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This is What Happens When You Eat Carbs and Fats Together

Oh yes. That tasty and creamy feeling of the pasta is unbelievable! All this cheese…so good!

You know that feeling. I know that feeling. It’s amazing

But is it a good idea to eat a bunch of carbohydrates and fats in terms of calories and weight loss?

Oh, I know what your thinking. “It’s calories in vs calories out at the end of the day.

It doesn’t matter if I eat a bunch of carbohydrates and fats at once or a bunch of anything else at once.”

“Calories in vs. calories out” or science. Which one are you going to believe?

I believe science and you should too.

When you consume carbohydrates, it gets broken down into glucose in the small intestine.

Afterward, the glucose gets sent out of the small intestine via blood vessels. Now lets briefly look at how fats enter the bloodstream.

After you consume fats, it makes its way down to the small intestine.

However, fats don’t leave the small intestine via blood vessels because the size of chylomicrons (lipoproteins that carry mostly triglycerides and cholesterol) are too big to fit in the blood vessels.

Because of this, the fats packaged in the chylomicrons enter lymphatic vessels called a lacteal. These lacteals mostly empty in the vein near the left and right thoracic duct. Afterward, the fats packaged in the chylomicrons get pumped out and into the bloodstream via the heart.

Alright sweet. Now we know the basic idea of how fat and glucose make their way into the bloodstream. So the question still remains: why shouldn’t you eat carbohydrates and fats in one meal?


Yeah. I know. I’m completely being serious right now. Insulin is the reason why you shouldn’t be combining a ton of fats and carbohydrates in one meal.

As I briefly explained above, when you consume carbohydrates, insulin gets released via the beta cells in your pancreas.

The insulin then binds to your cells’ receptors which causes the cells to “open”. Why?

The cells need glucose for energy! The insulin binding process is how blood glucose decreases! However, keep in mind that all the creamy fats you ate in that pasta are also swimming in your bloodstream near the glucose! So what do you think will happen when the insulin binds to your cells? Obviously, the glucose and other nutrients will “enter” the cell, but what else will enter?



For those of you who want to know more as to how the fat and sugar/carbohydrates enter your fat cells, below will be a little more science for you to read.

We must pick up from where I mentioned the chylomicrons in the blood stream. Remember, the chylomicrons were lipoproteins that were made up of protein/phospholipid covering and were responsible for carrying the cholesterol and fats/triglycerides throughout the bloodstream.

Another important factor to mention is that when the chylomicrons left the intestinal cells, there was a certain protein put on the chylomicrons. This protein was an apo-B48 protein. When the chylomicron gets into the blood stream, HDL (high density lipoprotein) donates two more important proteins which are an apo-c2 and an apo-E protein.

The apo-c2 protein is what binds to lipoprotein lipases throughout the blood vessels. Lipoprotein lipase enzymes help break down the triglycerides into glycerol and free fatty acids. These free fatty acids enter the fat cells/adipocytes and the glucose nearby in the blood stream also enters the fat cells due to the presence of insulin and GLUT-4 receptors.

The glucose that enters the adipocytes can enter glycolysis (which is the beginning stage of cellular respiration in which glucose gets broken down into two pyruvates) and get converted to dihydroxyacetone phosphate. The dihydroxyacetone phosphate can then get converted into glycerol. Glycerol can then get converted into glycerol-3-phosphate.

So now you have fatty acids from the fat you consumed and the glycerol-3-phosphate because of the carbohydrates you consumed. The glycerol-3-phosphate and the fatty acids in the adipocytes can now combine and form triglycerides or fat (with the help of acyl-transferase enzymes)

There is so much more science into this, but it is still fascinating to me that all of this science is occurring inside us!

This is why I believe that it does matter what you eat! I mean doesn’t it make sense? At the end of the day, for example, I would gain more fat inside my cells if I ate 1000 calories worth of mostly carbohydrates and fats compared to 1000 calories worth of mostly proteins and fats.


