How Many Carbs to Eat Per Day for Successful Weight Loss
If only there was a magic number to identify exactly how many carbs one should eat for successful weight loss. Fortunately, though, a reduced daily carb intake can certainly contribute not only to weight loss, but successful weight loss.
If only there was a magic number to identify exactly how many carbs one should eat for successful weight loss. Imagine a world of health with lowered rates of diabetes, heart disease, and other chronic diseases associated with obesity. With overweight and obesity on the rise, that number seems more important than ever. Unfortunately, weight loss is not a magic trick and individual differences require individual plans. Fortunately, though, a reduced daily carb intake can certainly contribute not only to weight loss, but successful weight loss.
Daily Carb Intake
So how many carbs per day should you be eating? The genuine fact that everyone has unique genetic blueprints, different lifestyles and cultures, etc. makes that question a tough arrow to the bull's eye. However, established guidelines allow the arrow to land at least on the dart board. Most healthcare experts suggest a daily carb intake of 30 to 35 percent of total calories per day, especially for weight loss, with adequate sources of lean protein and healthy fats. However, other recommendations may suggest up to 65 percent. But when you think of carbs, there is a vast array of sources – grains, milk, dairy products, fruits, vegetables, desserts – and should not be treated the same.
The issue with carbs is this: The general American population is filling their diet with added sugars from convenience products and desserts. Essentially, the body is loading up on more calories and sugars rather than nutrients and fiber. The body appreciates carbs, just from nutrient-dense sources that include whole grains, fruits and vegetables, and some dairy products.
Low-Carb Diet and Weight Loss
Stripping away high-carb, sweet desserts and products naturally reduces calories, thus generally resulting to weight loss. Since there is no magic carbohydrate number, take simple measures to follow a low-carb diet:
• Skip the Bag of Chips
Chips and other prepackaged snack foods are often loaded with added sugars and unwanted ingredients. Low-carb snacks include chopped veggies (carrots, bell peppers, cucumbers), nuts and seeds, nut butters, and cheese sticks.
• Go for Grain Cereals
Although grain cereals are a carbohydrate source, they are loaded with fiber and nutrients. Instead of sugary cereals, fill your breakfast bowl with a serving (approximately ¾ cup) of whole grains. Add nuts and seeds for added crunch and healthy fats. The fiber and fats are an excellent combination to keep hunger reduced until lunchtime.
• Greek Yogurt
Traditional yogurts are often loaded with sugar. Greek yogurt offers high protein, thus keeping you full for longer periods of time. It is important, though, to be weary on added sugars. Although Greek yogurt is looked to be more nutritious, it can also be filled with sugar and lead to high-carb intake.
• Lettuce Wraps
Instead of resorting to standard sandwich bread, fill lettuce leaves with favorite toppings. Load up on lean meats, beans and legumes, and fresh veggies to amplify the protein and fiber content.
Instead of mounds of carb-rich pasta, use a spiralizer to create a noodle-like, low-carb alternative. Zucchini is a common spiralized option that can be topped with a chicken breast and extra-virgin olive oil or a tomato-based sauce filled with ground beef or turkey.
• Go Natural
And no, that does not mean to only choose food products slapped with an "all natural" label. Instead of going for those sugary desserts, go with more naturally-sweetened options. Choose fresh strawberries, a crunchy apple, or Greek yogurt to satisfy that sweet tooth.
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