How many carbs per day should I aim for on a Low Carb diet?
Searching through the vast number of recommendations for how many grams of carbs you should be consuming on a low carb diet, it can get confusing. That’s because there is no official definition of a ‘low carb diet’.
Research often uses many different classifications, but as a general overview, a lower-carb diet is one where between 20-30% of your overall daily energy intake comes from carbs. This is roughly <130g of carbs (total) per day.
The team at Low Carb Australia have a pretty relaxed approach and believe individuals should experiment to find out what works best for them.
A familiar term you will run across is “metabolic resistance” or “carbohydrate sensitivity/intolerance”, meaning different bodies have different capabilities to handling carbohydrates.
There really is no one level that is best for everyone.
So where do you start and what level is right for you?
Creating your own customized approach will afford you the process of finding what level of carbs might be right for your own goals. This might be weight loss or maintenance, or perhaps you are on a path to reduce inflammation or be able to reduce medications with your doctor’s help.
Whatever the reason, finding an amount of carbohydrates you can take in that meet your goals and leaves you feeling satisfied is where you’ll find your balance.
This will be your sweet spot until you note any changes that warrant additional modifications.
Some can take it or leave it and others want it all, and they want it now!
We have to take into account our own personalities when it comes to dieting. We all have the friend who is happy to have a handful of berries when others aren’t happy until the whole punnet is consumed. So, for those who struggle with moderation, they need to be much stricter with what they allow themselves, at least until they have reached their goal.
This is another reason why one way to follow a low carb diet doesn’t suit all.
In the end, there’s no right or wrong way, it’s just a matter of knowing which strategy works better for you and suits your personality. If you are not a naturally moderate person when it comes to food, trying to eat moderately often can make you feel that you ‘could do better’ and you ‘should be stricter’. That’s a lot of stress.
Similarly, if you try to abstain when you know you just need a mouthful or two to satisfy your needs, you can drive yourself to the point of distraction and become almost obsessive over food, which can lead to a dangerous path for some people.
Food for thought
There is plenty of research to suggest that people with higher levels of fat mass don’t respond as well to carbohydrates as those with lower levels of body fat.
This leads to those with a higher body fat percentage tending to fare better on a lower carb diet due to insulin resistance. The more body fat you carry, the better your results will be if you keep your carbs as low as you can without it causing you too much stress to maintain.
Most importantly, food quality does matter and will play a key role in both your health and longevity so, however you choose to follow a low carb diet, eating whole and natural foods is the best way to go. You can almost never go wrong with this.
The bottom line is find a level where you are getting balance, variety, desired weight loss, and satiety.
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All the information on this site is intended for providing information only. It does not constitute medical or nutritional advice, is not tailored to any reader’s personal situation and readers should seek their own medical advice before making any decisions related to their nutrition and health.