Ask John Douillard: Eat more Carbs in Winter?

Via Dr. John Douillard
on Nov 8, 2011
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Q. During the winter months I always crave more carbs – warm bread to go with a winter stew, risotto, and filling pastas etc.

Is it bad to eat too many carbs? 

What’s your take on this, Dr. Douillard? 

A. This is a great question! 

Most experts tell us that about two-thirds of the diet should be alkaline and one-third should be acid. While this may sound healthy, it is quite a challenge for even the most health conscious Americans to accomplish.

Basically this means that every meal you eat, when you look down at the plate: two-thirds of it should be fruits or veggies and the other one-third should be bread, grain, meat, cheese and other acidic foods.

Not only is this a challenge, but a flat out impossibility in nature. While experts decree the 2/3, 1/3 plan  should happen each day, in nature it takes one year, a full 365 days a year to complete nature’s annual cycle.

In nature, there are three main harvests, thus the title of my book, The 3-Season Diet. Here are the seasons according to the harvests:

  1. The first harvest of the year is Spring, which is almost 100% alkaline, loaded with spring greens, root veggies and berries.
  2. The second harvest of the year is summer which again is almost all alkaline. A summer garden will supply you with more alkaline fruits and veggies than you can possible eat.
  3. The third harvest is the late fall and winter harvest which is almost all acidic. In the winter, without a grocery store, one would be eating stored grains, nuts, meats, eggs, cheese and other more dense and very acidic foods.

Two-thirds of the year, in the spring and summer, the harvest is alkaline.
The last one-third, during the winter, the harvest is acid.
So nature accomplishes a two-thirds alkaline and one-third acid meal plan – it just takes one full year to accomplish.

What about breads?

It is quite natural to crave grains, breads and meats each winter. This is a natural desire to insulate, store fats and proteins to rebuild in the winter so to be ready for natures new year come spring. In fact, what is interesting according to Ayurveda is that each winter, the digestive fire or digestive strength becomes stronger so to be better able to digest the more insulating and dense foods of winter. So go for it….eat those foods while the fire is hot!

For more info, read my recent video-newsletter: Last Chance to Alkalize.


About Dr. John Douillard

Dr. John Douillard, DC, CAP is a globally recognized leader in the fields of natural health, Ayurveda and sports medicine. Over the past 30 years, he’s helped over 100,000 patients repair their digestive system and eat wheat and dairy again. He is the creator of, a leading Ayurvedic health and wellness resource on the web with over 6 million views on YouTube. LifeSpa is evolving the way Ayurveda is understood around the world with over 1000 articles and videos proving ancient wisdom backed by modern science. Dr. John is the former Director of Player Development and nutrition advisor for the New Jersey Nets NBA team, author of six books, a repeat guest on the Dr. Oz show, and has been featured in Woman’s World Magazine, Yoga Journal, the Huffington Post and dozens of other publications. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Receive his valuable health reports in your inbox - sign up for free! ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- For information on Dr. John's newest book, Eat Wheat, please visit, and connect with Dr. Douillard on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Eat Wheat is now available in bookstores. It can be ordered from Amazon, and all major booksellers.


7 Responses to “Ask John Douillard: Eat more Carbs in Winter?”

  1. Andréa Balt says:

    Thank you. I'd never really considered Ayurveda in depth, until I listened to one of your talks at IIN.

  2. Venus says:

    Thank you. This is really helpful because I sure am craving more breads. I have to be careful because I’m kapha.

  3. katherine says:

    And let's not forget the whole good carbs vs bad carbs argument, and grains vs whole grains. A loaf of whole-grain spelt bread, or a plate of whole-grain spelt pasta satisfies the craving for carbs while providing a wide range of nutrients. Or try other ancient grains, like farro and emmer – much healthier than modern industrialized wheat. All carbs are not created equal.

  4. Shine says:

    Awesome Website and Blog, Thank you for sharing this unvaluable information!

  5. […] not complicated. You can always do something, under any circumstances or excuses. And it’s never too late – until it […]

  6. […] In spring, nature begins to turn up the heat and provide lots of water to help stimulate germination of seeds. During this time of year we see an abundance of sprouts, bitter greens and roots. This low fat/low calorie fare helps to break up the heavy, oily, high fat, high calorie diet of winter. Then comes summer, a time when growing season it is it peak. There is ample energy from the sun, and an plethora of high carbohydrate foods are available to help sustain those energy levels. The summer heat breaks up the dampness of spring and dries out any left over mucus from the body. Finally, there’s winter. This is a time of year when our bodies can feel dried out or cold. We need lots of high fat, oily foods to keep moisture and energy for the winter season ahead. John Douillard, an Ayurvedic expert, explains this principal in detail in his book called “The 3-Season Diet, Eat the way nature intended.” […]

  7. […] last week those pesky carb cravings were back with a vengeance. I gave into them at first… “Just a little crusty bread with […]