Archive for the tag - carbs

Low-Carb Fruit List.

This day and age, carbohydrates get a bad rap. In reality, carbs are essential for mental and physical performance as the body uses these sugar molecules for fuel. Not consuming enough carbs can result in low energy levels or even, perhaps, even a state of ketosis.

Fruits contain not just carbohydrates – but also a whole slew of great vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and fiber. Because fruits are so nutrient-rich, it’s important to find ways to incorporate them into whatever crab-restrictive diet plan you may choose.

Just because you're on a carb-restrictive diet doesn't mean forgoing fruit. Use this list to incorporate lower-carb fruits into your diet.

To that end, the chart below sorts common fruits from low to high carb per serving. Use this chart as a general guide to make nourishing fruits a part of your balanced diet:

  • Date, 1 fresh: 2 carbs
  • Rhubarb, 1/2 cup: 3 carbs
  • Apricot: 4 carbs
  • Passion fruit: 4 carbs
  • Lychees, 1 oz: 5 carbs
  • Prune, 1 dried: 5 carbs
  • Strawberries, 1/2 cup: 5 carbs
  • Cranberries (raw) 6 carbs
  • Tomato: 6 carbs
  • Papaya, 1/2 cup: 7 carbs
  • Raspberry, 1/2 cup: 7 carbs
  • Blackberries, 1/2 cup: 9 carbs
  • Blackcurrants: 9 carbs
  • Grapes, 10 medium: 9 carbs
  • Plum: 9 carbs
  • Tangerine: 9 carbs
  • Blueberries, 1/2 cup: 10 carbs
  • Fig: 10 carbs
  • Guava: 10 carbs
  • Lime with peel: 10 carbs
  • Peach: 10 carbs
  • Pineapple, 1/2 cup: 10 carbs
  • Kiwi: 11 carbs
  • Avocado: 12 carbs
  • Cherries, 1/2 cup: 12 carbs
  • Grapefruit: 12 carbs
  • Lemon with peel: 12 carbs
  • Melon – honeydew, 1/10: 12 carbs
  • Nectarine: 16 carbs
  • Orange: 16 carbs
  • Apple: 21 carbs
  • Melon – cantaloupe, 1/2: 22 carbs
  • Pear: 25 carbs
  • Banana 27 carbs
  • Raisins 1/2 cup 29 carbs
  • Mango 35 carbs
  • Dates dried with sugar 62 carbs

Are Miracle Noodles Safe?

Hey Davey!

Recently my mom brought home this newer product called “Miracle Noodles”. They are a calorie and gluten free “noodle” that, apparently, Japanese woman eat to stay thin. I tried them and must admit that they are quite good. The only thing that worries me is the fact that they have no nutritional value whatsoever. Have you seen them or tried them? And if so (or even, if not) what are your thoughts on them? Should they be consumed despite the fact they have no nutritional value at all?

Thanks,
Mercedes

Hey Mercedes,

The so-called “miracle noodles” have been traditionally known as shirataki noodles. The noodles are made from the corm of a plant that is sometimes called the elephant yam – though it’s not actually related to the yam family. The resulting flour is mixed with water or other juices and powders to form slaps that are cut into the thin noodle strips.

Containing about 6 calories per kilo, shirataki noodles contain glucomannan – a water-soluble polysaccharide that is considered a dietary fiber. Like other fibers, it’s great for your bowels and helps alleviate constipation. Moreover, because the fiber is water soluble, the noodles expand in your stomach. This helps dieters feel full.

While some dieters may find this carb-free, nearly calorie-free noodle appealing (especially individuals on carbohydrate-restrictive diets), it’s important to consider a few things. For individuals that overeat, consuming large quantities of nutritionally devoid foods doesn’t help treat the core issue of overeating. In some ways, it’s a shortsighted approach. And since the noodles contain so few nutrients, eating large quantities (at the expense of other foods) can result in malnutrition.

I don’t eat shirataki noodles because they are terribly bland and tasteless. I much prefer eating a balanced diet of foods that are both nourishing and delicious. Having said that, if you find a recipe that you enjoy, there’s nothing wrong with eating shirataki noodles in moderation. However, it’s important to ensure you’re getting your nutrients elsewhere.

Love,
Davey Wavey

Sugar in Protein Shake: Is It Bad?

Dear Davey,

I recently bought a protein shake, but when I got home and read the ingredients more carefully, I realized just HOW MUCH SUGAR is in it! It has over 50 grams of sugar per serving!

Is that bad? Does the sugar prevent muscle growth? Does the sugar out-weigh the protein content?

From,
Christopher

Hey Christopher,

It seems like the necessity of post-workout carbohydrates is one of the best keep fitness secrets.

Everyone knows that your body needs protein after hitting the gym – but many people overlook the importance of post-workout carbs. When taken after a workout, carbohydrates restore muscle glycogen. And if you don’t eat carbs in your post-workout recovery meal, your body may actually break down existing muscle for this very same purpose.

And yes, even if you are on a low-carbohydrate diet, you still need to consume carbs after you exercise.

