Q&A 2: What’s Your Carb Tolerance?

Q&A 2: What’s Your Carb Tolerance?

We talk a lot about how for maximum fat loss results you’ll want to limit your carbohydrates to your evening meal or post workout. That generates a lot of great questions from people who wonder how they lost weight while eating oatmeal for breakfast or how very lean people can get away with chowing down on bread and pasta all the time. These are fantastic questions that all point back to one thing: carb tolerance. In today’s episode we talk about the many different factors that influence carb tolerance, how to know your own and how to improve it!

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The Problem: Carbohydrate tolerance varies from person to person and what works for one person, especially a lean person, might not work for someone who has more fat to lose. People also mistake weight loss and fat loss. Just because you lost weight on a previous diet program doesn’t mean you lose fat!

The Solution: Understand what impacts carb tolerance. We discuss in detail the ways the following factors influence your carb tolerance:

  • Your insulin sensitivity or resistance
  • Your body composition
  • The type of carbohydrate consumed
  • The amount of carbohydrate consumed
  • Your physical activity level
  • The frequency of your carbohydrate consumption

Everyone has a different degree of carb tolerance. Fortunately there are things you can do to improve your carb tolerance and get to the point where you can maximize the amount of time you spend in fat burning mode and minimize the amount of time you spend in fat storing mode.

For detailed information on carbohydrate strategies for fat loss including more on fruit, wheat, oats, gluten plus strategies for improving your carbohydrate tolerance, check out the comprehensive carbs & fat loss ecourse! Follow the link below and use the coupon code Primal10 to get lifetime access for only $69 (including troubleshooting help from me on demand!)

Episode 002 – Hormones Trump Calories
Episode 007 – Carbs & Fat Loss: Timing Matters
Episode 009 – Carbohydrate Spillover – Is the Way You Eat Carbs Making You Fat
Hormones & Fat Loss ebook! 50 pages of diet & lifestyle strategies to help you naturally optimize your hormones and get into fat-burning mode!!

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Q&A 2: What’s Your Carb Tolerance?

199: 3 Stages of Carbohydrate Intolerance

In today’s episode I’m sharing the CliffNotes & takeaway of a white paper written by Dr. Philip Maffetone about the three stages of carbohydrate intolerance. To download the free whitepaper for yourself, click here.

Carbohydrate intolerance not only encourages weight gain, it impairs fat loss, damages the metabolism and triggers the development of illness and disease.

Most importantly, after we assess the three stages of carbohydrate intolerance, we’ll talk about what you can do about it.

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3 Stages of Carbohydrate Intolerance

Carbohydrate intolerance not only impairs fat loss and reduces energy – it also predisposes you to illness and chronic disease.

Dr. Philip Maffetone outlines how carbohydrate intolerance develops in the below model and then goes on to describe three stages of carbohydrate intolerance.

3 stages of carbohydrate intolerance

Dr. Philip Maffetone’s Model of Carbohydrate Intolerance

The three stages of carbohydrate intolerance can initiate in utero, in infancy, childhood, adolescence or adulthood and get worse until we choose to make dietary and lifestyle changes to improve carbohydrate tolerance.

Stages 1, 2 and 3 are detailed in the podcast so listen to the full episode to get all the details & the recommendations for making positive changes!

Don’t Forget to Save The Date!

The first ever Primal Potential Women’s Transformation Weekend is November 3-5th in downtown Nashville, TN! Tickets go on sale 7/12/16.


Dr. Philip Maffetone

Carbohydrate Intolerance Whitepaper

Stress & Fat Loss

Episode 009: Carbohydrate Spillover

Carb Timing

Carb Strategies for Effortless Fat Loss

Golden Rules of Carbs & Fat Loss

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Q&A 2: What’s Your Carb Tolerance?

170: 3 Ways to Improve Your Carbohydrate Tolerance

Months ago I shared a quiz to help people identify whether or not they are “carbohydrate sensitive”. The vast majority of people are. Fortunately, you can absolutely, positively improve your carbohydrate tolerance.

You are probably carb sensitive if you’re one of those people who feels like you gain weight at the mere sight of carbs. Or if you struggle with cravings & weight loss seems SO hard.

Many people feel like being carb intolerant or highly carb sensitive is just their lot in life but it doesn’t have to be.

In today’s episode I will introduce you to 3 specific strategies you can begin to implement today to improve your carbohydrate tolerance.

When you improve your carbohydrate tolerance, fat loss becomes easier, energy increases, cravings decrease, health improves and so much more!

Before we get started, don’t forget the free 31-day food journaling challenge! I explain the challenge in this episode and you can download your free journal by clicking the pink button below.

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3 Ways To Improve Your Carbohydrate Tolerance

In today’s episode I’m taking a deep dive into food, exercise & lifestyle strategies that will improve your carbohydrate tolerance, improve your insulin sensitivity and make weight loss much easier.

