A leading sport nutritionist for the global fitness franchise F45 has revealed why she swears by a method called carb cycling for weight loss success, and how to follow it to see results in weeks.
Kimberley Bowman, from California, said carb cycling is a dietary approach that works exactly how it sounds, insofar as you ‘cycle’ between days of high carbohydrate intake and low carbohydrate intake alternately.
‘The low carbohydrate days help to prevent big changes in your blood sugar, while high carb days ‘provide insulin to mantain muscle and improve thyroid hormones and leptin levels,’ Kimberley told F45.
A leading sport nutritionist for the global fitness franchise F45 has revealed why she swears by a method called carb cycling for weight loss success (Kim Bowman pictured)
Kim (pictured) said carb cycling is a dietary approach that works by ‘cycling’ between days of high carbohydrate intake and low carbohydrate intake alternately
‘Essentially, the claim of carb cycling is to fill glycogen (storage form of carbohydrate) in the muscles and liver while avoiding storing any excess glucose as fat.’
The sports nutritionist said thousands of elite athletes swear by some form of carb cycling, because it is a proven way to promote muscle gain while minimising any increase in fat at the same time.
When it comes to the diet in practice, Kimberley said on high carb days, it’s best to opt for ‘nutrient-dense, healthy complex carbs that are rich in fibre’.
Good examples include oatmeal, whole-grain bread, black beans, sweet potato, chickpeas and lentils – as these will keep you full for a decent amount of time while also not spiking your blood sugar.
On low-carb days, good food examples include non-starchy veg, like brococli, cauliflower, zucchini, capsicum, spinach and asparagus.
‘Non-starchy vegetables still provide glucose and energy, however, do not provide large spikes and dips in blood sugar,’ Kimberley said.
Typically, Kim (pictured) said carb cycling is done in a consecutive weekly or monthly basis, and on a high carb day it’s 45-50 per cent carbs, and on a low day it’s 20-25 per cent
Typically, carb cycling is done in a consecutive weekly or monthly basis.
For example, Kimberley said on a Sunday and Monday, you might have a ‘high carb day’ where 45-50 per cent of your total daily intake is from carbs.
Then, on Tuesday or Wednesday, you should consume a ‘moderate’ amount of carbs – or around 30-35 per cent of your today daily intake as carbs.
‘Thursday to Saturday are low carb days, or 20-25 per cent of your total daily intake as carbs,’ Kimberley said.
The sports nutritionist (pictured) said thousands of elite athletes swear by some form of carb cycling, because it is a proven way to promote muscle gain while minimising any increase in fat
Carb cycling: The facts
* In order to optimise their diets, people often now ‘cycle’ their carbohydrates in something that is known as ‘carb cycling’.
* Carb cycling is a dietary approach in which you alternate carb intake on a daily, weekly or monthly basis.
* It is commonly used to lose fat, maintain physical performance while dieting, or overcome a weight loss plateau.
* A sample day on a plate on a high carb day includes:
Breakfast: 3 boiled eggs, 3 slices Ezekiel (or 7 seed/grain) bread, tomatoes, mushrooms and a side bowl of mixed fruit (60 g carbs).
Lunch: 6 oz sweet potato, 6 oz lean meat or fish, mixed vegetables (45 g carbs).
Pre-Workout: 1 serving oatmeal, almond milk, 1 cup berries, 1 scoop whey protein (50 g carbs).
Dinner: 1 serving wholemeal rice, 6 oz lean chicken, homemade tomato sauce, 1 serving kidney beans, mixed vegetables (70 g carbs).
* A sample day on a plate on a moderate carb day includes:
Breakfast: Grass-fed high-protein yogurt, 1 cup mixed berries, stevia, 1 spoon seed mix (25 g carbs).
Lunch: 6 oz chicken salad with 4 oz diced potatoes (25 g carbs).
Pre-Workout: 1 banana with whey protein shake (30 g carbs).
Dinner: 1 serving sweet potato fries, 6 oz lean beef, homemade tomato sauce, 1 serving kidney beans, mixed vegetables (40 g carbs).
* A sample day on a plate on a low carb day includes:
Breakfast: 3 eggs with 3 slices bacon and mixed vegetables (10 g carbs).
Lunch: 6 oz salmon salad with 1 spoon olive oil (10 g carbs).
Snack: 1 oz mixed nuts with 1 serving turkey slices (10 g carbs).
Dinner: 6 oz steak, half avocado, mixed vegetables (16 g carbs).
Kimberley (pictured) previously shared how to hit your goal weight without hitting a weight loss plateau, and to do this you need to avoid processed carbs and also up your fibre levels
Previously, Kimberley has shared how to hit your goal weight when you hit a weight loss plateau.
‘When it comes to weight loss plateaus, one of the first things to avoid eating all forms of, is processed carbohydrates – including refined sugar,’ Kimberley told Body and Soul.
On the flip side, you should increase your consumption of fibre through wholegrains like rolled oats and fruit and vegetables.
Finally, Kimberley said if you’re no longer seeing results, you should change up your workouts so you get out of your ‘training comfort zone’.
‘By engaging in various movements, we start to utilise different muscle groups which keep our body guessing (less likely to hit a plateau),’ she told the publication.
If you’re used to high intensity workouts, it might be time to switch to light weights.