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How Low is Low for a Low Carb Diet and Weight Loss?

Published on October 26, 2012,

When we talk about a low carb diet, how low do we actually mean for weight loss? Dean Bocari has devised a series of zones based on the amount of carbs consumed and the likely outcome this will result in. This is from his site Dean’s Daily Dose…

Weight loss tracker (photo credit

I’m glad you asked. Everyone is different, and everyone’s body responds differently depending on composition and the results one is looking to achieve (weight-loss, muscle gain, etc.).How low should you go?

There are “safe zones” as I like to call them, and the key to achieving your goals lies within these zones.

I have created a rough outline of carb consumption safe zones for everyone below. Print it out and post it on your fridge, maybe it will prevent you from reaching for the [insert high-carb food of choice here] next time you’re trying to stick to a diet. Feel free to share it as well.

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CARB CONSUMPTION SAFE ZONES

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DANGER ZONE:  300 (or more grams)

  • Eating this many carbs or more per day for normal individuals tends to lead to obesity and disease

WEIGHT-GAIN ZONE:  150-300

  • You will either gain muscle mass or fat depending upon whether your body requires glycogen (carbs) replenishment…
  • Example A (fat gain): Individual does not exercise. Low activity level
  • Example B (muscle gain):  Individual lifts heavy weights. Very active. Exercises 4 or more days per week.

MAINTENANCE ZONE:  100-150

  • This is the zone I put most of my clients in (and the one I step into about once a week)
  • Manageable for most
  • Allows for your to maintain current body composition
  • Promotes weight-loss and muscle gain (on a clean eating regime’ and quality exercise program)

LEAN ZONE:  50-100

  • This is where you go when you really want to shed the fat
  • Allows you to chip away at or maintain a single digit bf%
  • This zone may be challenging for many at first, however the body will adapt after a few days
  • Ensure you are increasing protein and healthy fat consumption to make up for lost calories and energy due to lower carb consumption.

THE LO-NO ZONE:  50 grams or less

  • This puts your body in ketosis (when you burn fat for energy instead of carbs!)
  • Increased protein and healthy fat consumption is essential to ensure you are getting adequate nutrition

More at:  Carb Consumption Safe Zone

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