If you remember the food pyramid from back when you were in school, you might also remember that the base of the pyramid was made up of carbohydrates. This is because carbs are our body’s main source of fuel and are essential for survival. Without carbs, we would feel fatigued and find it difficult to do basic daily tasks. However, most of us don’t eat the right amount of carbs.
On one end of the spectrum are men who place too much importance on protein for muscle development and try to cut out carbs completely from their diet. Diets like the ketogenic diet advocate completely cutting out carbs and eating plenty of protein and fat to compensate. On the other extreme are men who eat way too many carbs. The typical American diet is full of bread, pasta, cookies, pizza and other sources of carbohydrates. A large majority of these carbs are refined and completely stripped of their nutritional content.
While both these diets might look drastically different, they do have one thing in common. Neither of them are proper, balanced diets.
How Many Calories You Need In A Day
Each one of us needs a minimum amount of calories in a day to even be alive. All of your bodily processes require calories to be carried out, even things as basic as breathing. But apart from this basic calorie requirement, our body also uses calories for energy when you’re doing something physical. If you walk for an hour everyday, your body will use up more calories compared to someone who
How Many Carbs Does This Translate To?
Once you figure out your daily caloric requirement, you can determine how many carbs you need to eat. Your daily carb requirement should make up 45 to 65 percent of your total caloric intake. If you have a caloric requirement of 2000, 900 to 1300 of those calories should be coming from carbs. 1 gram of carbohydrates contains 4 calories. So this means you should be eating 225 g to 325 g of carbohydrates
Where To Get Your Carbs From
But just knowing how many carbs you need isn’t enough. Not all carbs are created equal. If you’re eating 225 gm of bad carbs in a day, your weight isn’t going to show any signs of improvement. Always look for the least processed varieties of carbs. Whole grains are higher in fiber, contain important nutrients in their husk and have a lower glycemic index. Vegetables, fruits and legumes are other sources of healthy carbs. Process carbs on the other hand, are very bad for you. They raise your sugar levels, contain no nutritional values and make you gain weight. Stay away from simple carbs like processed snacks, cake and candy.