Table of Contents
Carb Conscious is made for those who:
• Habitually consume processed carbs
• Generally crave bread, pasta, cereal, or chips over sweet foods
• Are looking to improve their insulin or cholesterol levels
Some say your body works like a machine. Others say it operates like a car. Whatever metaphor you prefer, one thing is for sure: the wrong fuel source can lead to operation failure.
You can think of our main fuel source as carbohydrates. Out of the three macronutrients our body needs, carbs are its preferred energy source. Of course, there are better types of carbs to fuel your body with than others, but which one should you choose? Complex or simple carbs? Which carbohydrate choices are best for sustained weight loss? Which carbohydrate choices are the best for disease prevention and overall longevity? The Carb Conscious diet plan satisfies these concerns and more as it guides you in your journey to making better carbohydrate choices.
On the carb consicous plan:
• Carbs and fat drive BITES up
• Fiber and protein drive BITES down
How to Get Started
We know that starting a new diet is challenging so we created a step-by-step list of things to keep in mind as you ease your way into this new way of eating.
1. Go Easy on Yourself
New diets take a while to get used to and you may not be successful from the get-go. If you go over your BITE allowance the first day, do not be discouraged. Your body will need time to adjust. It may take some experimenting but eventually you will find what works best for you!
2. Plan Meals Strategically
Zero BITE foods should be prioritized in your meals in order to add bulk to your plate without draining your BITES. Use non-Zero BITE foods strategically to fill in the rest of your plate. A good rule of thumb is to have 1/2 of your plate as non-starchy vegetables, 1/4 of your plate as whole grains, and the other 1/4 as a lean protein source.
3. Use Your Weeklies
Members lose best on this plan when they utilize at least 50-100%of the Weeklies each week (with some using them all). They are simply set aside as Weeklies to divide as you need. (PRO users can turn on secondary calorie tracking to help make sure you are hitting your daily calorie targets.)
4. Read the Labels
When shopping for healthy, complex carbs, start with the food label. Make sure that "whole grain" or "whole wheat" are at the top of the ingredient list. If instead you see terms like "enriched", "refined", or "bleached", you can be certain that the product is highly processed and probably a bad carb choice.
5. Drink Water
There are many benefits to drinking water. Fiber works best in the body when accompanied with an ample supply of water. Aim for at least 8-10 cups a day, but this number may increase depending on the heat, exercise, and medications. Check with your doctor if you aren't sure.
To get the most out of the Carb Conscious weight loss plan, it is best to choose foods that are high in fiber.
Key Food Guidelines
● Choose complex over simple carbs. The complex ones supply you with longer lasting energy and more fiber.
● Go with unrefined grains. The darker the grain, the more vitamins and minerals it has.
● Be thoughtful at restaurants. Find a plate that doesn't skimp on the fruit and veggies.
1 Day Sample Meal Plan
Breakfast: Blueberry Chia Oats
● 1/2 cup old fashion oats
● 1/2 cup fresh blueberries
● 1 banana
● 1 tbsp. chia seeds
● 1 cup water
● 1/4 cup low-fat milk
● 1 dash cinnamon honey to taste
Star your day off right with a fiber filled meal. This bowl boasts 10 grams of fiber (about a third of the recommended daily intake) to insure you'll stay full the entire morning.
Lunch: Vegetable Soup
● 1/4 cup yellow onions
● 1/2 cup sliced carrots
● 1/4 cup celery
● 1 clove garlic
● 1 cup vegetable broth
● 1/2 cup diced potatoes
● 1/2 can diced tomatoes
● 1/4 cup green beans
● 1/2 cup frozen or fresh corn parsley to taste
Try out this low BITE and flavor packed, vegetable soup! Throwing your favorite veggies into a broth or stock is a great way to strategically manage your BITES allowance.
Dinner: Chicken with Avocado Sauce
● 4 oz. chicken breast
● 2 tbsp. blackened seasoning
● 1/2 cup barley
● 1/4 cup avocado
● 1/4 cup plain greek yogurt
● 1 tsp. lemon juice
● 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
● Dash of salt
Change up your average blackened chicken with this creamy avocado sauce variation. Pair this meal with a smart carbohydrate choice, such as barley, to give you a stable stream of energy.
Best in Show: Avocado Toast
● 1 slice 100% whole wheat bread
● 1/2 medium avocado
● Salt and Pepper
Avocado toast comes in as one of the best snack options on this plan. Not only do you get the stable energy from the whole wheat bread, the avocado will fill your body with healthy fats that will keep you full. Simply toast a slice of bread, spread the avocado paste, and season with salt and pepper. To finish it off, top it with your favorite, Zero-BITE, veggies!
