The carbohydrate roller coaster: I want off!

I know that I need carbohydrates in my diet. Carbs are the primary source of fuel for our muscles and brains. Too few, we’re tired and perform poorly. Too many, we’re tired, perform poorly and gain weight.

Like most things in life, moderation in carbohydrate intake is best. And sticking to high quality, complex carbohydrates, even better still.

Sometimes, however, our brains tell us to eat the less-than-healthy variety, urging us on to what I call ‘the carbohydrate roller coaster’. Eat a cookie, feel good, blood sugars rise, insulin kicks in, blood sugars fall, feel bad, eat another cookie repeat, repeat, repeat.

Lately, I’ve been on a bit of a carbohydrate roller coaster, and I want off.

Watch the video below to see how I’m planning on dealing with my unhealthy cravings.

Part of my plan is to read the following three books and try and understand the reasons behind the cravings;

All three books are available through my Amazon store; I receive a commission when books I recommend are purchased this way.

Have you ever been on a carbohydrate roller coaster?

How did you get off?

Like this video? Subscribe to my YouTube channel.
Like this blog? Why not subscribe to it too? Just enter your email address in the ‘subscriptions’ box (top right hand corner).
And be sure to sign up for my New Monthly Newsletter (top left hand corner). Beginning June 1st, you’ll receive new content about fitness, nutrition and exercise right in your email inbox!

Looking for an inexpensive way to jump-start your journey to fitness and health? Join my online Bootcamp today! Get more info by clicking the image below.

Looking for an inexpensive way to jump-start your journey to fitness and health? Join my online Bootcamp today! Get more info by clicking the image below.


  1. I will have to listen to the video later – hubby is asleep BUT I get that love of carbs! I was a carb addict back when – still am BUT when I got the food right in my 30’s, I recognized that I loved them & I knew I had to do what I had to do. Granted when I was younger, I could treat myself a tiny bit more but the late 40’s & especially the 50’s are the years I really have to be careful. I think because I know this so well about myself & I have had years perfecting dealing with it, ;-), I am OK now.
    Jody – Fit at 54 recently posted…Gratitude Monday & The Tale of the Hair; Happy Memorial DayMy Profile

    • I have a few friends from the far east coast, and they’re all carb lovers too! Must be something in the water! I don’t shop at Costco; I have once and the super sized everything incited me to buy way more food than I needed (I had a case of tomato soup that still resided in my pantry 5 years later; I ended up tossing it!).
      Looking forward to your comments on the video!

    • You have it all figured out and I’m so jealous!
      I have had my carb/sugar cravings under control for a long time; not sure why they are back with a vengeance right now…
      Perhaps it’s time for another no-sugar challenge.

  2. I’m from Newfoundland so I’m naturally a lover of carbs. But recently I’ve tried costco’s ciabatta buns. Have you ever had them!? They’re hard on the outside and so so chewy on the inside.

    I can view your video as I’m at work right now but I will have to click back later. I emailed myself the link to this blog post. πŸ™‚

  3. Enjoyed the video Tamara, and honestly I am not a huge video fan!

    But very interested in the subject as I am affected too. I do think it is a chemical craving that happens in our bodies. I read Dr. Oz’s YOU on a diet a few years ago and he has a section on hormones in our body that regulate food cravings. Interesting.

    Will look at these books too, and watch for your updates.

    Thanks for taking on this subject!
    Elle recently posted…Saturday Morning Swiftsure StartMy Profile

    • Thanks for the Dr Oz book. He’s not my favourite, but may have something to add to the question as well. And also, appreciate your feedback on the video. I am working on my v-blogging skills!

  4. Let me know what you think of the Metabolic Effect book once you have read it. I am curious to know whether to read it myself, get the highlights from you, or move along.

    • Kymberly,
      I have read it already and loved a lot of things about it. In particular, the guidelines for listening to you body and figuring out what really works for you.
      Apparently, I need to read it again and be more mindful…

    • This book is by Jade Teta. His Met Effect program is a specific type that’s based on rest. Ryan Halvorson is one of the certified trainers/ gyms for this program if you wish to take a class. Kymberly, your former intern Michelle teaches at this gym – it’s in San Diego County. Jade has written some articles for IDEA on this topic.
      AlexandraFunFit recently posted…Lose 10 Pounds in 4 Weeks?My Profile

      • Jade Teta and the Metabolic Effect blog rock! I follow them on Facebook and often share their status updates. I’ve even done some rest-based interval training! Would be fun to take a class with Ryan Halvorson. Maybe next time we’re in SoCal!

