Friday, November 12, 2010


Ah, Carbs.
My doctor says that I most likely have hypoglycemia and it is kept in check by eating a low carb diet.  

I have heard of low-carb, of course I have, but I don't think I ever really thought about it.  I am one of the most health food conscious people I know.  At work they ask me what I'm eating all the time and when I tell them kale, they wonder why I'm eating a garnish.  

Being healthy for me means: vegetarian but a little fish once in awhile, taking six vitamins every day (and I just learned that I should spread them out throughout the day -- it's helped my energy level), no dairy for I'm lactose intolerant and don't like factory farming of cows, and trying to reduce my gluten intake for fear that it causes my frequent bouts of candida.  Oh yes and sugar, I try to do less of that as well for so many reasons.

Just an hour ago my doctor said to me try a low-carb diet and he said that gluten-free doesn't mean low-carb.  Hm, I wondered, what is a low-carb diet.  I know that some fruits and veggies are carbs, so what am I do to?  

Luckily for me, the internet has a zillion articles on the topic.  Below I have pasted a few of the lessons I learned today:

Bad carbs are carbohydrate foods that have been highly refined and processed, removing most of the nutritional value and fiber. They're generally loaded with high-calorie fats, sweeteners, preservatives and other unhealthy additives.

With all the processing and additives, bad carbs can be made to be temptingly tasty. But they create a dramatic surge in insulin, which can overwork your pancreas, cause you to store fat and lead to diabetes, heart disease,
obesity, stroke, arthritis and Alzheimer's disease. (Many of these run in my family so I want to be very careful.)

The article also went on to describe how back before the industrial revolution people always ate the whole grain.  In the name of progress, the grains were stripped of their oily fibrous shells which have B vitamins and necessary fiber because it was easier to store the grains long term.  I remember Guruji mentioning that it seems ironic to him that we buy food today that says 100% whole wheat because that is what it is supposed to be but in our modern baked goods we take it out, process it and then in have to put it back in-- instead the bread we buy in grocery stores should have a label that states partial wheat, or in the case of Wonder Bread or bagels-- 0% whole wheat.

The following list I have printed out and will put on the fridge to remind me (and my husband who loves his fruit juice) that these items should be used sparingly as a treat, not a staple in our diet.

The basic bad carbs list includes:

  • All candies, jelly and jams,
  • Sodas, fruit juices, fruit drinks,
  • Pudding, custards and other sweets,
  • Processed refined grains, like white rice,
  • Bread and pasta made with any refined flour,
  • Cakes, cookies and other sweet bakery products.

I do crave chocolate chip cookies and other sweets, but I also love my health and want to stay healthy, vibrant and clear long into my old age.   Therefore, I start today another promise to myself to be the change I want to see in the world.  (Thank you Mahatma Gandhiji for wonderful words to live by.)

If you would like to read more about carbs:

And a helpful Yogic Diet guide is on the Yoga Life Society website under learning center.

Enjoy the beautiful day.

Love and light,
Yoga Girl

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This blog was born through the inspiration and teachings of Rev. Jaganath Carrera and The Yoga Life Society.