It’s quite simple. Everything in moderation and you’ll be just fine. With that said I’m done.
But seriously, there should be no controversy with carbohydrates, but with all the different diets and studies all the info provided it can be confusing. Well, I’m going to do my best to break it down:
Let’s start with the basics- carbs are the most important energy source. It’s vital especially for aerobic exercise, but also for high intensity workouts.
Why? Without energy your muscles become fatigued and if you keep training while fatigued serious injury can result.
Who? Everybody needs them everyday especially if do added physical activity. All athletes & individuals who do vigorous workouts will definitely need to have more carbs.
What foods are carbs? So many!! The most mentioned are the breads/pastas/ rice/cereals/donuts etc BUT!-fruits, dairy, veggies, beans in addition to those mentioned before are carbs as well. So go and make yourself a fruit salad.
Why are some carbs good and others bad? Tough question, but very Important. Some carbs provide good levels of fiber (another post another day) The most important factor is in what way the food impacts your blood sugar level. This is called the GI index…the glycemic index (don’t worry about the technical term, get the concept down)
- Foods that go into your blood stream & raise the sugar level fast have a HIGH GI. For instance: a donut has a GI rank of 108 in contrast oatmeal cookies rank 79.
- Foods that take longer to digest have a lower GI and raise your sugar levels slow. These foods usually have health benefits.
This is important because when you workout you need to have carbs in your system, so timing becomes a factor. Consider this for your pre & post workout meals. After you finish working out you need to replenish yourself quickly, therefore a high GI is appropriate. The night before or a few hours before you workout or compete you need to fill up on carbs that will digest slowly & will be available during competition/training session.
Carbohydrates aren’t necessarily a bad thing, they have a bad rap, but if you eat all pasta and no fruit, then yes it’s going to be a problem. Vary it & when it comes to the breads/pastas use self control.
Hope this was able to help you better. Any carb comment/ concerns?? Let me know!