Consuming Dietary Carbohydrates affects Active Women

17th June 2019
There's a lot of debate about the consumption of carbohydrates, especially the so-called "dietary carbs". So, how do dietary carbs affect women who practice sports on a daily basis? What are the active ingredients in dietary carbs?

Women who practice intense physical activity during the day need to incorporate large amounts of energy into their diets. Dietary carbohydrates seem like a great solution when cooking is not a simple alternative. However, it’s wise to know both the advantages and disadvantages that carbohydrates can bring.

Carbohydrates are present in many foods. Along with fats and proteins, they are an essential energy source.

Where can carbohydrates be found? They can be found in sugar, starch, and fiber. Therefore, they can be found in milk, noodles, corn, bread, and beans.

What type of dietary carbohydrates should you consume?

There are two types of dietary carbohydrates: simple and complex. The first is obtained naturally through the consumption of fruits and vegetables.

On the other hand, complex carbohydrates are found in processed products such as bread and various drinks.

In general, complex carbohydrates provide energy but they do not provide vitamins or other essential nutrients. The calories they provide are known as “empty calories” and they’re responsible for weight gain. Cookies, chocolate, and desserts are all absorbed quickly causing the body to demand more glucose.

Slow assimilation dietary carbohydrates, on the other hand, maintain steady glucose levels for several hours. These carbohydrates can be found in vegetables, whole grains, dairy products, fresh fruits and legumes.

Woman drinking milk

Active women and dietary carbohydrates

Carbohydrates are indispensable in a balanced diet. If the body requires energy, it should not be deprived of this important element.

Nowadays it’s common for people to complain about carbohydrates. However, is it really important to reduce your intake of carbohydrates? Did you know that you should consume carbohydrates several times a day?

In general, most people confuse the two types of carbohydrates mentioned above. Those of rapid assimilation can be eliminated altogether or at least, limited to a daily ration. In contrast, slow assimilation carbohydrates should always be your main energy source.

When it comes to daily servings, active women should consume at least one plate of whole-grain pasta or rice, four slices of whole-grain crackers, one or two servings of fruit, and a handful of nuts.

These foods mentioned above will provide the body with the nutritional content it needs to maintain an active lifestyle.

Nutritional needs of active women

Beyond the level of energy required by each activity or profession, women need certain specific nutritional elements. These elements, of course, depend on the woman’s age.

With regards to calories, adult women require around 1,500 to 2,500 calories each day. This amount varies according to physical build and level of activity.

Woman eating cereal

Pregnancy is a stage in which women need to pay special attention to their diets. The consumption of healthy carbs will not only favor a healthy pregnancy, but it will also help alleviate the puerperium period, leading to earlier recovery.

When it comes to taking care of your figure, it’s important to remember that it’s not all about quantity, it’s also about quality. Carbohydrates are indispensable for the body as a whole since they generate and help distribute energy.

Fat begins to appear when there’s an excess of sugars and refined flours, which is the equivalent of saying “complex sugars”.

Even women who lead sedentary lifestyles will not gain weight by consuming carbohydrates from natural sources. On the contrary, healthy carbohydrates will help you feel full of energy whether you are at home, at the office or at school. Keep in mind that women who consume excessive amounts of complex carbohydrates will gain weight regardless of whether they’re active or not.

In conclusion, neither low calorie nor low-carb diets will be a solution when it comes to losing weight. In the latter, there is a reduction of not only sugar but fibers as well, which is a component of carbohydrates that’s important when it comes to weight loss.