Carbs are an essential source of nutrients for athletes and the general public. Can it be used as an effective tool for weight loss? It sure can, but it can also become an effective strategy to decrease your carbohydrate intake as well. The way to balance all of this is to know precisely when to time your carbohydrate intake. If you suffer from obesity or want to lose a good amount of body fat, then lowering your cabs will be a lot more effective than carb cycling. The benefits for you would be even more significant because you will be lowering blood sugar, blood pressure and triglycerides. Low carb diets are, in fact, a lot more sustainable and prove to be a lot more successful than calorically restricted diets. There has been a bit of research done on this topic if you would like to look at it in further detail (8, 9, 10). Your daily carb intake will depend on a few factors. This includes your age, gender, body composition, activity levels and your metabolic health as it currently stands. Realistically, those who are more physically active and have much more muscle mass (this is why I always put building muscle as a higher priority than cardio) can tolerate many more carbs than people who sit on their backside all day. This applies quite heavily to those who complete high-intensity training regularly, like lifting weights or sprinting (even long-distance running). If you are in that category above, you will be able to increase your carb intake. It will depend on your tolerance level, and some experimentation will be needed to work out what’s best for you.There isn’t any real tangible evidence to signify how much our carb intake should be; Below, I’ll give you a few rough guidelines on what I’ve been researching regarding this topic.The everyday guide to your carb intake for fat loss and maintenance. Moderate levels – 100–150g per dayThis is for lean, active people and trying to stay healthy and maintain their body fat percentage. You must still pay attention to your portion sizes. Below I will give you a guideline of what carbs are best to eat within this range:
- Any veggies
- Moderate intake of starches like potatoes, sweet potatoes, rice and oats
Low levels 50–100g per dayIf you want to lose weight or are more sensitive to weight gain when eating carbs, this level will be great for you.Carbs you can eat:
- 2–3 pieces of fruit per day (preferably berries)
- Minimal amounts of starches (choose things like oats)
Minimal levels 20–50g of carbsIf you are obese or suffer from metabolic problems and diabetes, this is the best range for you.Carbs you can eat:
- Low carb veggies (choose the green variety)
- Berries only
- Avocados nuts and seeds (in other words, higher fat than anything).
These levels are not set in stone, and when your health starts to increase, you may find that you can tolerate more carbs in your diet. Experiment and work out what suits you best. Whatever level you do choose to be on, focus on the following sources of nutrition to improve your health:
- lean meats
- healthy fats
Include lots of fibre in your diet to increase satiety and lower blood sugar.I hope you found this article helpful, and I would love you to upvote it if you did. Please also join me on my various social platforms and do go ahead and download your Empowering habit changer guide. I’m also on Instagram.