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When it comes to eating carbs, we are generally confused because carbohydrates have gained a bad reputation for themselves. They are believed to be calorie dense and spike blood sugar levels. But that is not the entire truth. Carbohydrates are necessary for our body they supply us with constant energy and also help in the upkeep of various metabolic, respiratory, digestive, immune functions that take place in our body to sustain life. All carbs are not bad carbs. In fact, doctors and experts believe that intake of complex carbohydrates is a good idea as it releases energy slowly and doesn t lead to a sudden surge in sugar levels. Your diet should comprise of total 50 to 55 per cent of carbohydrates.
What time you have your carbs also make a difference. Here are the best times to have your carbs:
Breakfast: This is the apt time to eat your carbs as your body needs energy and glucose after fasting all night during sleep. When you eat carbs first thing in the morning, your body uses them to replenish your cells in the body and it doesn t get stored as fat. So opt for carbohydrate-rich breakfast like oatmeal, upma, poha or paratha and have some proteins to go with it like boiled eggs or egg white omelette (with bread), protein shake or some sprouted grains as it is best to consume protein along with your carbs.
Before workout: Chuck the pre-workout supplements. Instead, eat a carb-rich snack or meal as your body needs the energy to burn calories and to lift weight plates.
Post workout: Of course, you will need proteins post workout but make sure that you eat some amounts of carbs too, like a brown bread chicken sandwich which is a great combination of carb-protein snack. Carbs help deliver glucose to the muscle cells, which speeds up the delivery of nutrients (like protein) to the broken down muscle tissue.
The right way to have your carbs:
Ms Shalini Arvind- Chief Dietician- Fortis Hospitals, Bangalore says that some of the popular carb-rich food items have become controversial. But if these food items are prepared in a healthy manner and are consumed in moderation they can be one of the healthiest carb options. For instance, potatoes-baked or boiled and preferably with skin (whenever possible) is a healthy option over other processed, deeply fried varieties of potatoes. Rice, too when taken in required moderate quantities along with other protein and fibre gives satiety and wholesome nutrition. Remember eating more number of chapattis than required, definitely does the same harm to your body like overboard with rice. Always choose complex carbohydrates that are less processed, including whole grains and fruit over more refined and energy-dense forms such as cakes, pastries, pastas, noodles, sweets and soft drinks. Don t forget to have a variety of vegetables daily.
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