Carb counting 101

Q. In one of your Reality Health Check e-letters you said, “The idea of telling a person to eat 60 grams of carbohydrates per meal and then to chase it with insulin is not good medicine.” So what is the maximum amount of daily intake carbs on your New Hamptons Health Miracle?

Also, when looking at carb count on labels, I have been considering anything over 8g as “high” in carbs. Is this a good general guide, or should it be lower?

Dr. Fred:

Good questions! First, maximum amount of daily carb intake really depends on how much weight you want to lose–and how quickly you want it to come off.

In my practice and in my books, I recommend anywhere from 30 to 50 grams per day. Mostly in the form of vegetables. The higher amounts are typically for men who exercise consistently and only have a few pounds they would like to drop. Most women and people who have a significant amount of weight to lose should stick to 30 to 40. And they should all come from vegetables.

But if you are going to incorporate some carbs from other foods, be careful of those labels! Never look at “net carbs.” This is a clever ruse marketing gurus have come up with to make their products appear lower in carbs than they really are. Don’t let them fool you! When looking at labels, always look at total carbs. And don’t consider it “low carb” unless it has less than 4grams per serving.