What are Net Carbs?

stephmc72June 5, 2003

and how do they differ from just regular carbs? I'm trying really hard to watch my carbohydrate intake so I'm paying close attention to labels. I see on some labels it talks about Net carbs, which are usually considerably lower than just your regular carb grams. It looks like they subtract the sugar and fiber from the carb to come up with the net carb.

Can anyone explain what a net carb is, how it's came about, if it's applicable on all foods and if this is the grams I should be figuring??? I'm so confused.

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Net carbs are the ones you are trying to limit. It is the total carbs minus the fiber and other sweetners that do not affect blood sugar levels. If a label does not indicate the net carb count, just take the total carbs and subtract the fiber for a pretty good estimate.

Basically the net carb count came about because although fiber is technically a carbohydrate, it doesn't affect blood sugar levels and in fact it is very good for you. So the health people figured that they could encourage people to eat more fiber if it didn't count against them in a low-carb diet. Pretty clever of them. Then they invented all these artificial sweetners that also do not affect blood sugar levels. Not all foods have these sweetners in them, usually foods made specifically for low-carb diets, so these types of foods are the only ones that list a net carb count.

I hope this helps a bit.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2003 at 7:12PM
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