How many carbs should I eat per day to lose weight?” – Liz Pittman


Wow!  Major zingers two weeks in a row!  Last week Monique asked what she should be eating to be able to see her abs.  Check out my answer here.  This week, Liz wants to know how many carbs she should be eating per day to lose weight.  These are literally two of the questions that I get asked the most, so I am not surprised they were some of the most popular questions asked on my page.

First and foremost, I want to point out that I will be giving very general guidelines here. Every person is different and will respond differently to dietary manipulations.  I will also say that I tend to err on the side of lower carb diets.  Most people have crappy insulin sensitivity and don’t handle carbohydrates well.  In addition to that, most people that who struggle to lose body fat, don’t eat enough protein and fat to begin with (and most women who struggle don’t eat enough calories period).


Yes, that’s right.  I said it.  In my experience, most women who struggle to lose body fat don’t eat enough total calories, and especially not enough protein and fat.  For some reason, popular media has brainwashed women into thinking that we can only eat 1200-1400 calories a day if we want to be lean.  BULLSH*T!  Especially if we’re active or carry a sexy amount of muscle mass.


To hell with popular media! This is NOT going to cut it!


What IS a “Carb?”

Carb has become a major buzzword over the last decade or so.  However, it’s important to keep in mind that not all carbs are created equal.  Different types of carbs have very different effects on the body.  Here are the different categories with examples of each:

Fibrous/Leafy Carbs

Examples include: spinach, broccoli, asparagus, chard, cabbage, celery, sugar snap peas, kale, etc.  And although not as fibrous or leafy, I would include vegetables like mushrooms, peppers, onions, squash, cucumbers, or other vegetables where fiber makes up the vast majority of carbs with little or no starches or sugar, in this group as well.  These vegetables don’t elicit an insulin response and can be consumed liberally by anyone looking to lose body fat. A serving of the fibrous/leafy carbs is typically 1 cup while a serving of the other vegetables is typically ½ cup.

Eat these liberally!


Fruit/Sugary Vegetable Carbs:

These tend to be higher in sugar per servings than the carbs mentioned above, and they tend to release small amounts of insulin over time.  They have their place in a fat loss diet, but should be consumed in smaller quantities and always eaten with a protein and fat source.  Examples include: all types of berries, apples, oranges, grapefruit, carrots, beets, cherries, etc.  A serving of these types of carbs is usually ½-¾ cup.


Eat these in smaller quantities and always with protein and fat!


Starchy Carbs:

A serving of these carbs will release moderate amounts of insulin, making them a good choice for consumption during 2-3 hours immediately after a strength training session.  Examples include: rice, oats, all varieties of potato, quinoa, etc. A serving of these carbs is typically around ½ -1 cup cooked.


These are great post workout!


Refined/Sugary/Processed Carbs:

Finally, these carbs release enough insulin to support substantial fat gain if not consumed at the proper times, which would be post-workout, or another specifically timed window like you might find in Kiefer’s Carb Backloading program.  Examples include: cake, candy, doughnuts, cookies, soft drinks, etc.  These foods should be consumed sparingly.


Eat these sparingly, unless it’s a treat or specifically included in your plan.


As you can see, not all carbs are created equal.


Weight or Fat?

So, how many of them should you eat per day to lose weight?  I am going to take a leap of faith here and assume that Liz wants to lose FAT, not just weight.  She could easily lose weight by chopping off her arm, sitting in a sauna for an hour, or taking a huge crap… but that probably wouldn’t help her reach her goal of being leaner, and looking and feeling better.


This might feel awesome, but it’s probably not the type of “weight” you’re looking to lose.


How Many Carbs?

When designing a fat loss program for someone, I always give them a thorough questionnaire so I can customize their nutrition program, in order to increase their chance of success.  Not only should their nutrition program be designed to help them reach their goals, but it should also be something that gives them energy and makes them feel good, and something that they feel like they can do for the long-haul.  I am not a big fan of, 6-weeks-to-a-new-you crash diets.  Heck, I will even decline to work with a client if that’s what they’re looking for.  Of course, they may require a diet that’s a bit more restrictive at certain times, but overall, their nutrition program should be something that they can live with forever.

Two different programs that my clients have had a lot of success with are as follows:

1. Cyclical Ketogenic Diet – This is very much like Kiefer’s Carb Nite Solution, or Dr. Mauro Di Pasquale’s Anabolic Diet with a shorter re-carb window.  Since most people have crummy insulin sensitivity to begin with, not only will a nutrition program like this help them burn body fat, but it will improve their insulin sensitivity.  In the beginning, a client may feel very sluggish or foggy-headed on this type of diet, but once they become ketone-adapted they should actually begin to have a lot more energy than they had before they started the program.

If a client is doing this program, they typically keep their net carbs under ~30 grams a day, while consuming at least 1 gram of protein per lb. of body weight.  I generally like a ratio of about 35-40% protein, 5-10% carbs, 50-55% fat here.  Your calorie level would depend on many factors and would be based on the individual and their needs.  Make sure you are eating plenty of veggies from the fibrous/leafy category above.

After following the above program for at least 7 days (some people may want to follow it for up to 10 days at first), you can begin having weekly re-carb days.  I would start out with less processed foods like fruit and potatoes, and monitor their effects on your body.  Later on down the road you can experiment with more processed foods like ice cream, candy, etc. and monitor what happens.