The sugars in your protein shake are carbohydrates, and so it sounds like your shake is designed specifically for post-workout consumption. If, on the other hand, you’re looking for general protein supplementation (i.e., some protein before bed), then it’s wise to seek out a lower carb alternative.

Experts recommend anywhere from 40 up to 70 (or more) grams of carbs after a workout; the 50 grams of sugar in your shake do the trick.

Interestingly, the best carbs to consume are those that are absorbed the quickest. The carbohydrates found in multi-grain bread, for example, break down slowly. After a workout, your body needs to carbs fast – so simple sugars, like those in your shake, are the best approach. Yes, I just gave you a green light to eat simple sugars. But only after a workout.

I hope that helps!

Love,
Davey Wavey

6 Foods Secretly High in Sugar.

Carbohydrates are your body’s primary source of energy, but not all carbs are created equal. For a lot of people looking to release some extra weight or increase definition, reducing the intake of simple carbohydrates – like table sugar – is common practice.

Food products like candy, chocolate bars and soda are obviously loaded with sugar. But there are a number of unlikely foods that are shockingly high in sugar. Here are my top 6:

  1. Some dried fruit. Dried fruit sounds like a healthy and nutritious snack, right? It can be. Except that many dried fruits are loaded with added sugar to enhance the sweetness. It’s totally unnecessary. When buying dried fruits, read the ingredients carefully. If you see any other ingredients beyond the fruit (like corn syrup, etc.), then put it back!
  2. Fruity drinks. A Pina Colada, for example, has more calories than a Big Mac and as much as 60 grams of sugar. That’s a shockingly high number – and the equivalent of more than 70 Skittles!
  3. Barbeque sauce. It might be lip smacking delicious, but barbeque sauce is packed with sugar. Two tablespoons of BBQ sauce has 12 – 15 grams of sugar. And let’s be real, who uses just two tablespoons? And BBQ sauce isn’t alone – many sauces and glazes are secretly high in sugar, so pay extra attention to both the nutrition information and the listed serving size.
  4. Chocolate milk. Milk, which contains lactose, already has its fair share of sugar. But add in some chocolate syrup, and a sugar buzz is almost unavoidable. A single 16 ounce container of Nesquick Fat Free Milk has a mind-numbing 54 grams of sugar.
  5. Tomato Sauce. Believe it or not, one cup of tomato sauce has as much as SIX teaspoons of sugar! Pasta is high in carbs to begin with, but tomato sauce can be a real diet killer. 100 of the sauce’s calories come from pure sugar.
  6. Vitamin Water. Last but not least, most people think of Vitamin Water as a healthy alternative to soda. Not so fast. A single bottle (they claim a bottle is 2.5 servings) contains 32 grams of sugar. And really, not that many vitamins.

Not on the list but runners up: fruity yogurt, smoothies (many have added sugar and/or honey), granola bars, cereal and ketchup (yes, seriously).

The bottom line is that if sugars – or carbs in general – are of concern to you, it’s important to read the nutrition information carefully… even for those foods that are unlikely suspects.

How to Reduce Carbs.

Instead of sandwiching your meat between a bun, replace the bread with lettuce

I’m absolutely in love with this simple and easy trick to reduce carbohydrate intake.

To make a long story short, I spent the month leading up to the filming of my upcoming “Jock Workout” video series leaning down. To do that, I eliminated a good portion of the carbs – especially simple carbs like sugar, white breads, pasta, rice, etc. – from my diet. It wasn’t anything too dramatic.

But here’s the thing: I love burgers. And eating a burger without a bun is kinda like eating a hunk of meatloaf. It’s just not that exciting. And then my friend Matt told me to try lettuce wraps.

Instead of sandwiching your meat between a bun (pun intended), place it between two slices or two hunks of lettuce. It’s still totally satisfying – and it adds a nice little crunch. I absolutely love it. In fact, I just ate some lettuce wrap sliders for lunch (actual meal pictured above)!

Now that I’m done filming, I’m going to increase my carbohydrate intake. While eating fewer carbs did give my body more definition, I enjoy eating carbohydrates way too much. For me, it’s not worth the tradeoff. But my love for lettuce wraps is here to stay.

Give ’em a try – especially if you’re opting for a low-carb diet.

Avoid Fats After Your Workout.

Consuming protein and carbs after your workout is a good thing. Eating fat is not.

I love fats. Eating healthy and essential fats is an important part of any diet.

But there is one part of the day, in particular, where consuming these fats should be avoided. And that time of the day is just after your workout.

We know that it’s important to consume both protein and carbohydrates after you complete your workout. And it’s important to get them fast. In fact, the quicker the better. This is why whey protein isolate is so effective and why simple carbohydrates like dextrose are recommended – both get absorbed quickly.

Fat, on the other hand, tends to slow down the digestion process – which means that it takes more time for your body to get the proteins and carbs that it so badly needs. For this reason, most personal trainers and nutritionists will warn against consuming fat with your post-workout recovery shake or meal.

Bottom line: Essential fats are an important part of any diet – just avoid eating them after your workout.