How Many Carbs per Day Is Perfect for Your Weight Loss Diet?
For too many years, weight loss experts harped on the evils of fats in the diet. That’s why so many supposed health foods trumpeted their nonfat and low-fat status. As it turned out, cutting bad on all fats wasn’t really such a good idea, since good fats were actually essential for optimal health and even for weight loss. Instead, the latest scientific findings indicated that a reduction in carbohydrate intake is actually more effective. By figuring out how many carbs per day you should really consume, you can lose weight much more effectively.
Why Should You Go On a Low Carb Diet?
There are plenty of good reasons why a low carb diet is much better for you than a low-fat diet. The short answer to this question is that low carb diet works in effecting weight loss, while low-fat diets don’t really work at all. Even when people manage to stick to this restrictive low-fat diet, the results aren’t all that encouraging.
So why do low carb diets work? Here are several reasons that explain how low carbs help with losing weight:
1. The Weight Loss is Greater with Low Carb
This is especially true when compared with low-fat diets. With some people, the difference in the amount of fat lost isn’t all that much greater. The results with low carb may only be just a little bit better.But in other instances, the difference is much more dramatic. The low carb diet can result in 2 or even 3 times as much fat loss when compared to the low-fat diet results.
What’s more, there’s a tendency with low carb diets to focus on burning off the fat from the belly. This is the deep visceral fat that isn’t just bad for your looks, but also bad for your heart. It’s also the fat that’s associated with diabetes.
2. It’s Easier to Stick to a Low Carb Diet
Various studies have confirmed this. People just tend to find it easier to maintain a low carb diet than a low-fat diet. Part of the reason is probably that you can eat until you’re full when you’re on a low carb diet. Also, fat adds a lot of flavor into your food, so you don’t have to endure tasteless “healthy” food to lose weight.
3. Your Level of Triglycerides Goes Down
Triglycerides are a type of fat that you find in your blood. When you consume calories and you don’t exercise enough so that you have extra calories you don’t use, your body turns those calories into triglycerides. These are then stored in fat cells.
Having a high level of triglycerides is one of the major risk factors of heart disease. But with a low carb diet, you can get your level of triglycerides to go down.
4. You Can Eat Until Fullness
The problem with low-fat diets is that you’re always obsessing about portion control and counting calories. So you generally have to stop eating even when you’re still hungry.
With a low carb diet, it’s possible for you to eat until you feel full. That’s because the diet invariably reduces your appetite, so you don’t feel like eating too much anyway.
Also, when you’re on a low carb diet and you eat the same amount of food as a low-fat dieter eats, you’ll find that you generally consume the same number of calories (or even less). It’s just that with low carb, you don’t feel hungry anymore.
5. Your “GOOD” Cholesterol Level Goes Up
There are 2 kinds of cholesterol: LDL and HDL. The HDL is the “good” cholesterol, as it takes bad cholesterol away from parts of your body to the liver for extraction or reuse. Having high levels of HDL cholesterol is crucial in keeping heart disease at bay.
The good news is that low carb diets tend to elevate HDL cholesterol levels, so minimizing carb intake is good for your heart. In contrast, the increase in HDL levels is less with low-fat diets, and in some cases, these diets can even result in lower HDL cholesterol levels.
6. Low Carb Diets Reduce The Damage of “BAD” Cholesterol
LDL (“bad”) cholesterol comes in 2 forms. One form is in small dense molecules, which can penetrate arterial walls and lodge in arteries. The other form is in larger molecules, and this form doesn’t really do much damage to arteries at all.
It’s been found that when you’re on a low carb diet, your bad cholesterol molecules can turn from the small and dangerous into the more benign larger molecule. While consuming fewer carbs doesn’t really reduce your LDL cholesterol levels, at least they’re now in a less harmful form.
7. Low Carb Diets are Great for Diabetics
This is especially true for those with type II diabetes. Although it’s crucial that if you have diabetes you need to consult with your doctor before you make any significant change to your diet, you may find that your doctor may actually recommend a low carb diet if you do have diabetes.
The problem for diabetics is that they can’t shuttle the glucose into cells. This leads to excess glucose in their bloodstream, and that’s rather toxic for them. That’s why they can’t really have too much carb since carbs are broken down into glucose.
How Many Carbs per Day Should You Have?
How many carbs should you eat a day? The short answer here is that there is no simple answer to this question. It depends on too many factors, such as your gender, age, metabolism, and activity levels. You also have to consider your food culture as well as your own personal preferences to calculate how many carbs a day to lose weight.
To figure out how many carbs a day you need for your low carb diet, you should probably just follow this simple guide based on the type of person you are and your health goals.
1. You are An Active Person Who Wants to Stay Healthy and Maintain Your Weight
If this is the case, then you’re good with 100 to 150 grams of carbohydrates a day. This can help maintain your weight without too much effort at all. You can even lose weight with a carb intake in this range, though you have to control the size of your food portions and the number of calories you consume.
Your carbs should come from veggies, and you’re allowed to eat as many vegetables as you can to make you feel full. You should also include a few pieces of fruit several times each day. Your diet can also make room for healthy starches, as long as you don’t overdo it. So your diet can also contain comparatively healthier grains like oats and rice. You can also put in potatoes and sweet potatoes.
2. You Want to Lose Weight Without Exerting Too Much Effort
If you want to shed pounds easily, you can reduce your carb intake to just 50 to 100 grams a day. This is the same amount of carbs recommended for those who are especially sensitive to carbohydrates.
The carbs can come from plenty of vegetables, along with perhaps 2 to 3 fruits per day. You do have to minimize your consumption of starchy carbs so you can limit your carb intake to less than 100 grams per day.
3. You Really Want to Lose Weight Quickly
If this is your goal (or if you’re already diabetic or obese), you need to limit how many carbs per day you take to merely 20 to 50 grams a day. This will put your body into ketosis, with ketone bodies supplying the energy you need for your brain. Your body simply burns off your body fat to supply the energy it needs for your body functions.
With this few calorie in your diet, you’re more likely to lose your appetite. Since you don’t really feel like eating much anyway, the weight loss becomes much easier and quicker too.
You need to identify the veggies with the lowest carb content, which includes broccoli, bell peppers, zucchini, mushrooms, asparagus, and spinach. There’s a lot more of these low carb veggies, so it’s not as if you’re going to eat the same veggies day in and day out.
You can also try foods like seeds, nuts, and perhaps some avocados. Berries can work too, especially with whipped cream.
Good Carbs and Bad Carbs
While you do still need carbs in your diet, you have to make sure that these carbs come from healthier sources. You should avoid highly refined carbs, which can include snack foods as well as white bread and white flour. You should also avoid sugary foods and drinks, such as sodas and candy. These are packed with calories, but they sure are nutritionally deficient.
You should concentrate on getting enough fiber instead, and that comes from many whole fruits and vegetables. Start minimizing how many carbs per day you consume and limit your carbs to the “good” kinds and you can be on your way to losing weight and getting healthier!