Low Carbohydrate Dieters: Beware of High Protein Intake
Most of us have heard something about low carb dieting. Whether it is the Atkins Diet or the Paleo Diet, carbohydrate restriction is becoming more popular as more people experience dramatic weight loss.
Not only does excessive dietary protein burden the digestive system, it can also contribute to the production of sugar in the body and even inhibit the body’s ability to naturally detoxify!
Eating a low carb diet doesn’t mean that you have to overload your plate with protein at every meal! Moderating protein in your diet can help you to live longer, limit sugar, and even improve daily digestion.
Weight loss is not the only benefit of carbohydrate restriction.
When done correctly, a low carb diet can help to control blood sugar, and it can even reverse insulin resistance, helping to heal disorders that are related to a sugar-heavy diet, such as polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).
Low carb diets can also help to cool down chronic inflammatory disorders, such as rheumatoid arthritis and several autoimmune conditions.
Part of the overall success of a low carb diet is that:
- Many of our processed foods are carbohydrate-rich: Processed foods, which are full of refined oils and sugar, are hazardous for anyone’s health.
- Carb-heavy foods are often full of common immune system triggers: Several food allergies and immune system disorders are actually rooted in the proteins found in grain-based carbohydrates. One example is wheat gluten.
3 Reasons to Limit Your Protein Intake
Reason #1 to Moderate Your Protein Intake: Live Longer
Bacteria and other disease-causing microorganisms need certain amino acids for their survival. Amino acids come from protein-rich foods.
In our own bodies, protein provides us with building blocks to produce things like cells, greater muscle mass, and even neurotransmitters. However, a moderate amount of protein is enough to do the job.
When we restrict our protein and occasionally even eliminate it for a day or two, we actually give our immune system the chance to perform something called autophagy.
Autophagy is a recycling process. “Junk proteins,” which have lost function, can accumulate in our body. When protein is scarce or when we restrict dietary protein, cells turn on this recycling process called autophagy. They begin to break down these junk proteins into usable amino acids.
Autophagy has been found to improve the health of cells and to promote longevity. (2) (3)
Reason #2 to Moderate Your Protein Intake: Limit Sugar
As dieters learn to restrict carbohydrates, they tend to over-consume protein. An assortment of meat begins to find its way on their plate, replacing old favorites, like breads and pasta.
When the body needs to raise its levels of blood sugar, it turns to liver. This is because the liver has the ability to convert the amino acids that are found in protein into sugar. This process is called gluconeogenesis.
An excess amount of protein may be turned into sugar to feed systemic infections in the body and lead to autoimmune diseases. Much research is now centered on how diabetes may start in the gut.
Reason #3 to Moderate Your Protein Intake: Improve Digestion
It takes a lot of energy to digest animal-based proteins. Most of us are not even equipped with enough hydrochloric acid to handle the massive amounts of animal proteins that we consume on a daily basis.
Some of the most popular medications on the market today are those that control the production of stomach acid. These are drugs like proton pump inhibitors and over-the-counter medications, like Tums.
If you are not producing enough stomach acid, it is essential to take a properly balanced supplemental form of hydrochloric acid (HCL) like Assist Dairy and Protein. When digestion is smooth, food does not have the chance to sit in the gut and ferment.
This is why the Body Ecology Diet recommends to:
- Always eat protein with non-starchy vegetables or sea vegetables.
- Limit protein to 20% of the food on your plate.
- Stop eating once you are 80% full.
Practice proper food combing principles, and you will be able to give your body all the nourishment it needs. Taking care not to overdo your protein intake could add healthy years to your life.
What to Remember Most About This Article:
The low carb diet has become increasingly popular within the past several decades as it has led to dramatic weight loss for many dieters. But when considering a low carb diet plan, it’s important to understand that there is also a danger in eating too much protein in the diet.
Here are the top three reasons to limit your protein intake, even on a low carb diet plan:
- Live Longer: Too much protein in the diet will create excess in the body, which will feed disease-causing bacteria.
- Limit Sugar: Eating too much protein on a low carb diet plan will cause the liver to convert the amino acids found in protein into sugar, which can feed systemic infections in the body.
- Improve Digestion: The body requires a large amount of energy to digest animal-based proteins. Reducing protein in the diet will help to improve digestion so that food does not ferment in the gut.
- RR Brown, et al. Implications of interferon-induced tryptophan catabolism in cancer, autoimmune diseases, and AIDS. Adv Exp Med Biol. 1991; 294: 425 – 35.
- N Mizushima, et al. Autophagy Fights Disease Through Cellular Self-Digestion. Nature. February 28 2008; 451 (7182): 1069 – 1075.
- K Jia, et al. Autophagy is required for dietary restriction-mediated life span extension in C. elegans. Autophagy. 2007 Nov – Dec; 3 (6): 597 – 599.