Pretty interesting article (yes, I know I overuse that word, article) I’ve found (aka a friend posted it on facebook): “One twin gave up sugar, the other gave up fat. Their experiment could change YOUR life”.
The twins grew up in the United Kingdom, but a few years after one of them moved to the US, he had gained more weight than he would have liked. So they agreed to do an experiment, and since their genes were the same, they could truly test what type of food has the most effect on weight loss.
Essentially what they describe is that you will lose more weight by reducing carbohydrate intake in your diet, but in doing so you will also negatively impact your energy levels, both mental and physical. You’ll have a harder time focusing (since your brain can’t run on fat) and your body may even start to cannibalize its own muscle mass for energy. You’ll also be hungry more often. You need both fat and sugar. But not too much of either. Moderation!
They determine that it’s the combination of the two together that’s the real problem.
For any diet to work you have to be able to keep it up for the rest of your life [emphasis added]. I thought I would stick to low carbs after we finished, but having my first meal with carbs – and the boost in energy and alertness it gave me – reminded me that for a month I had been under-performing in all areas of my life, and I’d felt dreadful.
So, what were our conclusions? If you want to lose weight it will be much easier if you avoid processed foods made with sugar and fat. These foods affect your brain in a completely different way from natural foods and it’s hard for anyone to resist eating too much.
And any diet that eliminates fat or sugar will be unpalatable, hard to sustain and probably be bad for your health, too.
So, there you have it. You need carbs for energy. You need fat for satiety and muscle mass. The key is avoiding processed foods and fat/sugar combo meals.