Losing arm flab and keeping it off is extremely difficult if you don’t eat enough carbohydrates. Unfortunately, too many women are seduced by the rapid weight loss that ultra-low carbohydrate intakes produce.
Maybe you have been seduced.
But there is a catch. You see, the majority of weight loss from carbohydrate restriction is NOT arm fat, it’s water!
So here is what happens when you take carbohydrates out of your arm toning equation:
1. Mental output plummets: Your brain is made to function at peak capacity with a steady supply of broken down carbohydrates in the form of glucose. If you stop eating carbs cold turkey, your brain will turn to your muscle and fat for energy.
The bad news is that converting precious calorie-burning muscle and fat into brain energy is not very efficient-not nearly as good as a fresh and steady supply of glucose.
Now if you have a mentally demanding job (like most of the world), this can create some major issues.
2. You don’t get all the nutrition you need: There are certain vitamins, minerals, anti-oxidants and phytonutrients that are only found in carbs. If you simply knock out your carb consumption, you will miss out on all this life-enhancing nutrition.
And maximizing nutrition, energy and well being is critical when trying to tone your arms in order to counterbalance your caloric deficit.
3. You can’t burn the highest amount of calories: To keep your metabolism (i.e., daily caloric burn) as high as possible, you need to exercise as hard as possible. Unfortunately, without carbs, this isn’t feasible. You see, your muscles can only work at maximum capacity when their internal carb stores are high.
This is one of the reasons why women on a low carb diet find it harder and harder to maintain their arm toning results as time goes by.
4. You miss out on the post workout opportunity: During this period, your active tissues (including muscle) are able to absorb an “above normal” amount of carbohydrates. And if you aren’t eating carbohydrates during this narrow window of time, you can’t take advantage of this effect.
And recall that increasing muscle stores of carbohydrates allows you to exercise harder.
5. Your arms won’t look toned: Carbohydrates are in direct control of how your muscles look. Without them, your muscles will look very loose, jiggly and lacking in tone. This happens because carbs pull water into your muscles which makes them look toned and tight.
It’s like the difference between a partially filled wrinkly water balloon versus a full water balloon that doesn’t have a single wrinkle.
6. Your mood plummets: Study after study has shown that as carb intake goes down, so does levels of serotonin. And without enough mood-stabilizing serotonin in your brain, life will lose its color.
On the flipside, too many simple carbohydrates (i.e., sugars) can create addictions because the above effect is amplified to an extreme. So as with most things in life, moderation is key here!
It is possible to tone your arms while eating a healthy amount of carbohydrates. The key is to watch your total caloric intake and to stabilize your blood sugar with balanced meals and LOTS of vegetables. Follow this advice and you will be better positioned for long term success!