Nutrition 101: Carbohydrates vs Protein vs Fats

October 14, 2012  |  Getting Fit

While doing some research on nutrition, I learned a couple of stuff which is quite enlightening.

I have collated them and wrote a summary here:

Why carbohydrates are evil …

Carbohydrates, proteins and fats provide energy for the functioning of our body. Our cells use glucose as a primary source of energy. Carbs are the most straightforward energy sources because they break down directly into glucose for absorption. For protein and fats, they do provide energy but have to go through a process called “gluconeogenesis” to convert them into glucose for energy provision. (This process takes up energy too)

Due to carbs breaking down directly into glucose, they cause blood sugar level to increase immediately that will in turn induce insulin to be released to regulate the blood sugar levels. Insulin effectively stops fat breakdown for energy as our cells are tapping into the sugar (insulin places sugar into our cells) for energy instead of our fat reserves. Whatever sugar that is not used up, would be STORED as fats (gasp). Hence this pretty much explains why carbs are *evil* compared to protein or fats. Protein and fats will be broken down to other compounds first hence it will not immediately affect our blood sugar levels.

Recommended carb intake

A recommended effortless weightloss carb range is – 50-100grams a day while a maintenance carb range is 100-150grams a day while eating about 0.7-1 gram per pound of our lean body mass in terms of protein. If we eat less than 100grams of carbs a day, our body goes into Ketosis – burning fat for energy. Need more reading up on Ketosis.


Fats on the other hand, are broken down and stored in various parts of the body waiting to provide energy only when the circulating glucose in the body is used up. Knowing this, in order to get into the fat burning zone, we need to either need to use up existing glucose in our bloodstream or restrict the amount of glucose in it.

For a healthy diet, we are recommended to eat < 40gms of fats a day. We should always be going for good fats like avocado, nuts, oils as opposed to saturated ones like animal fat and cream.

Very interesting information as I can now powerfully make my food and exercise decisions because I know what they are doing to my body. I did learn them from Biology class but they never really made sense till now. Will definitely be studying more about these and sharing my findings here.

Some of my healthy meals that I created this week …


Some readings:……

Yours truly,

About the author

Dionis is a computer engineer by training, business development manager by day and actress by dreams. She loves to chill out with a good book and a mojito. website:

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