Carbohydrates and Diet: How Much Do You Really Need in a Day?


It is mind-boggling to understand how our bodily processes are so intricately entwined and need careful planning of our daily diet to achieve a state of good health and wellness. In my opinion, most of the weight related issues are the outcome of a bad dietary pattern or a lifestyle that is too sluggish to be able to maintain a healthy body. You are what you eat, this has been repeated over and over again and that is exactly why we need to understand the role of various food groups in health maintenance. In this article, we’re going to talk about one of the major food groups that has been shunned for years – carbohydrates. But wait, are they really that bad and do carbohydrates really make you gain weight? Let us find out.Before we go on to discuss the amount of carbohydrates you should be consuming in a day, it is important to understand the role that this food group plays in our health. Our body is programmed to derive energy primarily from carbohydrates. The body is equipped to extract sugar (glucose) and energy from carbs. It must be kept in mind that the brain feeds primarily on glucose to function and carry out all essential processes. Therefore, the significance of carbohydrates in a smooth supply of energy in the body is unquestionable. However, note that excess carb consumption, after a point, starts getting accumulated in the fat reserves of the body. So, when it comes to carbohydrates, one does not need to shun them but tread with caution.

Carbohydrates and weight loss

Why people are often asked to cut down on carbohydrates to facilitate weight loss is primarily because when you workout, the body uses energy – which is getting derived from carbohydrates – and once you cut down on this source of energy the body then switches to fat for energy derivation and in the process facilitates weight loss. It would be absolutely wrong to blame carbs for weight gain, “the problem is not with carbohydrates, it is vital for the functioning of the body. The problem is with the kind of diets that we eat which are predominantly carb-based. We are eating more carbohydrates than what our body requires, at the same time we just aren’t eating enough of protein. The balance needs to be achieved and I am sure if all of us eat a balanced diet and exercise in moderation, there will be no weight or health related issues,” noted Dr. Rupali Datta, Consultant Nutritionist, Fortis Escorts, New Delhi.

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