How To Lose Weight: The Carb Cycling Diet And What To Know

In theory, weight loss is simple: burn more calories than you consume. But in practice, it’s not that easy. Plus, the plethora of popular diets, like paleo, gluten-free, and Atkins, makes it harder to know which is right for you.

One popular, but slightly complicated, diet that is great for weight loss is carb cycling, which as explains, allows you to eat varying amounts of carbohydrates each day. Author Katy Widrick examines the basic principles of the diet as the eating plan has gotten more complex with new variations.

The first day of the diet is designated as low carb, meaning you can eat some starches, but no more than 75 grams of carbohydrates can be eaten for the day. If you really want to push yourself, Widrick suggests shooting for only 50 grams.

Day two allows for high calorie intake, but don’t use it as an excuse to have a cheat day! You’ll still have to exhibit some restraint as gluten, dairy, soy and alcohol aren’t allowed. You can have more snacks, as long as you’re not downing ice cream, and large portion sizes for meals. Compared to the first day, aim for 50 percent more calories on this day of feasting.

Things take a turn for the extreme on day three. You can either opt to treat it as a no carb or no food day. If you nix the carbs, Widrick recommends eating less than 25 grams of carbohydrates for all of your daily meals combined. To stay satiated, you’ll want to eat plenty of lean proteins, fiber-filled vegetables and healthy fats.

If you decide to fast, no food is allowed. At all. Instead, you’ll drink plenty of water and herbal tea for a set time frame. Some choose to fast for a full 24 hours, while others may skip eating from breakfast until dinner.

Day four is considered a normal eating day, as long as your typical day doesn’t consist of cake and pizza. Eat a mix of healthy, complex carbs, lean protein and healthy fats, as advised by Fix.

The last day is similar to the normal eating day with a recommended combination of healthy foods, but with a reduced calorie intake of about 25 percent.

While the diet isn’t a straightforward, eat this, not that approach, the benefit is that you can pick and choose what you want to eat to fit into the daily guidelines. Low-carb diets can often cause cravings, dips in energy and fitness performance issues. Cycling aims to combat those by giving the body metabolism boosts to lower body fat and increase performance. And for those who have had trouble on other plans or have hit a plateau, this is a great way to lose those last few pounds.

Fix has more information to get you started:

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