  5. I read Wheatbelly in Dec. 2011 and decided to give it a try. Long story short, 30 lbs down without the cravings I have come to expect when changing my eating drastically. I am satisfied, although I am seen as extreme by family and friends. Oh, that social pressure! Big learning…. wheat free is not gluten free. Gluten free is for those living with celiac, and includes all sorts of unhealthy flours like refined rice, corn etc. When someone says to me, careful, nuts are so fattening, I wonder how I managed to loose the weight while eating a fair amount of nutty recipes. I am still experimenting but am full of energy and cooking the oddest yet tasty recipes.

    • And I’ve seen your amazing transformation Bev! I’m looking forward to reading it myself, as well as trying the recipes on their website.

  6. So proud of you for taking charge Tamara!
    Meg recently posted…Meatless Monday Makes a ComebackMy Profile

  7. good for you for making the decision to make some changes for your better! i carb cycle and i actually really like it – the low-carb days aren’t as bad when you know there’s a high carb day coming up and my body seems to be responding nicely!
    teabagginit recently posted…Winning with PB Crave Giveaway!!!My Profile

    • I’ve read lots about carb cycling, but never tried it myself. How many grams do you cycle back and forth between and for how many days at a time? I’m curious!

      • i cycle between 50, 100, and 150 grams and do a 3 day cycle. i also try to plan it so that my high-cardio days are after (i work out in the morning) the high-carb days and my strength days are after the low-carb days. it’s also good for helping your body learn to use fat as fuel – so important for long-distance athletes!
        teabagginit recently posted…Winning with PB Crave Giveaway!!!My Profile

        • Thanks for the info! 50 sounds quite low to me; how much protein are you eating? and does it help with the cravings?

  8. carbs are not the enemy. I think we need to listen to our cravings there. The best way to do that might be to portion them out beforehand, ya know? Portion control can be useful. Great vlog and way to be honest!
    lindsay recently posted…Island Hopping Training Weekend: Sherpa ScenesMy Profile

    • Absolutely! I love my oats, sweet potatoes and brown rice. It’s the other things that I’m loving lately that are dragging my energy levels down. White flour, white sugar and empty calories!

  9. Before I got into Health and Fitness, all I ever ate were carbs and sugars! I was seriously a carb monster!
    Kierston recently posted…It’s Almost Time!My Profile

  10. So listened! For me, I grew up with all the “bad crabs”! white bread & sweets of all kinds & donuts & bagels & just about anything you can name – all those Hostess treats.. so I got fat AND I came to love them. Once I lost my weight, I knew what I had to do to keep it off, even if at first I ate too little & was really just eating salads & stuff like that. I did not go back to crackers & cookies & all that. I was not like some that thought I could go back to eating once I lost weight – I knew what I was fat! πŸ˜‰

    When I was young, I really did not treat myself with my weekend cookies like I do now. It was holiday treating only. Learned later that having a couple big ole cookies on the weekend was no big deal.

    I even ate my beloved bagels every day for years & years along with bread. I did learn with age that I had to change out my bagels for all healthy breads – whole grains, good fiber & some protein & that has continued with age – age makes everything harder!

    BUT I did realize I just could not snack on all that other stuff & it stayed out of the house. I still eat bread but it is very healthy bread – some are sprouted, others may be 100% whole grains.. but I do eat them dry except for my after workout with my PB with chia/flax mixed in the PB.

    I have heard others say that eating these carbs or even bread or wheat creates triggers in them to over eat. For me, it is just that I LOVE THE TASTE of them so I have to PORTION CONTROL & understand I can only have so much.

    Very interested to hear what you think of the books. I think this may be an individual thing.. like artificial sweeteners which they say make people eat more – not me… πŸ™‚
    Jody – Fit at 54 recently posted…Gratitude Monday & The Tale of the Hair; Happy Memorial DayMy Profile

    • I hate the words ‘portion control’; I tend to be an all of nothing kind of girl!
      But yes, you and Lindsay are correct; everything in measured moderation!

  11. oooh cant wait to see vlog when I can get the child wrangle (WHY IS SHE UP??)
    simple carbs make me a crazywoman.
    MIz recently posted…Four tips for finding your resistance training mojo.My Profile

  12. I love carbs & am super careful now about incorporating enough to feel full, but not too many that are going to curb my hand work. It’s always a struggle. But I MUST have my oatmeal. As in, must! πŸ˜‰



  1. […] couple of weeks ago, I described my current relationship with carbohydrates as a ‘roller coaster’; an endless cycle of carb cravings, indulgence and blood sugar highs and […]