While on a low carb diet, one question keeps coming up: are there any recommended values for daily consumption of carbohydrates? The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for carbohydrates for children and adults, males and females, is set to 130g, but this is the minimum not the optimal daily intake. Healthy adults need twice that amount on a daily basis. If you know that 45% to 65% of your calories should come from carbohydrates, than based on a 2000 calorie diet, that equates to about 250g. Every diet that recommends carbs consumption lower than the RDA value can be considered to be a low carb diet and since there are many different types of these diets it is difficult to give a precise value and provide a simple answer to that question. But if we divide the diets according to how “low” the carbs are, certain recommendations will appear and it is up to you to decide which diet to choose and follow:
- If you are on a ketogenic diet or also known as LCHF (low carb / high fat) you should stay under 20 grams of carbs per day and you should lose weight very quickly. The Atkins’s low carb diet also restricts the carbs intake to up to 20g. Both these diets cut down the RDA from about 45% to less than 5% carbs.
- If you are on a very low carb diet, you should stay under 50 grams of carbs per day. If you manage to do this, your body would still go into ketosis and you will lose weight very quickly as well.
- If you are on a semi-low carb diet, you should stay under 100 grams of carbs per day. The weight loss will not be as fast as you think, but patiently you’ll reach your goals.
- If you are on a moderate low carb diet, you should stay under 130 grams of carbs per day. Since this is just a little bit below the RDA, you should combine your diet with a physical activity in order to lose weight.
Some people try the reverse way of cutting down the carbs from their diet – they start with higher intake of carbs and gradually reduce it, but most of the low carb diets recommend the opposite. Choose a diet and during the first phase reduce the carbs intake to the lower limits. Once you reach the second phase, most of them will allow you to increase the carbs consumption.
It is a fact that cutting down on carbs can be hard and very difficult and there won’t be a single day when you wouldn’t like to give up, but once you’ve set up a goal give your best to accomplish it. And remember: The lower the carbs are, the greater the weight loss is!!!