Tangy Cucumber Salad
● 1 fresh english cucumber
● 1/2 tbs olive oil
● 1 tbs. apple cider vinegar
● 1 tsp. granulated sugar
● Black pepper
Low-Fat Granola Bars
● 1 low fat granola bar
Can also make your own
Strawberries & Cream
● 1/2 cup lite cool whip
● 1/2 cup low-fat strawberry yogurt
● 1/2 cup strawberries
How to be Successful
Lastly, here are a few key habits that will undoubtedly help you find success in your weight loss journey.
1. Get Moving
Exercising doesn’t have to be a chore. Find something you enjoy that gets your blood pumping. It’s a great way to let off some steam and release those coveted endorphins. Another plus: in-putting your activity into the app will grant you extra BITES!
2. Connect with the Community
We all need a little motivation here and there. Check out the community feature in the Healthi app to get your questions answered, find recipe inspiration, or receive praise on a recent milestone you achieved. We’re all in this together.
3. Track your Progress
It’s important to document your weight loss (or maintenance) journey. After all, that is why Healthi was created in the first place! Make it a habit to input your weight onto the app on a consistent basis and check out the weight trend graph (located on the profile tab) to see exactly how far you’ve come!
When you’ve come to a place in your journey when you’ve been hitting your goals and feel especially accomplished, it’s okay to celebrate! Pat yourself on the back and reward yourself! It’s important to let loose and remember to have fun.
The Science Behind It
Fiber can be defined as a plant constituent that cannot be degraded by the stomach. Choosing complex carb sources containing fiber is most commonly known to help with digestion; however, it also offers benefits in terms of weight management and disease prevention.
Fiber for Weight Management
Intake of fiber will promote that feeling of fullness through gastric distension from the gel-like complex that arises from soluble fiber or activation of stretch receptors that signal fullness from insoluble fiber. Fiber also has a low energy density (less than 2 calories per gram as opposed to the 9 calories per gram in fat). That means, you could consume much more fiber for the same amount of calories in fat. In addition, fiber is thought to induce the production of satiety signaling gut hormone glucagon-like peptide1. If you’re still not convinced, a study conducted by Rebello and other researchers from Louisiana State University compared the satiety impact of oatmeal versus a low fiber breakfast cereal and found that oatmeal had a significantly greater increase in fullness and hunger reduction in comparison to the low fiber cereal. Now if you’re an oatmeal fanatic, that’s great. But if not, there are a ton of other high fiber foods that can produce that same effect.
Fiber for Disease Prevention
Fiber has been suspected to play a large role in disease prevention. In a systematic review of 58 clinical trials conducted by Reynolds from the university of Otago in New Zealand and other medical researchers, there was a suggested 15-30% decrease in the incidence of coronary heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and colorectal cancer when comparing high dietary fiber consumers with the low fiber consumers.
Most of the research points to fiber having a big impact on diabetes management and prevention through its ability to increase insulin sensitivity and alter gut microbiota to produce beneficial hormonal and molecular factors in the subject. In fact, according to researchers Weickert and Pfeiffer, large prospective cohort studies consistently show associations of a high dietary fiber intake (>25 g/d in women and >38 g/d in men) with a 20–30% reduced risk of developing type 2 diabetes!
Fiber intake and cholesterol levels are also closely associated. In a metaanalysis of 14 studies, subjects who received a median dose of ß-glucan (a soluble fiber) for four weeks saw significantly reduced LDL cholesterol and non-LDL cholesterol levels. ß-glucan sounds like a foreign entity, but it is the same fiber that is found in healthy carbohydrates such as barley and oats! Intake of fiber could help one manage their cholesterol levels and ultimately prevent cardiovascular disease.
Lastly, there seems to be a protective association with dietary fiber intake and cancer risk. Proposed mechanisms include fibers potential to bind to harmful and carcinogenic substances in the gut and promote their discharge and decomposition. Furthermore, fiber has the possibility to promote the growth probiotics and inhibit the growth of pathogenic bacteria, thereby inhibiting production of carcinogens and promoting their decomposition in the intestine. A meta-analysis of 24 epidemiological studies conducted by Chen and other medical researchers found that every 10 g/d increment in dietary fiber intake was associated with a 4% reduction in breast cancer risk!
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