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Diet and carbohydrates: everything you need to know

Diet and carbohydrates: everything you need to know

People say carbohydrates and sugars make you fat and cause cravings. But are they really to be banished from our kitchens?

Today we will talk about diet and carbohydrates, a relationship that should be analyzed more deeply and accurately. Often, the common belief is that carbohydrates make you fat, and it is better to eliminate them completely from the diet, in order to lose weight and being healthier. But things are not quite so… find out the truth!

No carbs diet: does it work?

Bread, pasta and pizza, or carbohydrates lover, there is a great news for you: if you struggle with your weight and eliminating carbohydrates from diet is a big problem, do not worry, you will not have to avoid them anymore.

Completely removing them from your diet, in fact, is a mistake: if you eat the right amount associated with proteins, you can still lose weight. This was demonstrated by a recent study published in The New England Journal of Medicine. Eating too many proteins, as suggested by the most popular diets, without providing enough sugar is counterproductive, because in this way your body will start eating your lean body mass. You will lose weight, of course, but also your muscles.

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A no-carb diet (the so-called Atkins diet) has many problems and negative consequences that it is better to avoid. Our advice is to see a nutritionist before making radical decisions about your food regime.

How many carbs per day do you need to consume?

Let’s see what should be the daily carb intake and what are “the best” carbs for a balanced diet which provides our body with the right energy.

The right carb doses are those of the Mediterranean diet, according to which 50% of your daily calories should come from carbohydrates. In particular, we should implement this division: in the morning, 30-40g of oat flakes with almonds and walnuts; lunch, 70-80g pasta, or 180 to 200g of gnocchi; dinner, 60g, that is a slice of bread.

For a balanced diet, experts recommend that carbohydrates should account for 65% of total calories ingested, while in a focused weight loss they should be 45%. Give priority to fruits rich in fiber and vegetables, because they contain a lot of water, natural sugars and dietary fiber, essential for preventing constipation.

Choose whole grains rather than refined ones, a healthier choice on many fronts. Do not avoid milk, cheese, yogurt and other dairy products, but opt only for the light, low-fat content versions.

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Too many carbohydrates? The consequences

Carbohydrates provide energy to our body to perform all our daily activities, and to support the biological functions. Food naturally contains them, but you can also found them in refined form. They can be used on their own (sucrose), or into foods and beverages (sucrose, glucose syrup with a variable content of fructose), in order to increase their pleasantness.

What happens if we eat too many carbohydrates? Completely eliminating them is not correct, but at the same time, we must avoid to take more than our daily recommended dose, because this may have some consequences. For example, bad breath, feeling of fatigue and exhaustion, digestive problems and difficulty in losing weight.

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