So are carbs healthy or not?
Exactly what you might not want to hear:
Everybody is different, and you never really know until you experiment for yourself.
Similar to an individually-designed training program that targets your weaknesses and ensures your success, an individualized approach to nutrition is the only assured path to fueling your body appropriately.
The answer, then? Yes and no!
Just as we need water, our bodies do need some carbs. Vegetables and fruit are filled with water, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
It all depends on what kind of activity you are doing.
Carbs used appropriately can have a substantial impact on both performance, and on increasing muscle mass and decreasing fat mass.
If your goal is to improve body composition, that often means losing fat mass. In order to apply the principle of blood sugar management, that means carbohydrate experimentation. If you are trying to reduce fat mass, you need to tackle managing blood sugars effectively. Start by restricting carbohydrate consumption, specifically sugary drinks and starchy carbohydrates that rapidly shuttle glucose into the bloodstream.
What does this look like? Meats, vegetables, nuts and seeds.
This is for people who already have a healthy body composition and can manage their blood sugar effectively.
Males - 10-20% body fat or lower
Females - 18-28% body fat or lower
The amount of carbs will be dependent upon the type of training. There are three types of training: CNS-dominant, cellular, and a hybrid of the two. What is listed below are ratios of carbohydrates to protein (CHO:PRO) that are to be consumed post-training.
CNS-Dominant: Weightlifting with loads roughly 70% of your 1RM or more.
Prescription: 1:1 (CHO:PRO)
Cellular-Dominant: Sustainable aerobic work.
Prescription: 4:1 (CHO:PRO)
Hybrid: Both CNS and Cellular.
Prescription: 2:1 (CHO:PRO)
For the average person, the majority of your carbohydrates should come from low-starch, high-fiber, water-rich vegetables to prevent excess glucose and the storage of sugar in your cells.
For clients focused on performance, more carbohydrates can find a place in your diet for supporting muscle growth.