One of the most basic questions that you might ask if you are trying to slim down and you are not going carb-free is how many carbs do you need per day to lose weight?
In this day and age of dieting, there’s no doubt that almost everyone seems to be on some form of low-carb diet, trying to melt their belly fat and finally gain control over their body.
While it’s true that following a low carb diet definitely has some unique advantages when it comes to losing fat, the truth is, you really don’t need to cut carbs totally out of the picture for your diet to be effective.
The key is to control the amount of carbs that you consume every day and make them work for you instead of against you.
So with that said, let’s take a quick look at some the key points you need to consider when figuring out just how many carbs you cab eat per day and still lose weight.
Basic Carb Requirements
The first key point to consider is the basic carbohydrate requirements in order to sustain life.
In reality, you really don’t need to eat carbohydrates to stay alive.
When you are on a very low carb or no-carb diet, your body enters a state called ketosis and starts producing something called ketones bodies that is uses for energy.
Ketones start fueling your brain and all the vital life functions to maintain homeostasis in the body.
However, this isn’t to say that this is an optimal state for your body to be in.
This is simply making a statement for the case that you really don’t need carbs in order to survive.
The Downside Of A Low-Carb Diet
The truth is, there are many people who try a Ketogenic diet and just don’t feel all that well in a state of ketosis.
These individuals will start feeling what’s known as “brain fog” along with low energy levels that borderline on fatigue.
In this case, 100 grams of carbohydrates is the bare minimum that must be eaten to avoid this undesirable state.
One hundred is about the average number of carbs required by the brain to function properly each day and an amount that will keep you out of a state of ketosis.
In addition to keeping you just out of ketosis, maintaining an average of 100 grams of carbs or more each day tends to produce an overall higher metabolic rate, as carbohydrate intake is associated with proper thyroid function.
How Many Carbs For My Activity Level?
The second thing that you need to consider when trying to determine how much carbs you need every day to lose weight is your daily activity levels.
If you are someone who engages in vigorous physical activity such as some type of resistance training every day, you will need to consume more carbs per day than someone who lives a more sedentary lifestyle.
Your body is simply going to need more glucose for energy production when you perform an anaerobic workout and without it, your performance as well as your overall energy levels will suffer significantly.
If this is the case for you, simply add about 5 grams of carbs per two working sets of any resistance training workout that you do.
Five grams of glycogen is about the average amount that will be depleted per set of an exercise, so this will ensure that you have enough fuel in your system to maintain maximum performance.
In addition to that, if you’re performing high intensity cardio training such as HIIT, adding about another 20-25 grams of carbs per 15 minutes performed would be ideal.
If you only perform lower-intensity aerobic exercise such as taking a light walk, your body will be using stored fat for fuel so there is no reason that you will need to eat any additional carbs.
Choose Your Carbs Wisely
Once you have figured how many carbs you need per day to maintain proper energy levels and still lose weight, it’s time to take a look at the best carbs that you can eat.
The best sources of carbs for weight loss are going to be the most unprocessed and slow burning types available, such as oats, brown rice, quinoa and sweet potatoes.
Add to those some selected fresh fruits and plenty of fresh green and leafy vegetables.
Carbs with a low glycemic index are going to be best because they keep your blood sugar levels stabilized and keep you feeling energized without producing any crashes like sugar would.
So without a doubt, the answer is that you do need some carbs in your diet each day, usually around 100 grams, to produce enough energy for maximum performance while still being able to lose weight.
It’s all a matter of choosing the right types of low-glycemic carbs and integrating them into your diet properly, maintaining a calorie balance where you will be burning off more than you take in.
Follow this protocol and you should have no trouble eating a carbohydrate rich diet and still seeing the weight loss results that you are trying to achieve.