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Thread: Carbs and Exercise page

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    Bosnic's Avatar
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    Carbs and Exercise

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    I'm starting to think that one's carb intake should be somewhat affected by their level of activity. The more active you are, the more lenient you can be on the carbs since they won't be affecting your insulin sensitivity as much. I was thinking about those "raw food vegans", who get all their calories from fruit (sugar). The only one's I've seen that look in shape also work out intensely, mostly long-distance running. I can't imagine an all-sugar diet being beneficial to someone with only moderate exercise.

    While the majority of one's calories should be from healthy fats, the exact proportions of carbs should be somewhat affected by exercise level.

    Thoughts?

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    Yes, definitely. But I don't think carbs themselves were ever the real problem.
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    Keep in mind that Primal is NOT a low carb diet. I think that's the biggest misconception out there. It is lowER carb simply because you are replacing many of those carbs with fat.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bosnic View Post
    I'm starting to think that one's carb intake should be somewhat affected by their level of activity. The more active you are, the more lenient you can be on the carbs since they won't be affecting your insulin sensitivity as much. I was thinking about those "raw food vegans", who get all their calories from fruit (sugar). The only one's I've seen that look in shape also work out intensely, mostly long-distance running. I can't imagine an all-sugar diet being beneficial to someone with only moderate exercise.

    While the majority of one's calories should be from healthy fats, the exact proportions of carbs should be somewhat affected by exercise level.

    Thoughts?
    KGNU-How On Earth, Show: Exercise and Low Carb Diets (with Stephen Phinney)

    Quote Originally Posted by Andtckrtoo View Post
    Keep in mind that Primal is NOT a low carb diet. I think that's the biggest misconception out there. It is lowER carb simply because you are replacing many of those carbs with fat.
    The Paleo Diet Explained - YouTube

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    Owly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grumpy Caveman View Post
    Yes, definitely. But I don't think carbs themselves were ever the real problem.
    +1

    There's no need for a healthy, active person to restrict carbs. There are some circumstances in which carb restriction can be useful, but really, by eating primal foods, you're going to get fewer carbohydrates since you won't be downing piles of sugar and bread.

    Oh, and that's actually what Cordain says in that video js290 posted--25%-40% of diets as carbohydrate, primarily from fruits and vegetables. On a 2000kcal diet, at 25% carb, that's 500kcal from carbs, which works out to about 125g of carbohydrate a day as cited by Cordain as a normal level for a paleo diet.

    And since we're posting YouTube videos, I like Robb Wolf's take:

    Carb Intake with the Paleo Diet with Robb Wolf - YouTube
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    If you are seriously active, then yes, you will need your carbs. The point is to get them from "clean" sources such as fruits like berries, somewhat from nuts, and sweet potatoes. You ditch the grains definitely because of issues like gluten and IBS problems for many folks.

    On the other hand, I've heard of some fairly active people who go on daily walks, get lots of weightlifting in, still doing extremely well on less than 20 grams of carbs a day. I think the carbohydrate levels become more of a concern for people who enjoy running, do lots of activities that raise the heart rate significantly, ect.

    Primal may not be a low-carb diet, but it fits well within the paradigm, so a lot of people have decided to adopt it and have done fairly well on it. Take it for what it's worth, I'm no expert. So, I'd suggest that you simply experiment for yourself and see what works. Try a low-carb phase, see how you feel, then experiment with upping it and seeing again how you feel, ect. Then, you can make the right determination for your body.

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    I would think it doesn't really matter whether you're low or high carb. "grok" didn't eat more carbs or more fat depending on his activity level did he? I think if you eat clean your body will adapt to either fat or carbs. That's just my own made up theory though
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    I can't figure out an appropriate amount of carbs so I try not to worry about it. If I want a banana or sweet potatoe, I'll eat one but I don't go out of my way to eat them. I typically take in 100-130 grams, plus or minus, each day. I haven't had any noticeable struggles with my workouts. I lift and run (no more than 2 miles) 3-4 days a week.

    I would like to add about 10 lbs of muscle, maybe I should make an effort for more carbs?

  9. #9
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    I try to keep my carbs on the lower end of the PB spectrum unless I've had a good workout that day, then I'm a little more lenient. I'm diabetic though, so that just makes more sense to me. Everyone is different. Primal/Paleo is only lower carb b/c you've removed all the fluff and are eating real food instead.
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    Bosnic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drumroll View Post
    If you are seriously active, then yes, you will need your carbs. The point is to get them from "clean" sources such as fruits like berries, somewhat from nuts, and sweet potatoes. You ditch the grains definitely because of issues like gluten and IBS problems for many folks.
    Except white rice! At least, I've found it not to affect me in a negative way, like other grains.

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