Do you know what’s the most searched topic on Google? it’s “how to lose weight quickly”. Weight loss has become a trend especially in women.
To quickly achieve it , another thing that’s gaining popularity is “low carb diet”.
Ever since low carb rose to fame because of it’s quick way of dropping the pounds, it also has completely flummoxed everyone.
People don’t exactly understand what exactly carbohydrates is. They feel that its an hindrance to their weight loss journey. But that’s not exactly true.
This article will help you to understand the whole idea about carbohydrates along with it’s per day consumption to make sure that you lose weight properly.
What Are Carbohydrates?
Carbohydrates mainly known as carbs are naturally occurring sugars and starches that is broken down into glucose to use as a energy sources by the body. Carbohydrates are also known as saccharide.
Carbohydrates are the macronutrients that a body requires in large amount for it’s proper functioning. The macronutrients other than carbohydrates are protein and fats. These macronutrients are very imperative for body and must be obtained through diet as body cannot produce on its own.
• 1gram of carbohydrates= 4 calories(approximately)
• The National Institutes Of Health(NIH) recommends 135 grams of carbs for adults.
• For all age groups and sexes, recommend carbs intake is in between 45% to 65% of total calories.
Classification Of Carbohydrates
Carbohydrates are mainly classified on the basis of absorption and digestion of sugar as: Simple and complex carbs.
Simple Carbs: As the name suggests, contains one(monosaccharides) or two sugars(disaccharides) and therefore forms a shorter chain of molecules that can be easily absorbed and digested.
Simple carbohydrates provide short term energy to the body as its consumption leads to an instant spike in blood glucose.
Simple carbohydrates are found in milk products and whole fruit which is good for health as these are rich in vitamins and minerals. However, simple carbohydrates are also present in sugary drinks like soda, packaged cookies and candy that are made of refined sugars and lack nutrition value, vitamins and minerals. These kind of foods are referred as “empty calories” and it’s consumption in large amount results in weight gain, increased risk of heart disease and type-2 diabetes.
Complex Carbs: Composed of three or more sugars(polysaccharides). It forms a longer chain of molecules due to which they take time to get absorbed and digested.
Complex Carbohydrates provides sustained energy or we can say more lasting source of energy as compared to simple carbohydrates.
Complex Carbohydrates are mainly fiber and starch and these are present in food like whole grains, beans, nuts, vegetables, oats, corn, cereal and rice.
Complex Carbohydrates acts as a shield for a body against diseases like type-2 diabetes, heart diseases and also helps to lose weight.
It is recommended to include more of a complex Carbs in your diets as compared to simple Carbs.
However it is not necessary that all complex carbs are good so always try to add healthy complex carbs in your diet.
You can not totally remove carbs as they are an essential part of a healthy diet.
So load your plate with Good carbs like vegetables, whole fruits, nuts, seeds etc and stay away from bad carbs like soda, ice cream, fruit juices, white bread etc.
How many Carbs per day to lose weight?
It’s a very tricky question to answer how many carbs should one consume per day to lose weight as it depends on various factors like an individual age, sex, physical activity, lifestyle etc.
Our main aim should be cutting of bad carbs each day from our diet and addition of good carbs which are mainly complex carbs in our diet per day. Also, don’t do the mistake of removing all carbs from our diet in order to quickly lose weight as it may lead to fatigue, brain fog and other miserable symptoms.
So below are the range of carbs intake per day according to your requirement of weight loss.
400-600 calories of carbs:
• This approximately equals to 100 to 150 grams of carbs intake per day.
• beneficial for those who do daily exercises and are active and want to maintain their weight and don’t have extra weights that they want to lose.
• all seasonal vegetables
• Seasonal fruits
• Healthy grains like rice and oats
• Lentils( dal)
• Eggs and fish
• Healthy starches like potatoes and sweet potatoes
• No processed foods
200-400 calories of carbs:
• Constitutes approximately about 50 to 100 grams of carbs intake per day.
• Beneficial for those who are not physically active and want to reduce weight without doing any exercises.
• More vegetables
• 2-3 pieces of fruits
• Minimal amount of starchy carbs like sweet potatoes
• Minimal amount of brown rice
100-200 calories of carbs:
• Constitutes to about 25 to 50 grams of carbs intake per day( a kind of very low carbs diet).
• This approach is for those people who are suffering from obesity or diabetes and have a lot of pounds to lose.
• This is a kind of ketogenic diet as idea behind this is to take more calories from protein and fat and keeping carbs intake in your body as less as possible.
• A low carb food like a almond milk
• Seafood’s like fish and shellfish
• Low carb vegetables
• 1-2 hard boiled eggs
What should be on my plate to reduce weight?
If you want to quickly shred off the extra weights from your body then your first step should be to avoid all junk and processed foods like chips, soda, burger, pizza etc. In short you have to avoid any unhealthy carbs.
A healthy plate should be a good balance of mainly 3 ingredients: fiber, protein, complex carbs along with some probiotics.
Fiber: Fiber is a type of carbohydrates that cannot be broken down into sugar molecules and it passed through the body undigested.
Certain fibers soak up the water in the intestines and this gives the feeling of fullness and this further helps in weight loss.
So, foods that contains fibers are as follows:
Seasonal vegetables: Almost all the seasonal vegetables contains significant amount of fibers like spinach(2.2%), tomatoes (1.8%), broccoli (2.6%).
Fruits: fruits are also great source of fiber like apple(2.4%),pears(3.1%), strawberries (2%).
Sprouts: sprouts are also very rich in fiber and contains about almost 2.6%.
Other fiber rich foods are:
• Cauliflower mash
• Pomegranate Seeds
Complex Carbs: Complex carbs as already discussed are longer chain molecules which takes time to digest.
Some complex carbs foods are:
Quinoa: very nutritious, rich in many minerals along with innumerous health benefits. Cooked quinoa contains 21.3% carbs.
Oats: Oats are healthiest whole grain food. Raw oats contain 66% carbs.
Chickpeas: contains many vitamins and minerals including iron, phosphorus and B- vitamins. Cooked chickpeas contains 27.4% carbs.
Other complex carbs foods for weight loss are:
• Buck wheat
• Sweet potatoes
Protein: Protein is an essential nutrient that helps to build and repair muscle, tissue, skin, nails and hair. It helps to increase metabolism and also beneficial for quick weight loss.
Eggs- highly rich in protein and also they are rich in vitamins B-12, zinc, iron , selenium and vitamin A.
Lentils: lentils are rich in protein and contains about 17.9 grams protein.
Beans: there are variety of beans available in which kidney beans are one of the most commonly consumed beans. It consists of approximately 13.4 grams of protein.
Other protein rich foods are:
• Black beans
• Greek yogurt
Probiotics: Probiotics are beneficial Bacteria and yeasts. These are live microorganisms that have various health benefits.
Some probiotics food for weight loss are:
Yogurt: it is one of the most popular probiotic food.
Green banana- These are the bananas that are not fully ripe and are a rich source of proteins.
Other probiotics foods are:
• Apple cider vinegar
In order to lose weight quickly, apart from keeping check on the carbs intake per day, you should also take care of the following things listed below:
• Daily drink approx. 3- 3.5 L of water
• Take 7-8 hours of good sleep
• Avoid junk and processed foods as much as possible
• Not all carbs are bad
• Extremely low carb diets should be followed under the guidance of nutritionist.
• Make a habit of eating healthy foods
• Do some physical activity daily