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Can you eat carbohydrates during exercise | Carbohydrates before or after workout | Carbohydrates and workout plans

Carbohydrates and exercise



So finally you decided to reduce that extra fat from your body, now you are all set with your exercise routine and motivation. We all know that exercise is essential for weight to lose and avoiding certain foods including carbohydrates and fats can help to reduce weight even faster, but it is necessary to understand what food we should avoid while on the strict exercise routine and whether we should eat carbs and fat or not, are the topics of discussion. So let's start with the macronutrients, the carbs, proteins, and fats.

1. Carbohydrates - We all think that it is essential to stop carb completely while on diet or exercise to lose weight, but that's not true- carbohydrate is one of the most essential food nutrients during your exercise routine. So YES you can eat healthy carbohydrates during your exercise routine. Let's go a little deeper to understand what our body does to the carb while exercising.

So lets start from the beginning, Carbohydrates breakdowns and converts to glucose in the stomach, this glucose is absorbed in the intestine and goes to the blood stream, our body cells use this glucose as energy and after our body has used the energy it needs, the leftover glucose is stored as glycogen in the liver and muscle. While we do an intense workout the glycogen stored in the muscle is used first to give energy in the first few minutes. So in this way carbohydrate gets utilized as a source of energy during exercise


So what if you don't take carbohydrates during heavy exercise?

When there is enough carbohydrate to be used as the energy, it helps to prevent the Protein from being used as a source of energy, so if you don't have enough carbs, then the body will start to break down the proteins to supply energy. As protein has other essential things to do for the body such as; build the muscle mass of our body, it is also vital for the structural component of body tissues such as hair, bone, collagen, etc. That's why it is important to have carbohydrates on the daily work out routine. 


When carbohydrate is helpful?

Whenever you do short intense or heavy exercise, the immediate source of energy comes from the stored glycogen, so helpful when you exercise more and heavy. On the other hand, carbohydrate can also be used during long and less intense workout depending on, duration of exercise, intensity and calorie consumption. 

How much carbohydrate needed during exercise?

The amount of carbohydrate needed while on exercise or workout routine depends on own height, weight, work out intensity, duration of the workout, type of carbohydrate food (simple or complex) and carb consumption before or after the workout. You should ask your trainer or nutritionist for an accurate amount of carbohydrate to be taken during exercising as it varies for every individual.

Carbohydrate before or after a workout?

Again it depends on your workout plan. If you plan for intense, heavy and muscle building workout, then the best time to eat carbohydrates is two hours before your workout. Take about 45 grams to 50 grams of carbs with your regular pre-workout protein, depending on your height, weight and body type.
If you plan for a slow, less intense fat loss workout, then it's best to take a small portion of carbohydrates (simple) after you finish your exercise, as it will help you to fuel you up a little bit keeping your energy intact. Again amount varies for every individual.
It is essential to keep yourself hydrated during exercise, so drink sufficient amount of water. 

Which carbohydrates are best to eat during exercise routine?

Simple carbohydrates, after a workout, as they are the quickest source of energy because they digest rapidly and reach bloodstream immediately.
They are glucose, fructose(sugar from fruit) and sucrose(table sugar).
Complex carbohydrates(good carbs), 2 hours before or 2 hours after the workout is a good idea.
They are grains, cereal, starchy vegetables and legumes(lentils and beans), etc.




Take away-
It is difficult to take care of how much carbohydrate to eat when to eat and what to eat, so while you are on your workout routine just remember a few things
1. Eat carbohydrate in breakfast, it will give you energy for the whole day.
2. After exercise eats some simple carb like fruit juice.
3. Avoid eating carbohydrates at dinner.
4. Choose healthy carbs like oats, legumes instead of unhealthy carb like white rice, bread, etc.
5. Drink sufficient amount of water. 




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*Disclaimer- This article is written to provide only information and general idea.
This article should not be used, to diagnose or treat any medical condition.
Please consult your healthcare provider before any diagnosis, treatment or medication.

The statistical information given is taken from internet sources.

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