Carbohydrates and Fats have always been the main topics of many weight gain or weight loss methods, and have been blamed as the primary culprit of all Weight or Fat gains that has plagued our country for decades. Most see Carbohydrates, or fats as the "enemy" but in reality they are Fuel and Energy sources for our bodies. As a sports nutritionist It is important to discuss their purpose in order for people to understand what they are used for, and to see how our bodies utilizes carbohydrates and fats during athletic or physical activities and intense exercise programs.
Carbohydrates vs Fats energy conversion
While the body can store both carbohydrates and fat, when it comes to converting these nutrients into energy, carbohydrates are by far the fastest and most efficient form, which is why they’re great for fueling athletic performance.
Fat, on the other hand, is a slower-burning fuel. As duration increases and/or intensity decreases, the utilization of fat as an energy source increases at the cost of speed and intensity.
The body’s fat stores are almost limitless in relation to available carbohydrate stores. This makes fat an attractive fuel choice for endurance exercise like long-distance runs, bike rides and swims. How well your body can use fat during exercise depends on how athletically conditioned you are.
If you’re very active, and looking to optimize your performance, it’s wise to stick with the sports-nutrition strategies that have been consistently backed by research. Carbohydrates are converted into energy by muscles faster and more efficiently than fat, proving why they’ve been the go-to fuel of choice for so many athletes for so long now.If you are a weekend warrior like most however, your body may not require as much fuel sources. It may also respond differently than those who are athletic, or normally active during the week. For this reason, you may want to experiment with different carb-to-fat ratios and see how it impacts your performance and overall health. Whether you’re a recreational or serious athlete, it is always a good choice to consult a dietitian or a nutritionist that can help tailor a nutrition plan to meet your individual needs.
From your Peak Performance Fitness Team