When it comes to unorthodox diets, along with intermittent fasting, carb backloading has grown to be one of the most sought-after diet plans over the last few years.
Most marathon runners and athletes are familiar with what carb backloading is. But what if you’re just a regular person looking to take advantage of spoiling yourself with those tasty, full-of-carbohydrate meals?
Well, today we’re going to take a closer look at this innovative method for dieting. We’ll focus mainly on some relevant meals and snacks you can munch on without feeling guilty about it.
Firstly though, you’re most likely wondering what this dieting method really is. Well, let’s take a look at what carb loading actually is.
What on earth is carb backloading?
This method exploits the alteration of insulin levels that takes place in your fat and muscle cells on a regular basis. This, combined with increased insulin sensitivity, is ignited by working out your muscles.
Here’s how it works:
- You start by eating something small that won’t fill your stomach too much. You may even skip your breakfast entirely.
- Then, in early afternoon, you consume something light again
- During night-time is when you indulge in your favorite, high-carb foods
During the days that you work out, you should eat almost no carbohydrates until you’ve finished exercising. The preferable approach is to hit the gym later in the afternoon. After that, you pretty much start consuming as many carbohydrate-heavy foods as you want. That stage starts with your post-workout meal and lasts the whole night.
Basically, the main concept of carb backloading is to promote muscle gain, while also reducing your body fat. This is done by deliberately holding your insulin levels low during the day. Adequate protein intake is more than enough to help you maintain a low-carb approach (before your evening indulgences).
Now that you know what this innovative diet plan is, let’s concentrate on some relevant meals and snacks that can help you pile up those carbs!
The definitive carb backloading meal plan
You require the proper tools if you are to successfully do a carb backloading. This is why we’re going to give you a list of some amazing and mouth-watering meal options that will overload you with carbohydrates.
Apart from some awesome, carb-heavy meals, we’ve also prepared some outstanding snack recommendations that will totally fuel you with carbohydrates. But first, here are three unique meals that will carb-load you the right way:
- Colorful veggie carb-bomb
This is an incredibly yummy high-carb meal that is also nutritionally dense. You have a variety of carb sources here plus some other extra goodies.
- 1 tablespoon canola (or grapeseed oil)
- 1 garlic clove (minced)
- 1/2 small onion (chopped)
- 1 cup of sliced and fresh mushrooms, bell pepper, edamame and broccoli
- 1 cup of brown rice (raw)
- 1/4 cup of teriyaki sauce (sweet & sour sauce works as well)
How to prepare it:
- Prepare the brown rice as per the instructions on the packaging. Let the rice simmer and preheat a big pan over medium to high heat, then add the oil. When your oil is adequately heated, put the onion and garlic in and cook up to the point when the onion becomes translucent.
- Add the bell pepper, mushrooms, broccoli and edamame and start cooking them. Every veggie has to be tender-crisp.
- Take the frying pan off the hot-plate and add the teriyaki sauce (or any sauce that you prefer).
- You should now have around three servings.
- Enjoy it while it’s still hot.
- Quinoa and chicken
Dubbed the “supergrain of the future,” quinoa is undoubtedly a superfood. It’s loaded with vitamins, minerals and protein, among other vital nutrients for your health. The addition of chicken means even more protein so you’ll have enough buildings blocks for your muscles.
- 2 cups of chicken bouillon
- 1 cup of raw quinoa
- 2 small, chopped chicken breasts (around 10 oz. total)
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil
- 1/2 small onion (in pieces)
- 1 crushed garlic (clove)
- 2 cups of sugar snap peas
- 2 cups of pineapple pieces
- 1 cup of sliced beets
- 3 medium baked potatoes
How to prepare it:
- Grab a pan, add the chicken bouillon and the quinoa and wait for them to boil.
- Decrease the temperature to medium-low, then cover the pan and simmer up to the point where the quinoa is soft and the bullion is fully absorbed into the water. It generally takes no more than fifteen to twenty minutes.
- Let the quinoa simmer. Then heat (mid to high) the veggie oil in a big pan. Add the onion and garlic to the hot oil and wait for the onion to become translucent (takes around five to seven minutes).
- Place the chicken breasts into the mix and start cooking until they’re almost pink in color – should take you around five mins.
- Bring the snap peas, pineapple and beets and place them in your pan, then cook for five more mins. or when you believe the chicken is well-cooked.
- Serve it with a baked potato.
- Pork tenderloin with veggies and sweet potato
A brilliant combo of quality protein and large amounts of awesome carbs, this one will satisfy even the pickiest eaters. This is carb loading at its best.
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil
- 1/4 cup of sugar (brown)
- 1 tablespoon of crushed herbs
- 12 oz. of raw pork tenderloin
- 2 large sweet potatoes
- 3 cups of raw broccoli
- 1 cup of frozen corn kernels
- 2 whole wheat dinner rolls
How to prepare it:
- Take your grill and preheat it to a medium temperature.
- Mix the olive oil, herbs and brown sugar in a small container. Brush it all onto the pork.
- Put the tenderloin on the heated grill and proceed with cooking while turning them halfway. They should be done in fifteen to twenty minutes, just make sure the meat isn’t pink (unless you prefer it that way).
- Leave the pork aside and microwave the broccoli and corn together. When the broccoli softens up they’re ready and you can take them out of the microwave.
- Then add the potatoes and proceed with cooking until they’re soft (takes around five to ten mins).
- Add two tablespoons of cinnamon and brown sugar to each potato.
- Finally, slice the pork and serve alongside the potatoes, broccoli with corn and the dinner rolls.
5 snacks that are ideal for loading up on carbs
We’ve already covered three fantastic and tasty meals that will make your carb backloading life easier, so now it’s time to check some intriguing snacks that are loaded with carbs.
- Toasted bread with honey
A slice of delicious toasted bread with some honey on it is totally fast carbs galore. This is a superb way to spike your insulin levels after a heavy workout.
- Energy or protein bars
Arguably one of the most convenient methods for getting a hefty amount of protein and hopefully carbs (depending on the bar). Some of them contain even rice and oats, so make sure to grab one that offers high-quality calories.
- Bagels and strawberry jam
This one is similar to toasted bread with honey due to the fact that it screams carbs – lots of them. You’ll be refueling your depleted glycogen like crazy by feasting on some bagels combined with yummy strawberry jam.
- All kinds of fruits
Even dried ones work just as well – dried apricots are a great way to stack up on those carbohydrates. They have a good amount of fiber, potassium and even some vitamins. Also, prunes are another great option since they’re loaded with carbs.
- Pancakes with a banana (or blueberries) topped with a maple syrup
When it comes to foods that are literally stuffed with carbohydrates, pancakes are among the top ones. Especially when you add extra oomph by mixing in a banana or some blueberries while topping it all with some delicious maple syrup.
Give yourself a pat on the back, because you’re now familiar with some amazing foods that are jam-packed with carbs and will fuel you like no other.
Not only are the meals that we showed you super tasty, but they’re also healthy and perfectly relevant to the carb loading ideology. Besides, you can always munch on the amazing snacks mentioned in the previous section – no one can deny the might of pancakes with bananas!
As you can see, carb backloading isn’t rocket science and with the proper tools in your arsenal, you’ll be on your way to more muscles and less fat. Now, feel free to drop us a comment in the comment section below and share what your favorite carb-loading meal (or snack) is.
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