Net carbohydrates

From WikiMD's Wellnesspedia

Net Carbohydrates[edit | edit source]

Net carbohydrates or net carbs provide an assessment of the digestible carbohydrate content in a food item, taking into consideration the fiber content which is generally not absorbed by the body.

Definition and Formula[edit | edit source]

Net carbohydrates is a measure derived from the total amount of carbohydrates present in a food item, with the fiber content excluded. The calculation is straightforward:

Net Carbohydrates = Total Carbohydrates - Fiber

This formula offers a more accurate representation of the carbs that will impact blood sugar levels, given that dietary fiber typically has a minimal effect on blood glucose.

Importance in the Ketogenic Diet[edit | edit source]

Net carbs are a central concept for individuals following a ketogenic diet. In this dietary approach, monitoring and restricting net carb intake is essential for achieving and maintaining a metabolic state called ketosis.

Ketosis and Fat Burning[edit | edit source]

Ketosis is a physiological state in which the body primarily relies on fat stores for energy instead of carbohydrates. When carbohydrate intake is significantly reduced, the liver starts converting fat into ketones, which then serve as an alternative fuel source for the body. Being in ketosis has multiple potential benefits:

  • Weight Loss: Since the body taps into its fat reserves for energy, there is a marked reduction in body fat.
  • Reduced Hunger: With the body no longer predominantly reliant on carbs for energy, hunger pangs and cravings may decrease.
  • Preservation of Muscle Mass: Properly formulated ketogenic diets aim to minimize muscle loss, focusing on burning fat stores instead.

It's worth noting that not all weight loss strategies emphasize the preservation of muscle tissue. Some diets may inadvertently result in more muscle loss than fat reduction.

Hydration and Electrolytes[edit | edit source]

When following a low-carb or ketogenic diet, it's crucial to pay attention to hydration and electrolyte balance. Since the body tends to excrete more water on such diets, there's a risk of dehydration and electrolyte imbalance. To mitigate this:

  • Drink fluids rich in electrolytes, like broths or zero-calorie electrolyte solutions.
  • Avoid relying solely on plain water, as this might dilute electrolytes further.

See Also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

Dieting Diet - Cuisine - Dietitian - Hunger - Leptin - Meal - Nutrition - Obesity : Staple food
Types Ketogenic diet - Low carbohydrate diet - Weight loss diet
  By food ingredients Omnivore - Entomophagy - Pescetarian - Plant-based
Regional diets Western - Mediterranean - Sustainable diets - Low carbon - Planetary
Religious diets Buddhist - Christian - Hindu - Islamic - Jain - Jewish - Rastafari - Sikh
 Vegetarianism and veganism   Dried fruit - Fruitarianism - Meat analogue - Milk substitute - Raw vegan - Tofu - Semi-vegetarianism
Supplement diets Bodybuilding supplements  - Meal replacement - Therapeutic food - Non-solid diets - Liquid diets - Very-low-calorie diet
Misc.topics Food pyramid - Fruits & Veggies – More Matters - Healthy eating pyramid - Latin American Diet Pyramid - French paradox - Mediterranean Diet Pyramid - MyPlate - MyPyramid - Vegetarian Diet Pyramid

External links[edit source]

Nutrition lookup (USDA)


Navigation: Wellness - Encyclopedia - Health topics - Disease Index‏‎ - Drugs - World Directory - Gray's Anatomy - Keto diet - Recipes

Search WikiMD

Ad.Tired of being Overweight? Try W8MD's physician weight loss program.
Semaglutide (Ozempic / Wegovy and Tirzepatide (Mounjaro) available.
Advertise on WikiMD

WikiMD is not a substitute for professional medical advice. See full disclaimer.

Credits:Most images are courtesy of Wikimedia commons, and templates Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY SA or similar.

Contributors: Prab R. Tumpati, MD