Do I really need to eat carbs??*

Wednesday, 17 June 2015, By Dean Williams

Do I really need to eat Carbs??

Short answer is YES.... but before reading this please be sure to read my article What Carbs are the best?

Reading this will give you an informed understanding of what carbs I am referring to in this article and that when I say carbs it relates to many more things than a ''bread roll''.

You may be sitting there thinking.... I'm not an athlete; so I don't need carbs or I'm trying to lose weight - carbs are the enemy or I don't have a very active job therefore I won't use the energy.... I am sorry to tell you this but you are wrong on all accounts. Carbohydrates are an essential part of everyday living; necessary for the human body to function effectively. Now... if you are sitting there thinking I can function on no carbs - then I suggest you ask your co-workers/friends or partner which ''you'' they prefer.... the No-carb you or the Carb you? I think it will be the latter.

Will Carbs make you fat -

No carbohydrates will not make you fat. As you would have read my article What Carbs are the best? you would have noticed there are better carbs and worse carbs. In truth over consumption of any macro-nutrient whether it be carbs, protein or fat will cause unwanted Fat Gain.

How do Carbs Work -

After carbohydrates have been consumed they are broken down into smaller units of sugar (including glucose, fructose and galactose) in the stomach and small intestine. These small units of sugar are absorbed in the small intestine and then enter the bloodstream where they travel to the liver. Fructose and galactose are converted to glucose by the liver. Glucose is the carbohydrate transported by the bloodstream to the various tissues and organs, including the muscles and the brain, where it will be used as energy.

Why do I need them -

Carbohydrate prevents your body using protein as an energy source. When carbohydrate consumption is inadequate, protein is broken down to make glucose to maintain a constant blood glucose level. However, when proteins are broken down they lose their primary role as building blocks for muscles. In addition, protein breakdown may result in an increased stress on the kidneys. Finally, glucose is essential for the central nervous system. The brain primarily uses glucose as its energy source, and a lack of glucose can result in weakness, dizziness, and low blood glucose (Blood sugar also referred to as hypoglycaemia). Reduced blood glucose during exercise decreases performance and could lead to mental as well as physical fatigue.

What happens if I don't use them -

If you do not use the carbs you have just consumed your body will store them as glucose in the liver and the muscles in a form called glycogen. If glycogen stores are full, glucose is stored as fat. Glycogen stores are used as an energy source when the body needs more glucose than is readily available in the bloodstream (for example, during exercise). The body has limited storage capacity for glycogen (about 600g). If that 600g limit is exceed any excess energy will be stored as fat.

*Disclaimer: Individual results vary based on agreed goals. Click here for details.

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