Carbohydrates function on a scale. The more simple the carbohydrate (or sugar) is, the faster it will burn in the body. More complex carbohydrates take a longer amount of time to be burned off in the body. Since humans utilized their carbohydrate stored as a primary source of energy, depleting the amount of carbohydrates causes the body to seek other sources of energy (in the form of calories). The body uses fats as a secondary source of energy, and proteins as a tertiary source.
For low carb recipes to work well, the simple carbs must be eliminated first. These carbohydrates are the ones that can turn into fats if they’re not used. The human body is extremely smart – it recognizes that it may need to store energy for the future, and fat is just that: long term energy storage.
Low carb recipes can still utilize some of the complex carbohydrates while remaining successful. These carbohydrates take much longer before being turned into fats in the body. Some popular complex carbohydrates include sweet potatoes, brown rice, and oatmeal. By utilizing one of these carbohydrates in each meal, low-carb diet users will be able to stay away from muscle loss (by not resorting to protein based energy) while still losing weight.
Lower carbohydrate intake will still occur with these more dense foods, and still allow for fat to be burned, without fat being stored. All three of the aforementioned carbohydrate sources are quick to prepare, yet sweet potatoes are probably the simplest and healthiest carbs of the three.
Sweet potatoes can be prepped in a variety of ways. The simplest and most effective is by baking them. Similar to baking a regular potato, start by preheating the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. While the oven is heating up, make sure to clean the sweet potatoes to ensure that no dirt is on the skin. This part is edible, so it’s key to ensure that all of the dirt is removed. Gently scrub the outside of the potatoes using a small amount of water. Dry them off, and set them aside. Next, cover a baking sheet or glass dish in aluminum foil. Don’t worry about spraying the foil with non-stick spray, as all of the sugars that would cause the potatoes to stick will be retained inside.
By now, the oven should be warm enough. Place a few sweet potatoes on the dish, and place it in the oven on the middle rack. Set a time for an hour, and let the potatoes bake. Depending on the size of the potatoes, the cooking time may vary. They should be soft and sweet when served. Be sure to not overcook them however, as they will become stringy, and the complex sugars will begin to burn slightly. No extra seasonings should be necessary!