Remember the 90's? The world-wide web was invented, Google was born and fanny packs were all the rage--and apparently still are.
It was also the time when fats were considered bad, really bad. In fact, it was fashionable to buy fat-free everything even fat-free mayo was a thing. Today the "really bad" crown has gone to carbohydrates, while fats are becoming stylish in the keto industry. I'm glad the world changed its stance on fats. The myelin sheath that protects your nerves are coated in fat. Lack of high quality fats break-down this myelin sheath, without them I'd be getting on your nerves right about now!
The mindset today is to count calories and carbohydrates. We become mathematicians and excessively focus with tunnel vision on these two when looking at the back of the label. The problem is that it is not the quantity of macronutrients we should be concerned about, the quality of these macronutrients. The intake of toxins, as we have learned so far, causes a cascade of reactions in the body that promote fat storage, inflammation, and oxidative stress.
The super-nutrient we need is fiber and It's a type of carbohydrate. Gasp!
Fiber is a super-nutrient because t’s found in so many different foods. Eating a fiber-rich diet is associated with better gastrointestinal health and a reduced risk of heart attacks, strokes, high cholesterol, obesity, type 2 diabetes, even some cancers. That’s because fiber is fantastic in many ways: It slows the absorption of glucose — which evens out our blood sugar levels — and also lowers cholesterol and inflammation. More on that in a second...
Antioxidants in carbohydrates
But first let's talk about other important stuff found in carbohydrates, antioxidants! These are abundant compounds primarily found in fresh fruits and vegetables, and evidence for their role in the prevention of degenerative diseases is continuously emerging.
Antioxidants and polyphenols are commonly found in nature bound to macronutrients such as carbohydrates, fats, and proteins. In fruits, and vegetables, carbohydrates are the major component that makes up their matrix. It turns out you need the fibers found in these fruits and vegetables to make the antioxidants bioavailable, that's because once in your gut they bind to macromolecules such as fiber that improve their bioavailability.
Fiber is your shuttle
Fiber is able to safely and effectively transport polyphenols to the colon where these compounds may have a protective effect on colon health as they are released during plant fiber fermentation by gut bacteria. That means the more nutrients you get for your gut bacteria including antioxidants, polyphenols and fibers, the higher the reward for your system, this will boost your immunity, prevent signs of aging, and lend to better overall health and weight-loss success.What else gets transported?
Your precious bacteria!! Did you know that an apple is an amazing prebiotic? Meaning that it has high amounts of insoluble fibre...it also contains about 100 million beneficial bacteria per apple (inside the apple, and some in the seeds) . The bacteria in our food transiently colonize our gut thanks to the fiber that is used as a shuttle.
Cooking kills most of these beneficial bacteria, which is what we do with most vegetables. But fruit we tend to eat raw.
No more meal math: Eating high-quality foods—including plenty of high quality fats—is the new golden rule of weight loss. When you eat the right quality and balance of foods, your body can do the rest on its own.
Processed carbohydrates—foods like chips, soda, crackers, and even white rice—digest quickly into sugar. Sugar is not the problem, the problem is that the toxins found in these foods create inflammation and hinder your overall ability to use sugars as energy. Processed foods have a lot of artificial colors that create inflammation, artificial flavors that are hormone disruptors, preservatives that kill your gut bacteria, heavy metals that are a wrecking ball to your entire system, and lots of glyphosate that hurts your liver enzymes along with your thyroid for metabolism.
So let's save our math for counting sheep, zzzzz. And pay more attention to toxins that hinder your health.