Carbohydrates are a topic popular among bodybuilders. However, it is easy to find conflicting recommendations on the amount of carbohydrates in the diet for bodybuilders. Who’s right? Which diet will allow us to achieve the best results? What exactly happens to our body when we use a low carbohydrate diet?
Lowering the level of carbohydrates in the body leads to a deficiency of glucose in the blood. To maintain the required level of energy, the body burns accumulated fat, using it as an additional source of energy. And that’s fine. But there is a limit that should not be exceeded. When the carbohydrate levels fall below a certain level, the body begins to use proteins stored in the muscles. To avoid this, reduce carbohydrates in a thoughtful way. It is very important to know what carbohydrates and at what stage of training are desirable.
Recommended and effective long-term diets recommend the intake of 200 g carbohydrates per training day and 100-150 g on a day off exercise. It is allowed one day a week in which the carbohydrate dose is increased to 300-400 g.
A common mistake made by many novice bodybuilders is too much reduction in the amount of carbohydrates. Drastic cutting of carbohydrates leads to exhaustion of the body. A diet with a daily intake of carbohydrates at 50 g is extremely dangerous in the long term. Maintaining the daily intake of carbohydrates at the level of 30-50 g in the long run, makes the body burns the protein from muscle mass. This causes a reduction in muscle mass and reduces the energy level in the body. You do not even want to go to workouts.
There is another problem associated with extremely low-carb diets in bodybuilding. After completing such a diet, normal carbohydrate intake leads to excessive growth of body fat.
The principles of a low-carb diet for bodybuilders
- The right carbohydrates at the right time.
- The largest number of carbohydrates with a low glycemic index.
- Food with high fiber content (vegetables, whole grain cereals).
- Before training, about 40% of the daily portion of carbohydrates (with a low glycemic index).
- Immediately after training about 30% of the daily portion of carbohydrates (with a high glycemic index) – glucose, maltodextrin.
- Up to 2 hours after training, 30% of a daily portion of carbohydrates (low glycemic index) – basmati rice, whole grain flour noodles.
Finally, it should be emphasized that there is no universal diet, suitable for everyone. Choosing the right menu and diet should be tailored to your individual needs. The only way to verify your diet is to listen to your own body and closely observe the effects. It takes some time and patience before we learn which diet best suits the specific bodybuilding workout. But once we test them and choose the right one, the achievement of perfectly sculpted muscles will no longer be a problem.