Carbs, carbs, carbs! Everybody’s favourite macronutrient and the first thing that we try to reduce when dieting! But is it right to have carb fear? Do you know how much to eat and of which type?
The amount of carbohydrate that you should be eating each day varies from person to person but in an ideal world, it should make up approximately 20-35% of your overall daily energy intake. The rest of your daily energy intake should be made up from protein and fat. To work out what your ideal intake is, get in touch here to book in for a free health assessment.
The best type of carbohydrates to fill up with are going to be one of two types. Type 1 are low in calories but high in density, think along the lines of fibre rich fruit and vegetables and sweet potatoes. Type 2 are carbohydrates that also contain the gut filling bonus of being high in protein such as lentils, pulses and rice. Not only are these types of carbohydrates the most waist friendly and filling option, but you’ll also get the added bonus of them being loaded with essential vitamins and minerals which contribute to your overall health.
As with any diet plan, it’s often a case of checking out the nutritional labels and working out your numbers!
For example, if you were to consume a standard packet of salt and vinegar crisps you’d only be getting 13g of carbohydrate, but just 1g of protein and 130 calories. The numbers don’t sound so bad but imagine that bag of crisps in your stomach…you’ll be hungry again in less than hour and looking for another quick fix. Because of the lack of protein in the crisps, you’ll be in a blood sugar crash and be looking for something equally as ‘quick fix’ as the crisps. However, if you were to opt for half a tub of lentil and vegetable soup you be getting approx 28g of carbohydrates but that will come with 13.5g protein and for just 250 calories you’ll be fuller for much longer meaning that you won’t want or need that second unhealthy carbohydrate based snack!
Starchy carbohydrates such as bread, pasta, potatoes and rice should not be the main focus of your meal. Stick to a fist sized amount for women and two for men as a starting point. The rest of your meal should be made from proteins, healthy fats and plenty of veggies!