Here are 5 ways a low carb lifestyle can jeopardize your health if not rightly executed.
Every weight loss method has risks particularly if it is not well executed. Let’s say you’ve done your due diligence on dieting and nutrition and you decided that the low carb lifestyle is for you. You’ve been to the doctor and run the tests and had a physical—all that stuff and you’re good to go. A low carb lifestyle is the way to go but there are still risks and things that you may not like a far as the low carb lifestyle goes.
Before you jump on the bandwagon, here are some hazards of a low carb lifestyle that you should look out for;
1. A low carb lifestyle can deplete healthy glycogen reserves in the liver and muscles.
Lack of carbs in a low carb lifestyle can deplete glycogen stores leading to considerable weight loss in the first week. Although this is mostly interpreted as loss of fat, it is mostly as a result of dehydration. In fact the initial weight loss is a prominent reason why the low carb lifestyle is so popular. The quick initial drop in weight is so encouraging and deceptive. So make sure to be drinking lots of water.
2. When muscle glycogen is depleted it makes you vulnerable to fatigue and this makes exercise and even movement uncomfortable and strenuous.
Numerous reliable studies have shown that muscle fatigue is accelerated by depletion of muscle glycogen. This leads to loss of energy making you move less (most people don’t even realize this). This can lead to a sedentary lifestyle. This is neither good for your basal metabolic rate, (metabolism) nor caloric burn. In the absence of carbohydrates, the human body initially uses fat and protein muscle. Apart from lack of energy, loss of muscle also causes muscles and skin to become saggy and lack tone.
3. A large percentage of people that initially lose weight while starting a low carb lifestyle regain the weight.
This is primarily because of two reasons;
A)The initial weight loss is going to be water weight. With the loss of calorie intake comes the lowering of the metabolism over time. That means your body will burn calories at a reduced rate. You will then start losing the weight slower and depression sets in and then failure.
I hear this all the time “I went on that diet and didn’t lose a pound and look at all that good food I missed out on”
B) Little do these people know, but if they would stick with it for a while, once your body adapts to the low carb lifestyle, they will quickly regain all the healthy fluid that is lost thanks to glycogen depletion.
C) It requires a high level of self control that most people are not capable to maintain a low carb lifestyle for the long-term. This is because this diet will require you to totally change your lifestyle by making a conscious effort and plan to avoid carbohydrates.
4. While changing to a low carb lifestyle you will notice frequent urination.
Expect your trips to the bathroom to become more frequent. The reason, your body is burning up stored glucose in your muscles and in your liver. The process of breaking down glycogen releases a lot of water which is expelled from the body through urination. As your carbohydrate intake reduces and the glycogen reserves reduce. Your kidneys will respond by dumping this excess water.
Additionally less carbohydrate intake will also lead to a significant drop in insulin levels. This will stimulate kidneys to produce excess sodium that will lead to frequent urination.
5. Be prepared for increased fatigue and dizziness especially when you get started on a low carb lifestyle change.
As you begin urinating frequently, you will also lose essential minerals such as magnesium, salt and potassium. Reduced lower levels of these essential minerals can make a person extremely tired, dizzy and light headed. Low mineral levels also cause headaches, muscle cramps and can also cause skin itchiness.
Extreme fatigue and dizziness can be prevented by ensuring you stay ahead of mineral loss. You can easily counteract mineral loss by increasing salt intake through sipping salty broth and consuming foods rich in potassium. Foods rich in potassium include green leafy vegetables, dairy foods and avocados. It is also advisable to take magnesium nitrate supplements.
To ensure that you don’t compromise your health, ensure that you only increase mineral intake after talking to a doctor especially if have history of kidney and heart problems.
Although changing to a low carb lifestyle is helpful in losing weight and keeping the weight off when done consistently. You need to be aware of these hazards and find a way to at least get around them so that your health is not jeopardized.