Even though you ate the same amount of calories, it still mattered what you ate.

As you can see, it’s not always about “calories in vs. calories out.”


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Should You Eat Carbs and Fat Together?


Many people believe that in order to maximize fat loss, you should avoid eating fat and carbohydrate in the same meal.

Protein and fat is fine. So is protein and carbohydrate.

But if you eat fat while insulin levels are elevated from the carbohydrate, your fat cells are going to fill up faster than Samson losing his strength after a visit to the barbers.

Is it true?

The first time I came across the idea was in a French book called The Montignac Method, which was published back in the late 1980’s.

Having been regurgitated by various authors over the years, the theory is one that clearly makes for interesting reading. The only problem with it is the not insignificant amount of research pointing to the fact that the whole thing is actually complete nonsense.

For one, the fact that a meal contains little or no carbohydrate is no guarantee that it won’t affect insulin levels.

Eat protein and fat together, and there is still the potential for insulin levels to rise. In fact, some protein-rich foods raise insulin levels to a greater extent than their high-carbohydrate counterparts. That’s despite little or no change in blood sugar levels.

The figure below comes from scientists at the University of Sydney. It shows the insulin response to a fixed amount (239 calories) of a particular food over a two-hour period [2]. White bread was the reference food with an insulin score of 100%.


As you can see, even foods containing very little carbohydrate (beef, eggs, fish and cheese) still trigger a substantial rise in insulin levels.

All of which is largely irrelevant, because fat doesn’t need insulin in order to be stored anyway.

There’s a particularly potent hormone that goes by the name of Acylation Stimulating Protein (ASP), which does a pretty good job of storing fat without the need for insulin [3].

ASP is activated by substances called chylomicrons, which carry fat in your blood after a meal. Which means that any time you eat fat, even in the absence of protein or carbohydrate, there is the potential for it to be stored.

What’s more, the fact that fat is being “stored” isn’t necessarily a bad thing. When it comes to losing fat, what counts is the difference between the amount of fat that gets stored and the amount of fat that’s burned off.

If your overall diet for the day leaves you in an energy deficit, which means there’s a mismatch between the amount of fuel your body needs and the amount it gets from food, stored fat will make up much of the difference.

Over time, if the amount of fat that gets burned off is greater than the amount that gets stored, you’ll lose weight.

The only study I could find to test whether separating carbohydrate and fat makes any difference as far as weight loss is concerned comes from a Swiss research team based at Geneva’s University Hospital [1].

The trial looked at the effect of two diets on weight loss in a group of hospitalized men and women. Diet one (the dissociated diet) involved separating carbohydrate and fat. Diet two (the balanced diet) did not.

Both diets provided the same number of calories as well as identical amounts of protein, carbohydrate and fat.

If eating carbohydrate and fat together increased fat storage, you’d expect to see a slower rate of weight loss in the balanced group. But that wasn’t the case.

After six weeks, subjects in the balanced group lost an average of 16.5 pounds. Those in the dissociated group (the ones separating carbohydrate and fat) lost an average of 13.6 pounds.

In other words, it was subjects in the balanced group who lost the most weight, although the difference wasn’t large enough to reach statistical significance.

I’ve seen it argued that the real benefit of separating carbohydrate and fat is that it forces you to stop and think about what you’re eating. It’s a method for enhancing compliance more than anything else.

While it may enhance compliance for some, it’s also going to reduce compliance for others, mainly because it adds to the confusion about what you can and can’t eat.

The only true requirement for weight loss is a calorie deficit. If separating carbohydrate and fat makes it easier for you to achieve that, then by all means carry on doing it.

For me, it’s an entirely pointless rule that you’ll do just as well to ignore.


The links above are affiliate links, so I receive a small commission every time you use them to purchase a product. The content contained in this video, and its accompanying description, is not intended to replace viewers’ relationships with their own medical practitioner. Always speak with your doctor regarding the content of this channel, and especially before using any products, services, or devices discussed on this channel or website.

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