carbohydrates entirely from your diet you need to replace them with something. Most low-carb diets will advocate a certain amount of protein (around 150 grams for example), about 50 grams of carbohydrates and the rest coming from fats.
For most people that’s a lot more than they are used to eating. You see, fats contain 9 calories per gram, which is more than double the 4 calories per gram found in protein or carbohydrates.
Often people who get on these low-carb diets don’t actually track just how much fat they are eating!
They will throw back a few cups of almonds and cashews without realizing they just went well over their daily calorie target. As a result, if you want to be successful on one of these low-carb diets you really need to monitor your fat intake carefully.
One cup of almonds can be the difference between eating a 300 calorie deficit or eating a calorie surplus!
It can be frustrating because it seems as though they are eating less food by the physical size of what they are consuming. However, once you account for the calorie density of fatty foods you see that they are consuming just as much if not more!
Now, we don’t want to write these diets off completely because they can and do work for many people out there. However, it’s important to figure out what works for you. Some people work very well on a high protein and high fat diet while others feel very lethargic and report significant strength and muscle loss.
If, however, you are in the group of people who function well on paleo you need to watch your calories carefully.
As mentioned earlier, fatty foods like almonds and cashews contain a ton of calories so make sure you are measuring out exactly what you are eating and recording it in a journal.
After some time you will have an easier time estimating that you are in the correct range.
Likewise, make sure you track your weight over time – don’t just assume you are making progress because you are eating low-carb diet. There is a possibility that you could be over-eating if you aren’t actually tracking your calories in.
Finally, give dieting with carbs a try. If you are able to function well and lose weight at a steady pace while on a well-balanced diet then you should stick to that.
Don’t deny your body carbohydrates if doing so will cause you to lose muscle mass and feel tired all day – that will only hurt your gains in the long run and make you waste time putting the muscle back on that you lost during your cut.
Most importantly, track those calories going in every day – if you stay disciplined and hit your target deficit while eating the right foods and doing resistance training you will make progress, guaranteed.
—>PS. Especially on low carb diets people have a lack of energy, that is were many use a fat burning supplements to get that extra energy & speed up the grueling fat loss process.
It might be a good option for some people out there to include a proven and effective fat burning supplements into their diet. Some of these products are however a complete waste of money with ineffective and outdated ingredients.
Make sure to know what ingredients to look for in our guide on the best ingredients for fat burning supplements.