Giving Up Carbs? 5 Things You Need to Know Before You Do

Low_Carb_DietWhen it comes to dieting, there are zillions of ways the zillions of us body complainers could lose weight. One second, your best friend's sister is saying she needs to nix salt completely. The next, your sister says she's completely cutting out sugar. But the most common thing to get the dieting ax? Carbohydrates, hands down. The Atkins diet has been tackled by loads of A-listers including Kim Kardashian and Sharon Osbourne, catching on over the last few years.

But the question is: Can a normal human being make it without carbohydrates? If you're contemplating giving up bread, pasta, and all things holy (can you tell I'm a carb fan) -- then there are some things you should definitely know upfront.

Check out our guide to 5 things you should know if you're giving up carbs (well, most carbs anyway):

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1. You'll need to eat more fat: The thing many people don't realize is the body gets most of its energy from carbohydrate intake. So, if you're getting rid of carbohydrates, you'll need to intake more actual fatty foods (think nuts, lean meats) in order to find the energy you need to function.

2. Being social may get tough: Not the actual act of socializing, of course, but a major part of giving up carbs means giving up most alcohol. Beer, wines, vodkas, you name it.

3. It can get expensive: When you're avoiding things like breads, pastas, rice, potatoes -- you'll find that a lot of the things you can eat are more expensive (again with the meats). With the exception of a carton of eggs, things like cold cuts at the grocery, fresh fish, and meats are going to cost you.

4. You may go through withdrawals: I've heard this from a lot of people I know who've gone low-carb. At first (mostly) it's super hard to function without that missing component. Not to worry, after a week or two, the benefits (increased energy and weight loss being major) will outweigh your craving for a bagel.

5. Be prepared to make a permanent change: Going low-carb may be a fad diet, but if you're successful at losing weight by cutting out carbs, then you need to know that adding them back into your diet later on could be dangerous. Use this low-carb experience as a time to realize which foods are really worth eating. Find new favorites. Experiment.

Have you ever tried to cut carbs from your diet?

 

Image via Corbis

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