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Dec 10

Weight Loss: When Should I eat My Carbs?

A very common question that we receive from our Personal Training clients in Napa has to do has to do with what are the best times to consume your carbohydrates?  In this article, we’ll explore some commonly ask questions about when and why to eat carbohydrates to create the best lean muscle building and fat burning scenarios.

Should I consume carbs in the morning or just not eat carbs at all in the morning?

After you wake up from sleeping, you essentially wake up from an 8-hour fast, when your body is deprived of nutrients for that period. This is a very convenient time for your body to absorb vitamins and nutrients and is also when the body needs to reset hormone and blood sugar concentration levels.  When your body is sleeping, different cells are being broken down to be used as energy to help reset different immune system cells and hormone concentration. Therefore, when consuming a carbohydrate in the morning, your cells will be taking in these carbohydrates and utilizing them as energy to help rebuild the different cells that have been broken down in the catabolic state that your body goes into while sleeping.

Why should I eat carbohydrates earlier on the day as opposed to later in the day?

Certain carbohydrates will elicit an insulin response. We’ve spoken time and time again how insulin can be a useful tool  which will either cause a cell to absorb sugar throughout the bloodstream and utilize it as a fuel source to rebuild certain connective tissue cells.  But we have also spoken about how insulin can be used when your body is in and rest and digest phase to tell fat cells to absorb sugar throughout the bloodstream and then be used as fat storage underneath the skin.  Shifting your carbohydrate consumption to the morning after you wake up will help counter act the effect of producing insulin at a rest and digest phase. Your body is an insulin sensitive state when you wake up. Due to the lack of calorie consumption and interaction of your muscles using excess sugar in the bloodstream to rebuild connective tissue cells, your body is ready to utilize insulin as a catalyst to help connective tissue rebuild in the fasted state you’re in after you wake up from a long night’s rest.

I am decreasing my overall calorie consumption, but I’m having a hard time losing weight?  (Are you eating your carbs at night time)?

Avoiding carbohydrates at night time will decrease the amount of insulin that you produced before you go to bed. Before you go to bed, your body goes into a rest and digest state. This means that your body is not going to be in the absorptive state that it usually is first thing in the morning or right after you perform strenuous physical activity (like exercising!). When your body is in an absorbing of state, your body will use free-floating sugar throughout the blood to produce energy. Later on in the day, your body is going to be in an insulin resistant state. That means that any increase in insulin will creates absorption of sugar into fat cells, which lead to ugly fat that is stored in the love handle area(or many other areas where you don’ t like your fat to be stored!).  In addition, your energy levels are decreased as well. This means that calories will not be utilized at this time of the day. If the calories are not utilized when there’s lower activity levels, carbohydrates will go straight to storage.

Increasing mindfulness on when you are consuming a specific type of food is a critical component to weight loss and maintaining your Life Time Fitness goals.  If you have questions, please feel free to reach out to us at napatenacious@gmail.com and we would be delighted to give you a few pointer on losing weight and achieving your Life Time Fitness goals here in Napa!