THE COLONEL - Food advice please

KELLY, 31, askes: ‘I’ve just started the gym and want to check about the foods to avoid. I heard someone say that sugars are bad for you but thought they gave you energy when training? Can you help me out please?’

Sorry Kelly, but it’s true. Sugar can give you a temporary energy boost but it’s usually followed by a ‘quick crash’. Energy from sucrose (sugar) doesn’t last as long as fruits and meats etc and too much sugar leads to it being stored as fat.

So yes, it’s best to recognise that sugars are not your friend – but the tricky thing is they’re everywhere! All carbohydrates are broken down into sugars, and even savoury carbohydrates such as bread, pasta and rice are broken down into sugars when they’re metabolized.

Appearances can be deceptive and it’s easy to fall foul even when you think you’re being good. Despite many carbohydrate packaged foods being advertised as‘Fat Free’, beware, a lot of the time they’re loaded with sugar. If all this sugar can’t be broken down into your body into glucose (and let’s be fair your body can only do so much!) then it will get stored as fat.

However, not all carbs are ‘the enemy’. Unrefined carbs are very healthy. Food items that have not been tampered with in the manufacturing process, such as fruit, vegetables and wholegrain bread are high in fibre and a good source of vitamins.

However, refined carbohydrates such as white bread and white rice usually have been tampered with during the manufacturing process so they do contain added sugars. These are the bad carbs to stay away from.

It’s not easy but once you’re on the right path eating well becomes second nature. Hope that helps!