The three strategies include:

  • Adjusting the quantity, quality and timing of your carbohydrate consumption
  • Exercising more
  • Reducing stress

When it comes to achieving these goals of accelerating fat loss & increasing energy while decreasing cravings, we have to understand the role of muscle tissue in carb metabolism and insulin sensitivity.

There are 2 primary issues at play.

  1. We have to make sure there is room within our muscle glycogen stores. If they are always full, that will reduce carb tolerance and increase carb spillover into the fat tissue.
  2. We can increase the number and sensitivity of glucose transporters in the muscle tissue.

We need our muscle tissue to be more responsive to insulin. We can make this happen.

This responsiveness is related, in part, to glucose transporters. They live in our muscle tissue and are the doorways through which glucose enters the muscle tissue. 

When we have more glucose transporters, our muscle tissue is more responsive and efficient to glucose.

In some people, there just aren’t that many doorways. They also might not be very responsive. The factors we need to consider are: how many are there & how responsive are they?

When the glucose transporters (doorways) aren’t responsive or there aren’t that many of them, it’s like a pile-up outside the door.

That results in blood sugar & insulin staying elevated for longer which impairs fat loss.

Imagine you have a people trying to get into a building. What are the factors in making sure that the people get in quickly?


  1. How many people are there?
  2. How many doorways are there?
  3. How easy are those doors to get through?

Your glucose transporters are the same way.

Do you want a huge traffic jam of sugar, hanging out in the blood, keeping insulin elevated while waiting to get into the muscle tissue? No! You want to clear it fast.

Your ability to do so depends on:

  1. How much sugar there is (how much you ate and what type of carb)
  2. How many glucose transporters there are in your muscle tissue
  3. How sensitive they are

Today’s episode explains how you can control #1 while improving #s 2 and 3!


E-Course Carb Strategies for Fat Loss

How To Track Without Counting Calories

Episode 058: Understanding Fat Loss & The Insulin Effect

The Golden Rules of Carbs & Fat Loss

Carb Timing & Fat Loss

Carb Spillover & Fat Loss

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588: Carb Sensitivity & Sugar Addiction

What is carb sensitivity? How do you know if you’re carb sensitive? In today’s episode, we’re answering listener questions about carbs, sugar addiction, the best foods when you’re on a budget and much more!

Questions tackled in today’s episode include:

  • How can you tell the difference between being sluggish from something you ate and not getting quality sleep. I’m struggling with knowing if I’m getting enough/quality sleep.
  • I’ve listened to your episode on Identity Journaling but after I answer the questions,I’m not sure where to go with it. What do I do with my answers to the questions?
  • If I take your advice and ask myself, “What is possible?”, what do I do with the answer?
  • What I struggle with most, I identify as “sugar addiction”. I know that I would be healthier if I never ate refined sugar, but it’s a mind game where I feel deprived instead of feeling elated that I’m choosing to do good things for myself. I just don’t know how to get out of my own head.

  • I have no willpower. I listen to your podcasts and although they are so good, nothing is helping me. I lose 2-3lbs and then go on a blitz of eating poorly. At 58years old, I don’t think anything will help me.

  • How can you tell if you are sensitive to carbs or not?

  • What are the best nutritious foods available for a person currently living pay check to paycheck?

Resources for Carb Sensitivity

Wired to Eat by Robb Wolf

Primal Potential Episode 316 on Wired to Eat

Carb Sensitivity Program by Dr. Natasha Turner

Primal Potential Q&A 2: What’s Your Carb Tolerance

Get on the Wait List for the Summer 2019 12 Weeks to Transformation

Resources for Eating on a Budget

21 Day Sugar Detox Salmon Cake Recipe

Episode 066: Eating Healthy on a Budget

Episode 116: 5 Meals Under $1.99

Join the Primal Potential Facebook group!

In October 2019, our relationship with Thrive Market changed. They decided to put their marketing dollars in avenues outside of podcasting but we still think they’re a good choice if you’re looking to save money on health & personal care products.

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474: Carb Spillover – Eating Carbs Without Getting Fat

474: Carb Spillover – Eating Carbs Without Getting Fat

Want to know how to eat carbs without getting fat? Today’s episode is all about what happens when you eat carbs and strategies for eating them in a way that reduces the chances they’ll be converted to & stored as fat. Plus, we’ll talk about the common mistakes that create an internal environment where even small amounts of carbs you consume are converted to & stored as fat.

Carbs aren’t bad. That’s just not true. The flip side of that is that they are not an essential fuel source, despite what you might have heard. They are, however, quite yummy and can be enjoyed in a way that doesn’t lead to weight gain. We’re clearing all this up in today’s episode so don’t miss it!


Q&A 2: What’s Your Carb Tolerance

170: 3 Ways To Improve Your Carb Tolerance

199: 3 Stages of Carb Intolerance

009: Carb Spillover

378: Is High Protein Metabolically High Carb?

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