What is the greatest obstacle in the path to weight loss? For some time, many believed it was calories, or fat. But modern research points to carbohydrates as the bigger culprits in this initiative. Carbs are more difficult to convert into energy and can inhibit your progress in various other ways. Recently we looked at the relationship between carbs and calories for weight loss, uncovering numerous reasons that it’s wiser to keep a hard limit on the former rather than the latter. As such, many of the most popular new diets put a hard emphasis on cutting carbs rather than calories or fat. Approaches like the Atkins Diet and Keto Diet specialize in this particular area. If you don’t want to cut carbs out of your diet, though, carbohydrate blockers can be quite helpful.
Let’s face it: losing out on carbs is tough. There are so many foods that contain these compounds, which can range from sugars to starches to fibers. Even a number of healthy foods contain carbs, many of them aiding healthy digestion. So if you want to maintain a relatively normal diet, while keeping carbs from dinging your figure, what can you do? Numerous supplements serve as carbohydrate blockers, working to stop carbs from absorbing and turning into fat deposits. Different ingredients attack this objective with varying levels of efficacy. Below, we will lay out the pertinent info you should have at hand.
How Do Carbohydrate Blockers Work
Also known as starch blockers, carbohydrate blockers work to prevent or reduce digestion of carbs. This enables you to keep consuming sugars and starches without receiving the full impact. However, it’s still advisable to limit your intake. These supplements work by blocking the enzymes that your body requires for carb absorption and digestion. These compounds go by the name alpha-amylase inhibitors. You can find them naturally in certain dietary sources, but discint supplements deliver their benefits more directly. When carbs move through the intestine without the body breaking them down, they don’t provide carbs nor raise your blood sugar.
Types of Carbohydrate Blockers
Numerous different solutions serve this purpose. Some are prescription drugs like acarbose and miglitol. These are mainly for people with a medical need, often due to a condition such as diabetes. There are also many starch blocker supplements that are accessible for anyone. These are more for people with a simple goal of losing weight. One of the most common ingredients among supplemental carbohydrate blockers is white kidney bean extract. This is the most popular capsule component specifically focusing on this area. But does it really do what it intends to do?
Do Carbohydrate Blockers Really Work?
Here’s what the evidence says. Carbohydrate blockers do indeed block the enzymes they intend to block. However, they don’t appear to be terribly effective at blocking carb digestion. More often, they simply slow the process. One hallmark study found that a popular starch blocker only prevented about 7 percent of carbs from being digested. That may help a little, but obviously isn’t up to the level most users are seeking. Ultimately, it seems safe to say that taking dietary measures to cut back on carbs is easily the more effective approach.