Most people are shocked when I explain that the majority of calories in The “Plan A” Diet come from carbs…especially when they learn that it’s OK to eat potatoes!
But here’s the thing…
NOT ALL CARBS are created equal
There are two types of carbs:
Complex (whole) and Refined (processed)
Complex carbs include whole foods – potatoes, yams, corn, beans, rice, squash, barley, veggies, fruit, legumes, and whole grains. Our bodies are physically designed for complex carbs! Carbohydrates are the body’s preferred source of fuel and our main source of energy.
Our good gut bacteria thrive on the fiber found ONLY in complex carbs/plant foods. Plus our brains are dependent on getting enough complex carbs.
Refined carbs include processed items made with stripped/enriched flours, added fats and oils, refined sugars, and sodium – such as donuts, hot dog buns, snack cakes, corn chips, toaster pastries and soda pop.
As Dr. John McDougall loves to point out: (Complex) carbs don’t make you fat – fat makes you fat.
To illustrate this point, consider a baked potato
Only 1% of the calories in a potato come from fat. That is, however, until we fry that potato in grease to make French fries (46% fat) or convert it into potato chips (56% fat). Or until we smother that potato with butter, cheese, sour cream, and bacon bits – which not only adds a big dose of fat, but lots of cholesterol too.
So the complex carb potato at 1% fat is NOT adding to our weight struggles. Our troubles begin when we convert that potato into a refined carb junk food, or douse it with high fat toppings.
It’s a Common Misconception…
….that the sugars in starches are readily converted into fat, which is then stored in our abdomen, hips and buttocks. But the independent research tells a totally different story.
After eating, our bodies break down the complex carbohydrates of starchy foods into simple sugars. These sugars are absorbed into the blood stream where they are transported to trillions of cells throughout the body for energy. Any excess carbs are stored invisibly in the muscles and liver in the form of glycogen, and are burned off as body heat and through physical movement.
Turning sugars into fat is a process called ‘de novo lipogenesis,’ and the human body doesn’t do that under normal circumstances since it’s very inefficient at doing so.
The FAT we eat, however, is very easily stored. The body is such an quick and efficient fat-storing machine that biopsies of the hip, abdomen, or buttocks can reveal exactly what form of fat you’ve just ingested (chicken, oils, fish, etc.).
The biggest reason carbs have gotten a bad rap is because both types of carbs – complex and refined – have been lumped into one evil category, causing much of society to develop a condition called “Carbophobia” (the intense or obsessive avoidance of anything carbohydrate related).
Another reason is that today’s mainstream diet plans (the high-protein, high-fat varieties), erroneously claim that eating complex carbs is detrimental to good health. Those plans lead to a myriad of health problems down the road, many of which are quite serious.
Please don’t fall prey to Carbophobia! Choose healthy, complex carbs but avoid the refined junk foods.
Remember there’s a big difference between a bowl of black bean chili (complex carb) and a slice of glazed coffee cake (refined carb).
And yes, this plan is ideal and absolutely SAFE for diabetics.
Try These Fries!
So, go ahead and enjoy a plate of whole-grain pasta topped with marinara and steamed asparagus, or serve up your favorite potatoes topped with golden gravy, no-fat cheese sauce, your favorite salsa, or other ideas spelled out in The “Plan A” Diet book. And don’t forget those Fit Fries and Sweet Potato Wedges (recipes below).
By the way, if you’re interested in a time saver, this “potato bag” microwaves potatoes in 4 minutes (or a bit longer for larger potatoes); it keeps the moisture in and does a great job!
Fit Fries: 2 Large Russet Potatoes or other variety, cut into French fry size (or use a French fry cutter). Add to a bowl, mist with water if necessary, then add these pre-combined spices: 1/2 tsp each of chili powder, garlic powder, cumin, and sea salt. Arrange in a single layer on a parchment (or silpat) lined baking sheet. Bake at 450 for 25-30 minutes, flipping half way through.
Roasted Sweet Potato Wedges: 2 medium Sweet Potatoes, cut into wedges. Add to a bowl, then add these pre-combined spices: 1/8 tsp cinnamon, 1/8 tsp. black pepper, and 1/4 tsp. each of cumin, garlic powder, and seasoned salt. Arrange on a parchment (or silpat) lined baking sheet. Bake at 450 for 20 minutes or until tender.
Experiment with spices to your heart’s desire!
Interested to learn more?
Check out this free webinar titled “How to Get Off the Diet Roller Coaster and Protect Your Health – Without Sacrificing the Foods You Love!”
No fluff, no filler, no sales pitch. Just pure content. And in the webinar, you’ll learn 3 things:
- How to shed 1-3 pounds per week – and KEEP it off – without counting calories or points or eating tiny portions.
- Why ditching this one highly-processed food helps accelerate your weight loss AND protect your health.
- How to reduce or eliminate medications with this one food component that most people lack.