Carbs are great for energy, right? Need to carb load before the game, right?

Carbohydrates are one of the more controversial of the macronutrients. You will see heated debates illustrating the benefits of both low carbohydrate diets and high carbohydrate diets. The Standard American Diet (SAD) has become a high carbohydrate diet.

We use carbohydrates for energy. They provide quick energy. Carbohydrates are converted into blood glucose which feeds our brain and red blood cells. Ever notice how irritable you get when hungry? The brain does not operate very well without nourishment.

Remember our previous discussion regarding energy, fats and carbohydrates: the paper and the log? What happens in your body?

Do you have energy throughout the game or do you fatigue as the game progresses? This is a combination of being fit and having energy reserves to fuel the fitness.

What carbohydrates are best for me?

When most of us think carbohydrate we think grains, breads, and sweets. They are not the only choice. Vegetables and fruits contain carbohydrates and roughly 30% of protein converts to carbohydrates.

Remember this simple equation. To your body: CARBOHYDRATE = SUGAR! That’s all you need to know. If we consume lots of carbohydrates we consume lots of sugar. While sugar can be used for energy, excess sugar depletes essential nutrients (such as the B vitamins) and is converted into fat and stored. It has many adverse affects on the body.

The bottom line – it is sugar that makes us fat! For a more complete look at the dangers of excess sugar I recommend this web site: and particularly this page:

Eat these foods for carbohydrates:


· Raw or steamed vegetables, preferably low carbohydrate veggies (leafy greens, broccoli, cauliflower) with two meals per day and snacks

· LIMIT starchy veggies (potatoes, yams, corn, squash, peas) to 3-4 times per week

· Fresh vegetable juices, diluted 50% with water

· V-8 and tomato juice (low sodium)

· SALADS: Raw vegetable salads

Practice balance and moderation of these foods:

GRAINS (Limited quantities ONLY – 1-2 times per day maximum):

· Sprouted grain bread: such as “Ezekiel”

· Whole grain breads/crackers

· Whole grains – brown rice, quinoa, bulgur, millet, wild rice

· Whole grain cereals, pastas – i.e. oatmeal, health store cereals


· Fresh grown fruits

· Fresh fruit juices, diluted 50% with water

· Limit to 25g of fructose per day (see Fructose table below)

SWEETENERS: Not advised at all. But if you must, limit to limited amounts of the following

· Stevia (a natural sweetener)

· Raw Honey

· Pure Maple Syrup

Avoid these foods as best as possible:

Refined/White flour
Refined/White grains
Cookies, cakes, pastries
White sugar, brown sugar, all sweeteners not listed above
Processed refined grain cold and hot cereals
All artificial sweeteners

While it would be ideal not to eat these foods I recognize reality. So, since most people will continue to eat these foods, it is even more important to consume the foods listed as healthy!!

Assessing Fructose Burden
-Fruit Fructose Content
Fruit Serving Grams Fructose
Limes One 0
Lemons One 0.6
Cranberries 1 cup 0.7
Passion Fruit One 0.9
Prune One 1.2
Apricot One 1.3
Guava Two 2.2
Dates (Deglet) One 2.6
Cantaloupe 1/8 2.8
Raspberries 1 cup 3.0
Kiwi One 3.4
Blackberries 1 cup 3.5
Star fruit One 3.6
Cherries 10 3.8
Strawberries 1 cup 3.8
Pineapple 1 Slice 4.3
Boysenberries 1 cup 4.6
Tangerine/Mandarin One 4.8
Nectarine One 5.4
Peach One 5.9
Orange One 6.1
Papaya Half 6.3
Honeydew 1/8 6.7
Banana One 7.1
Blueberries 1 cup 7.4
Date (Medjool) One 7.7
Apple One 9.5
Persimmon One 10.6
Watermelon 1/16 11.3
Pear One 11.8
Raisins ¼ cup 12.3
Grapes (green or red) 1 cup 12.4
Mango Half 16.2
Apricots (dried) 1 cup 16.4
Figs (dried) 1 cup 23.0

Seek to limit daily consumption of fructose to
25 grams per day to avoid fatty degeneration