I help people along their weight loss journey every day, and this is something I hear every day: “I’ll never lose weight because I love carbs.” Oh! The infamous carb! Never mind the fact that weight loss is about total calories (not total carbohydrates). Do you know what “carbs” are? Do you know what they do for your body? Carbohydrates are found in most of the foods we eat in varying amounts: fruits, vegetables, grain products, dairy products, and foods containing added sugar. Your body uses carbohydrates to make glucose, which is what your body (and your brain!) uses for energy to keep everything going! Your muscles can’t even contract without this fuel source.
Invariably, once my clients start eating a balanced diet that includes a healthy amount of carbohydrates, protein, and fat (yes fat! But that’s a topic for a different day), they find they start dropping those “stubborn” pounds, without feeling deprived…and that’s weight loss that lasts!
Now some carbohydrates are “better” than others. I hope this doesn’t come as a surprise to any of you, but your body doesn’t need added sugar. That’s sucrose, fructose, maltose, honey, corn syrup, molasses, agave…the list goes on. These sweeteners may taste good, but don’t provide much nutrition. That’s not to say they’re inherently “bad,” but overloading on these can run up your calorie tab for the day, without really satisfying your body’s need for nutrition. Healthy carbohydrates (also called complex carbohydrates) include whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and low-fat dairy products. These foods provide you with bountiful nutrition for the calories, and can actually help you manage your weight! That’s because those foods also provide things like fiber and protein to help keep you feeling fuller longer.
Now, let’s put that information to use, and cook up some healthy carbs! My inspiration here came from some blue potatoes left over from our CSA, and the fact that it’s officially grilling season. Never grilled potatoes before? It’s a must! You can use regular potatoes for this as well if you don’t have blue. Just make sure to leave the skin on for the biggest nutritional bang for your buck possible. I paired it with some grilled chicken breasts and a few spears of asparagus I grilled (also from our CSA). I know it’s hard to tell in the picture, but they really are blue! See?
Grilled Blue Potatoes
12-14 Blue Potatoes, sliced
¼ cup olive oil
1. Preheat grill, and turn heat to medium.
2. Brush both sides of potato slices with olive oil and grill approximately 10-15 minutes on each side, until cooked through and slightly crispy.
Happy, healthy eating!