You may be one of the many people who have been told by a health professional, that the answer to your health issues is to lose weight. One of the ways to do that, you may have been told is to cut back on carbs. So should you really stop eating bread to lose weight?
Related reading; How to break your food addiction in 3 steps
How to break free from diets and still lose weight
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What’s wrong with eating bread?
Unfortunately the message we receive is that we are to cut out all carbs. Carbs are the problem foods that cause us to gain weight. The issue is, it is not all carbs that are the problem. Beans, legumes like chickpeas, lentils, black eyed beans are needed in our diet for blood sugar stability. The problem is when we are eating the wrong type of carbs.
Highly processed carbs, like white bread, sugary cereals, white rice, pasta and bagels, makes our blood sugar rapidly rise and then drop which can lead to weight gain.
It leads to weight gain, because when our blood sugar drops rapidly we feel hungry and we keep craving more and more carbs to feel full and content. Unfortunately, processed carbs are full of sugar and wheat. They contain hardly any fibre so are called empty calories.
Processed carbohydrates cause inflammation in the gut which can lead to disease. We digest refined carbs a lot quicker than protein or vegetables and this leads to a high level of blood sugar and then a quick crash.
Processed carbs can lead to something called metabolic syndrome, which is associated with an increased risk for heart disease, stroke and diabetes.
Metabolic syndrome is “the combination of high triglycerides and low HDL cholesterol, insulin resistance and obesity,” explained Dr. David Ludwig, professor of nutrition at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.
Dr. David Ludwig’s findings are that “overeating doesn’t make you fat; the process of getting fat makes you overeat” shifts the mentality from one of shame, blame, and guilt to one of compassion and empowerment
Related reading; 5 psychological tips to lose weight
The benefits of stopping eating bread.
- We stabilise our bloody sugar levels so stop craving more bread
- Our digestion improves. By eating more veggies and protein we are feeding the good bacteria and thus improving our immune system and using our fat reserves for energy instead of glucose.
- More energy. It’s a stable, subtle, sustainable energy that we will notice. We will be able to keep going for longer.
How to cut carbs from your diet
Remember, you only want to cut back on your refined or processed carbohydrates. I call it white food. Processed carbs are foods taken from their natural state, that have had something added to them, chemicals added to help preserve them for longer, they have gone through a process, like cooking to be in the form for us to eat.
To cut out bread, here are some tips.
- Replace your carbs
Find alternatives with proteins, fruit and or veg. Look at recipe books and the keto diet.
- Have fruit
Have lots of fruit in the house so that when you get a carby craving, you can pick up a piece of fruit instead. This could be an apple, orange or grapes.
- Find an alternative bread solution.
Some of the ideas are below
Weight -loss friendly bread substitutions
- Fermented bread
This is a sourdough bread. They contain more nutrients than normal bread and because of the fermentation process, have pro and pre-biotic properties that help with your gut health.
- Seeded and whole grain bread
This type of bread will have the whole grain intact so will have more nutrients. The seeds are full of fibre and good for your gut health as well.
- Sprouted bread
Sprouts are seeds that have sprouted and are packed with vitamins and minerals. They are full of energy.
- Bran, barley or rye bread
These breads do not use wheat so are better for your gut health. They are usually easier to digest than wheat. They are also fibre rich, which is good for your gut health.
How therapy helps
You may be caught up in the carb trap, of eating sugary carbs, getting a high from them then crashing and this causes you to want to eat more, usually more carbs as a quick fill.
With eating this way comes feelings of shame and anger at yourself for eating the same foods and not being able to break the cycle.
There is normally an emotional reason behind our eating habits, stress and trauma can all contribute. If you have been eating this way for a while and you know you eat emotionally, the therapist can help you to work out what is behind your eating. They can help you with visualisations and finding new habits to help you to stop eating bread to lose weight. The therapist will help you to heal your past and your eating starts to get better.