What about Carbohydrates? - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 01-17-2017, 03:56 PM
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What about Carbohydrates?

Do vegans count carbohydrates? If so, what is the limit?
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#2 Old 01-17-2017, 06:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by talkcc144 View Post
Do vegans count carbohydrates? If so, what is the limit?

Hi talkcc144,

Different mainstream health organizations make slightly different recommends on carbohydrates.

The Dietary Guidelines for Americans (jointly published by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services) recommend that people obtain 45% to 65% of their calories from carbohydrates: http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-li...t-20045705?p=1

Kaiser Permanente (one of the largest health insurance companies in the United States) recommends vegan diets based on beans, whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, with small amounts of oily foods (nuts, seeds, avocados). These types of vegan diets tend to be low in fat, moderate in protein, and high in carbohydrates: https://share.kaiserpermanente.org/w...et-booklet.pdf

All mainstream health organizations recommend that people consume whole food carbohydrates (legumes, whole grains, fruit, root vegetables), rather than processed carbohydrates.
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Specific recommendations for a healthy diet include: eating more fruit, vegetables, legumes, nuts and grains; cutting down on salt, sugar and fats. It is also advisable to choose unsaturated fats, instead of saturated fats and towards the elimination of trans-fatty acids."
- United Nations' World Health Organization
http://www.who.int/topics/diet/en/
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#3 Old 01-17-2017, 11:56 PM
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I don't know about others but I aim to get the majority of my calories from carbohydrates - mainly in the form of complex carbs or starch rather than simple carbs or sugars.

I use an online food and nutrition diary called CRONO-O-Meter and have set my preferred ratios for Carbs/Fats/Protein to 60/20/20.

That's not a recommendation by the way, it just seemed from what I've read to be a healthy and readily achievable balance.
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#4 Old 01-18-2017, 01:05 AM
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I also eat 60% carbs, 20% fat and 20% protein. I lost 3 stone in a year on that while maintaining the healthy guidelines for women and not going lower in calories than the normal 2000.

Carbs do not make me fat, things like cheeseburgers do. Good thing I never eat them anymore.

Nothing tastes as good as compassion feels
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#5 Old 01-18-2017, 06:38 AM
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Thank You David3
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#6 Old 01-18-2017, 06:49 AM
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Thank You Spudulika and Sidhuriel
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#7 Old 01-18-2017, 12:48 PM
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Personally, I don't count carbs on a vegan diet, it is pretty easy to get enough on a vegan diet, infact it's probably hard not to. No-one is too sure excatly what % of carbs is right either.

So it's probably not something to worry about. However, I can't be certain and it may depend on an individual case.

It's fat not carbs that are more likely to be low on a vegan diet.
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#8 Old 01-18-2017, 05:22 PM
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I certainly don't count carbs on a vegetarian, near-vegan diet. From what I understand, the main problem with carbs is that they can be metabolized very quickly and put a strain on the liver and pancreas, a consequence of which could be metabolic disorder, with weight gain and potentially Type 2 diabetes. This, however, is most likely to be the case with high-glycemic index foods, in which the carbs are highly available and not surrounded by a bunch of fiber. Such foods include table sugar and products containing refined sugar, white rice, potatoes, bread, pasta made from refined wheat, and to a lesser extent bananas and grapes. (There are websites that list the glycemic index of common foods easily found through searching.)

In any event, many of the common, everyday vegan foods have a bunch of carbs, but they're combined with a substantial amount of fiber, and therefore the glycemic index isn't particularly high. I'm thinking of lentil soup, beans, leafy vegetables, nightshade vegetables, etc. The exception is some fruits, like bananas and grapes, and starchy foods, plus of course table sugar and actual sweets, among a few other things.

Anyway, for me, I just don't find myself eating a lot of those high-GI foods, with the exception being white rice, which I have a fondness for (I sometimes eat brown rice, though.) Anyway, though, even when I eat white rice, I usually mix it with something like beans, which adds fiber and, I believe, reduces the GI. Also, I personally don't have much of a sweet tooth, so I don't find myself with the urge to binge on cookies or cake, etc.

Bottom line: I suspect that carbs are not much of an issue for most people on a vegan or near-vegan diet, because even though a lot of carbs are consumed, they're typically in low-GI foods. Still, it wouldn't hurt to ask your doctor about possibly getting your blood sugar checked every year with your annual physical if you're concerned about it, regardless of your diet.
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#9 Old 01-18-2017, 08:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Dilettante View Post
I certainly don't count carbs on a vegetarian, near-vegan diet. From what I understand, the main problem with carbs is that they can be metabolized very quickly and put a strain on the liver and pancreas, a consequence of which could be metabolic disorder, with weight gain and potentially Type 2 diabetes. This, however, is most likely to be the case with high-glycemic index foods, in which the carbs are highly available and not surrounded by a bunch of fiber. Such foods include table sugar and products containing refined sugar, white rice, potatoes, bread, pasta made from refined wheat, and to a lesser extent bananas and grapes. (There are websites that list the glycemic index of common foods easily found through searching.)

