Be careful not to consume too many carbohydrates


  • Glutathione, a powerful natural antioxidant, is found depleted in electrons after ingesting a significant amount of carbohydrate.
  • People with a higher BMI were more prone to this process.

Eating a meal rich in carbohydrates before exercising has a long tradition. It turns out that this may not be a good thing for the body. A study, published on October 28 in theAmerican Journal of Physiology-Endocrinology and Metabolism, indicates that competition or not, eating too many carbohydrates during the same meal can disrupt the metabolism and hinder the action of antioxidants.

The consequences for non-diabetics

Metabolism is a process that allows those in the body to receive energy. Several factors can hinder this mechanism, such as obesity or sugar consumption. In addition, in people with diabetes, the consumption of carbohydrates is a factor of metabolic distress. No study has looked at the consequences of too much carbohydrate for people who do not have diabetes.

In this study, scientists conducted experiments on a group of 24 women who did not have diabetes. Of these, half had a healthy body mass index (BMI) while the other was overweight or obese. Each of them ate a meal containing a significant level of carbohydrate, over 350 grams. The researchers then conducted analyzes of the participants’ blood and fat samples.

Learn when to put the fork down

The results revealed a drop in the body’s antioxidant actions. After the high carbohydrate meal, glutathione – a powerful natural antioxidant – was deprived of its electrons. People with a higher BMI were more prone to this process, leading researchers to believe that cells take electrons from the antioxidant in order to fuel the process of converting fat from carbohydrates.

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Fat samples from overweight participants also showed decreased metabolic function compared to those with type 2 diabetes and insulin resistance. Since insulin increases the absorption of carbohydrates by cells, it amplified the effects of metabolic dysfunction, as cells are ill-equipped to cope with such a high volume of carbohydrates.

These results reinforced the theory that too much carbohydrate could lead to a decline in metabolism. Too many carbohydrates force cells to store them as lipids or fats. This process involves the conversion of carbohydrates into fat, which requires electrons. But, according to the study, when excess fat is produced, electrons are borrowed from other important metabolic processes, such as the production of antioxidants.

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