All cards on the table, your low-carb diet is why you cannot lose any weight. I know this might be a fact that may be shocking you to your core and I know that you have a fear of eating “too many carbs” for this very reason…but your hormones cannot continue this way.

I remember fearing carbs because my whole life I grew up being told that “carbs cause weight gain”. So I tried every single different type of low-carb variation under the sun. And sure, maybe it worked for a week, but the restriction and deprivation that came with it caused more metabolic damage than I could have ever imagined.

In fact, it wasn’t until I started to eat carbs that I was able to lose 50 lbs. And because I was eating enough to nourish my systems, I was even able to put my Hashimoto’s symptoms into remission with the right intake levels.

Let me say this loud and clear – carbs are not the enemy. They are necessary for so many essential functions and hormone balance and depriving your body is likely the reason you are struggling with so many symptoms.

Why Your Body Needs Carbs

Carbohydrates are an essential source of energy and every single system in your body needs them to function properly (and I mean literally every system)…

⚡ Your thyroid needs carbs to convert T4 to T3 for useable energy.

🍋 Your liver needs carbs to help regulate estrogen and toxin filtration.

🧠 Your brain needs carbs to function every single day (it is the preferred energy source).

💪 Your muscles need carbs to build lean mass and ditch body fat.

🧘‍♀️ Your body needs carbs to regulate serotonin and dopamine production.

🍟 Your leptin is regulated when your body has optimal carb intake (aka you don’t binge eat).

💥 Your adrenals need carbs to regulate stress response.

They help to fuel hormone balance and system function. And when your systems and hormones are happy and thriving, they fuel results. In fact, they come almost effortlessly.

Signs You Are Not Eating Enough…

❓ Do you have crazy cravings during the day for sugar or salt?

❓ Maybe you find yourself binging on snacks at the end of the night even though you have been “perfect all day”?

❓ Or you are known to your family and friends as the person who gets “hangry”?

These symptoms often have been associated with the idea that you are just not “consistent” or “dedicated” enough to your diet/fitness regimen, but they are actually your body’s way of screaming for support.

Cravings happen because your body needs something for optimal function, think of it like your body is sounding an alarm 🚨. The cravings become even more intense when your body needs it that much more. Which is often why you struggle to tune them out or override them. It’s biological.

Beyond cravings, here are a few signs that you likely are not getting enough carbs:

😫 Having muscle fatigue and weakness

💉 Blood sugar dysregulation and insulin imbalance

↗️ Gain weight easily (especially in the stomach)

❌ Cannot lose weight in the stomach

🩸 Missing or irregular cycle

😣 Sluggish liver symptoms or liver damage

😴 Always tired

😖 Struggle with bloating

🤔 Difficulty concentrating or with memory

“But Every Time I Add Carbs Back I Gain Weight”…

Nearly every single client I have supported (and it’s been near 2000) has said this to me at some point in time. And you might be struggling with this very fear right now.

You might understand that you need carbs for function, but you have no idea how to actually reintroduce them in a way that delivers results.

I see you, and here is why this is happening.

Low-carb diets severely disrupt the adrenal cortisol and your stress response. It’s very likely that chronically under-eating in carbohydrates all these years has put a biological halt on your system.

When your body needs energy, it needs glucose. Plain and simple. For years, you have been under-eating in carbs, which means that ready-to-use glucose has been basically unavailable. But when there is a will, your body finds a way.

If you don’t have enough carbohydrates your body will break down protein to yield the required glucose needed for energy production ( and most people are not properly in ketosis, so this process is likely not working for you.

What hormone is called upon to convert protein into energy-generating glucose? You guessed it – cortisol.

By increasing the need for cortisol (to generate new glucose), a low carbohydrate diet can put more stress on adrenals that are already fatigued. Cortisol is a fat-storage hormone. It tells your body to create and preserve fat in times of chronic stress (aka your prolonged low-carb diet). Cortisol also disrupts insulin and leptin, which both promote increased fat storage.

So how do you turn this process off to balance hormones and get results?

Cycle-Synced Carb Cycling

Reintroducing carbohydrates to your diet strategically and in alignment with your hormone and metabolic function. Across your cycle phases, your body’s insulin function and metabolic function shift along with its stress threshold.

Adapting your carbohydrate intake across your phases and moving through a progressive cycle-synced reverse diet is critical to improving your body’s utilization of carbs and getting results like this…

Here is an overview of how that looks:

  • Follicular & Ovulatory Phase: Carbohydrate utilization increases and insulin function increases. This is a great time to gradually increase carb intake. Consider the type of carbohydrate here. Focus on foods that have a moderate glycemic index and that are high in fiber to promote a healthy gut biome for estrogen filtration (which will help avoid luteal phase bloating and anxiety).
  • Luteal & Menstrual Phase: Stress threshold is low (aka circulating cortisol levels are higher) and insulin function is diminished. Metabolic rate increases overall, but your ability to handle carbohydrates diminishes. This does not mean cut, it means shift and focus on low glycemic carbohydrates that are higher in fiber to control release into the bloodstream.

Identifying your intake needs, carb timing and types, as well as metabolic progressions is something we identify for you in Hormone Balance Coaching.

Ready to drop inches and ditch symptoms this summer?

Are you ready to feel confident this summer 🔥, shed inches 📏, have energy ⚡, and not let symptoms hold you back 👊 – all without sacrificing your favorite things? ❤️💚💛

If YES then kickstart your journey with a FREE discovery call 📞 to discuss your goals and get tailored strategies to focus on.

Or if you are ready to start your hormone balance journey, enroll in one of my Hormone Balance Coaching Programs for tailored support.

Tasha is an Integrative Clinical Nutritionist, B.S., CPT, Pilates Instructor, and Founder of Happy Hormone Health. She has coached 2000 women in reclaiming their energy, living symptom-free and transforming their health through hormone balance nutrition. Start your hormone balance journey with customized hormone balance coaching. 

Leave a Reply