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Learn about the "carbohydrate riding" diet and its benefits for weight loss

Carbohydrate cycling is a diet plan that alternates high-carb days with low-carb days. Benefits of this diet include weight loss and improved athletic performance. It allows your body to use energy from carbohydrates more efficiently, so they are not stored as fat.

According to an insider report, while some diets, such as the keto diet, seek to reduce carbohydrates in your diet, there are other options worth exploring that help make the best use of carbohydrates for a healthier body.

This technology has been used in sports nutrition for decades, but it's only recently that the system has seen mainstream appeal, and achieving results depends on understanding your body, your fitness levels, and how to adjust your diet so that it works for you, not against you.

What is a carb cycling diet?

Carb cycling is a food nutrition plan that involves alternating high-carb days and low-carb days The length of the same cycle varies from person to person and is often daily, but can also be weekly or monthly and is usually communicated through a person's training or exercise schedule.

The idea behind carb cycling is obvious that you plan to eat more carbs on active days, as your body can make better use of them as energy and at the same time, cutting carbs on the days when you're less active causes you to burn fat for fuel instead of carbs.

The role of carbohydrates in energy

To understand the basics of carbohydrate cycling, it is important to know the role that carbohydrates play in providing the body with energy, and carbohydrates, along with fats and proteins, are macronutrients that the body needs to function properly.

During digestion, carbohydrates are broken down into glucose. The pancreas then produces insulin to help move glucose from your bloodstream into your cells. From there it turns into energy.

There are two types of energy reserves for your body:

Glycogen: Glycogen acts as a short-term storage and is distributed throughout the body in the muscles and liver. When the body needs a quick boost, glycogen stores work quickly to give the body instant energy. Any excess amount of glucose is stored inside the fat cells for long-term storage.

Body fat: When your glycogen reserves are depleted because you haven't consumed many carbohydrates or you've been fasting for long periods, the body uses its fat reserves for energy in the form of ketones. Alternating carbohydrate intake days allow your body to better manage these energy reserves.

If you eat more carbohydrates on the days when you need more energy, your body uses them more efficiently and is less likely to store them as excess body fat.

When you restrict your carbohydrate intake, it means that less excess glucose is stored in fat cells. Instead of using glycogen, the body instead turns to burning fat.

Who Should Consider a Carb Riding Diet?

Due to its flexibility, some consider carb cycling to be not as restrictive as other low carb diet plans such as the keto diet and the Atkins diet. There are two main groups that can benefit from this eating plan:

Elite Athletes: Carb cycling is the go-to strategy for endurance athletes such as bodybuilders, swimmers, and marathon runners seeking to improve and enhance their performance These athletes typically follow a program based on their training schedule, body composition and energy expenditure.

Active people with weight-loss goals: While athletes have followed various forms of carb cycling for years, this strategy has become popular with people who want more control over what they eat while still getting the benefits of a low-carb diet.

However, carb cycling isn't for everyone it's still considered a strict regime that requires careful planning and is recommended by experts for short-term use only.

How does the carb cycling diet work?

The concept behind carb cycling is that it maximizes the benefits that carbs provide to your body and the diet plan is based on research linking carb intake to athletic performance and muscle recovery.