The general consensus around the Paleo world is that the more active you are, the more carbs you need. What about middle-aged men? What about women? What about people who went low-carb to lose weight? Then they get exhausted and their performance completely tanks, but if they add in a potato or two every day, they perk right back up again and feel fine. But on the other hand, there are also plenty of anecdotes about people who eat low-carb and feel just fine in the gym. Quite a few showed a performance decrease.
I have many people ask me if they can follow a low-carb diet and still do significant exercise and training for events—individuals with both type 1 and type 2 diabetes. If carbs are available, your body will use them over fats, especially as your workout gets more intense. Carbs are like using a higher-octane fuel, resulting in more bang for the buck. If you want to exercise intensely and you eat a low-carb diet, you will not be able to perform at your highest level. I do believe that most people who are training overdo the carbs, however, given the limited amount and intensity of training that they do. Low-carb eating and exercise have not been well studied in diabetic individuals, but let me give you an example of its effects in a non-diabetic population during a single session of exercise to exhaustion done at a high intensity. Keep in mind that this study is related to optimal performance at a higher level, not the mild or moderate activity done during an average exercise session like brisk walking for an hour. The study examined the effects of lowering carbohydrate intake for 48 hours and its effect on the time to exhaustion during moderate and heavy exercise. Seven men participated in a randomized order in two diet and exercise regimens each lasting 3 days with a 1-week interval for washout. The researchers found that subjects only had problems with early fatigue during the higher-intensity exercise done in a more glycogen-depleted state, but not during the lower-intensity exercise. They concluded that this finding may be related to an inability of fat oxidation to substitute for muscle glycogen oxidation at high exercise intensities. The glycogen-depleted subjects did have a greater fat use during exercise, but the exercise also felt harder to them i.
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Do you want to gain weight? Low carb tends to lead to weight loss in people with excess weight because it helps them feel full and they end up eating less. Eating low carb, and eating when hungry, can be considered a weight- normalizing lifestyle. Why do people want to gain weight? While some people may just want to add a few extra pounds to a lean frame, others may wish to build muscle and increase their overall size. So, what are the reasons people want to gain weight? Here are a few of the more common ones: 3 Gain more strength Improve sports performance Combat age-related muscle loss Improve self-confidence To possibly improve overall health in those who are very thin.