In any event, many of the common, everyday vegan foods have a bunch of carbs, but they're combined with a substantial amount of fiber, and therefore the glycemic index isn't particularly high. I'm thinking of lentil soup, beans, leafy vegetables, nightshade vegetables, etc. The exception is some fruits, like bananas and grapes, and starchy foods, plus of course table sugar and actual sweets, among a few other things.

Anyway, for me, I just don't find myself eating a lot of those high-GI foods, with the exception being white rice, which I have a fondness for (I sometimes eat brown rice, though.) Anyway, though, even when I eat white rice, I usually mix it with something like beans, which adds fiber and, I believe, reduces the GI. Also, I personally don't have much of a sweet tooth, so I don't find myself with the urge to binge on cookies or cake, etc.

Bottom line: I suspect that carbs are not much of an issue for most people on a vegan or near-vegan diet, because even though a lot of carbs are consumed, they're typically in low-GI foods. Still, it wouldn't hurt to ask your doctor about possibly getting your blood sugar checked every year with your annual physical if you're concerned about it, regardless of your diet.

Yes. Carbohydrate-rich, fiber-rich whole foods are recommended by the American Diabetes Association for the prevention and management of diabetes. In particular, the American Diabetes Association recommends beans, berries, citrus fruits, sweet potatoes, and whole grains: http://www.diabetes.org/food-and-fit...loc=ff-slabnav
.

_________

Specific recommendations for a healthy diet include: eating more fruit, vegetables, legumes, nuts and grains; cutting down on salt, sugar and fats. It is also advisable to choose unsaturated fats, instead of saturated fats and towards the elimination of trans-fatty acids."
- United Nations' World Health Organization
http://www.who.int/topics/diet/en/
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#10 Old 01-19-2017, 02:05 PM
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I dont count carbs but from numerous evaluations of my daily food intakes I usually get 10-12% of calories from fat, 13-16% from protein, the rest from carbs. So, roughly 70-75%
I maintain a healthy weight with ease, I can run for miles without getting tired, and if I lift weights my muscles grow so these numbers clearly work for me.

When reading the recommendations made by the USDA, keep in mind that theyre task is to support the cattle industry, thats why they advise such high intakes of fat and protein, because you cant eat lots of cheeseburgers and still get 70% of calories from carbs.
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#11 Old 01-20-2017, 08:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Sidhuriel View Post
I also eat 60% carbs, 20% fat and 20% protein.
20% protein is a lot, isn't it?
12 to 15% is what I usually read.
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#12 Old 01-20-2017, 07:21 PM
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Originally Posted by tetramino View Post
20% protein is a lot, isn't it?
12 to 15% is what I usually read.
20% of calories from protein is fine for healthy adults.

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (the world's largest association of Registered Dietitians) states that getting 10% to 35% of calories from protein is acceptable: http://www.eatright.org/resource/fit...nd-muscle-mass .

The U.S. National Institutes of Health makes the same recommendation: 10% to 35% of calories from protein: https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/002467.htm

The American Council on Exercise, which tailors its recommendations towards physically-active individuals, recommends getting 15% to 35% of calories from protein: https://www.acefitness.org/blog/5297...-actually-need

The American Heart Association also echoes the 10% - 35% recommendation. They do point out that high protein diets can be harmful, if the selected protein foods are high in saturated fat: http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Health...62_Article.jsp

Conventional vegan diets (based on legumes, whole grains, vegetables, fruits, and nuts/seeds) pretty much fall within this range of protein intake. The Vegetarian Resource Group's research found that vegans typically obtain 10%-12% of calories from protein (though it's certainly possible to get more than that on a vegan diet): http://www.vrg.org/nutrition/protein.php

The U.S. National Institutes of Health states that Americans typically obtain 12% - 18% of calories from protein: https://newsinhealth.nih.gov/2008/Ma...eatures_01.htm


Although it's commonly believed (especially in our community) that high-end protein diets contribute to osteoporosis, the peer-reviewed nutrition literature shows mixed results - some positive, some negative, some neutral:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/...?dopt=Abstract

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24168918

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/...?dopt=Abstract

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10780863

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12920508

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12356779


*** Important Note: People who are pregnant or nursing should consult a dietitian regarding protein intake.

*** Another Important Note: People with certain medical conditions, such as kidney disease, are advised to consume a lower protein diet: https://www.kidney.org/nutrition/Kid...ase-Stages-1-4
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_________

Specific recommendations for a healthy diet include: eating more fruit, vegetables, legumes, nuts and grains; cutting down on salt, sugar and fats. It is also advisable to choose unsaturated fats, instead of saturated fats and towards the elimination of trans-fatty acids."
- United Nations' World Health Organization
http://www.who.int/topics/diet/en/

Last edited by David3; 01-20-2017 at 08:29 PM.
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#13 Old 01-21-2017, 12:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David3 View Post
20% of calories from protein is fine for healthy adults.
Thanks for explaining. I am quite active and need the protein for muscle maintenance, that's why it's pretty high.

Never actually thought of it as high either, it's just what's naturally in my diet.

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