In this article, we are going to discuss and answer the question “What percentage of your diet should be carbs?”. I will also include the types of carbs, the importance of carbs in your diet, and the carbs that would cause belly fat.
What percentage of your diet should be carbs?
The percentage range of carbs in your diet should be between 45% to 65% of your calories per day. Carbohydrates are essential as the main source of energy for the body organs and the brain.
Not having enough carbs would lead to hunger and low blood sugar known as hypoglycemia. Carbs come from different food sources. They are called macronutrients which include plant sources, and processed food.
Plant sources of carbs
Carbs come from natural sources. Fruit and vegetable food group, fat food group from seeds and nuts. Protein food group from milk. It is also included in beans, peas, and lentils. The sugar in milk is called lactose, and the sugar in fruit is fructose.
Processed carbs are table sugar, it is produced and added to many food products. Sugar can be found in sweetened beverages, candies, cakes, and chocolate.
Complex versus simple carbs
Simple carbs are carbs that contain simple sugar and have a high glycemic index which spikes your blood sugar. These include refined flour, bread, and sweets.
Complex carbs contain fiber in them which makes them low in glycemic index. This means that complex carbs do not spike your blood sugar. These include grains, legumes, fruits, and vegetables. It also includes dairy products.
How important are carbs for your health?
Carbs are important for your health. It provides the energy to carry out your day. Glucose is used by cells and burned for energy.
The food you eat is digested from complex carbs to much simpler carbs, glucose is used by the body for energy. Excess carbs are stored as energy in the liver as glycogen, or as fat in the body.
Carbs are important for health due to the fiber present in them. Fiber is crucial to promote a healthy bowel movement to add bulk and reduce constipation. Also, fiber presence in food makes you feel fuller, thus you eat less food.
What are good choices of carbs to pick?
Picking good carbs is a part of a healthy diet. Foods that should be included are natural and low index. Food such as fruits and vegetables are high in fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Picking fresh or frozen fruit is the best option.
Frozen fruits can be added to smoothies to add vitamins and minerals. Fruit juices contain far less fiber, as juicing reduces the fiber content by so much. That is why it is important to pick fruits over fruit juices.
Go for whole grains to include more complex B vitamins and fiber in your diet. Processed grains remove all the fiber and vitamin content from them.
Go for lower-fat dairy choices rather than full-fat content. To reduce your saturated fat from milk and dairy milk, you should not exceed more than 10% of your calories per day.
Going for beans and lentils due to their richness in vitamins, and minerals. They contain complex carbs in them which promotes satiety. Making a better food choice of beans rather than high calorie, and fatty food.
Stay away from high sugary food, rich in simple sugar. Sugar in excess can lead to weight gain and sugar addiction.
Control your portion sizes, reducing your portion size from carbs would help cut down the calories, and then you lose weight.
What carbs cause belly fat?
There are certain types of carbs that would increase the likelihood of getting fat around your belly area. Food that contains high amounts of simple carbs. Flours that have been refined should be avoided.
This includes all food including refined flour from any baked goods, cookies, pasta, and cakes. Instead have complex, low glycemic food like fruits, and vegetables. Make sure to increase your fiber intake to feel fuller.
In this article, we discussed and answered “ What percentage of your diet should be carbs?”.I also included the types of carbs, the importance of carbs in your diet, and the carbs that would cause belly fat.