This usually works very well for clients who prefer to be “on” or “off” a “diet.”  This is for the folks who despise moderation. =)


2. Carb Cycling – Again, like the example given above, this is not exactly a revolutionary nutrition program I invented.  You have seen several variations of it I am sure, and really any nutrition program that includes days of lower carbs and days of higher carbs could be considered “carb cycling.”  I first started experimenting with this on myself in 2007.  I recognized that I did not handle carbs very well, and yet I LOVED eating them.  Since I knew that I had the most “leeway” to go carb-crazy post workout, I decided that that is when I would eat the majority of my carbs.

On my days off from training I would eat mostly protein and fat, with lots of veggies and a little fruit.  On my training days, I would do the same thing during the day, and then I would train in the evening.  Once I was done training, the fun began.  On my upper body lifting days, I usually have between 150-200 grams of carbs, and on my lower body training days I would have 200-300.  Most of this came from sweet potatoes, rice, fruit, granola, cereal, and other similar sources.  (Keep in mind that I weighed 158 lbs., carried quite a bit of muscle, and trained very intensely at this point – most women will not need that many carbs).


Again, your calorie level will vary widely based on many factors, but some very general estimates are as follows:


Non-Training Day:

1 gram of protein/lb. of body weight

.8-1 grams of fat/lb. of body weight

< 30 grams carbs

Training Day:

1.25 grams of protein/lb. of body weight

.5-.6 grams of fat/lb. of body weight

1.25 grams of carbs/lb. of body weight (maybe slightly more or less depending on the intensity of the training session)

When following a carb cycling approach like the one outlined above, I would typically have a “cheat evening” one evening a week, typically after training lower body.

This approach generally works best with people who prefer to be able to have smaller amounts of foods they desire on a more regular basis.  This is NOT good for people who cannot control themselves once they start eating carbs.


The amount of carbs is important, but the type and timing is even more important and makes the difference between success and failure. The body needs a chance to get into full-blown fat burning mode, which eating carbs everyday prevents. So give yourself a chance to succeed by giving your body a chance to burn the fat.


So there you have it Liz!  Hopefully this gives you a good idea of what you should be doing!  I would love to hear your feedback below!

51 Responses to Weekly Reader Question #2: How Many Carbs For Fat Loss?

  1. Shanna L. says:

    What do you consider a “fat” source? Are you referring to fat in general or healthy fats?

    • molly says:

      Hey Shanna!

      Good question! I consider a “fat source” any food whose caloric makeup is comprised of more than 50% fat, or any food that contains more than 8-10 grams of fat per serving. I will admit these are not hard-and-fast guidelines, but just the way I categorize food items in my head (and it makes sense, right?)

      For example, 1oz. of cheddar cheese has ~7 grams of protein and ~9 grams of fat. So it’s a decent source of protein (I said decent, not good ;-D) but it’s calories are comprised of ~25% protein and 75% fat (7×4 = 28 + 9×9 = 81, so 28/109 = ~25%, and 81/109 = ~75%) so I would consider it more of a fat source instead of a protein source. Plus, like I mentioned, it falls into the category of at least 8-10 grams of fat per serving.

      There is a lot of debate about which fat sources are “healthy.” Many people want to crucify animal fats, while others actually say plant fats are not good. The only fats I really try to avoid are man-made, processed, trans-fats like those found in pastries, fried foods, etc.

      Other than that, unless following a specific nutrition regimen, I try to eat fat from a variety of sources including: animal fats, fatty meats, fish oil, avocado, olive oil, macadamia nut oil, real butter, whole fat raw dairy, whole eggs, etc.

      Does this answer your question? I hope so!

  2. marci nevin says:

    Great advice, Molly! I feel that whatever your goal, sticking to protein, fat, and vegetables prior to training works very well. People think Im crazy when I tell them that I dont eat carbs prior to lifting, but I feel so much better physically and mentally taking this approach, and Im able to stay lean despite eating tons of carbs PWO. I hope that many people read this article and start implementing your recommendations, as they would look AND feel better. Carb Nite and CBL, FTW!

    • molly says:

      Marci – Thanks for the comment! I feel much better training without carbs as well! They make me sleepy and sluggish! I do know some people who like 25-30 grams of carbs pre-workout, but I am not generally one of them! =)

  3. Shanna L. says:

    That answers my question perfectly! Thanks!!

  4. Sean says:

    Would someone with a broken metabolism (from chronic low cal/carb dieting) fair better with a carb-cycling approach? Will following that for about a month be enough?

    • molly says:


      You know, it’s hard to say which would be “better” without having worked with you…

      If you have done chronic low cal/low carb diets in the past, it would be my guess that the carb cycling would be of more benefit, but you may also gain a bit more fat in the beginning while you are repairing your metabolism. This isn’t always the case, but it can definitely happen.

      You could always start with the cyclical ketogenic and try to get calories pretty high while keeping carbs low (except for your re-carb day)… then slowly transition into getting a higher % of your calories from carbs (on training days). Does that make sense?

    • Sean says:

      Makes perfect sense, thanks Molly!

  5. Pingback: Carbs and Fat Loss «

  6. MT says:

    Great examples of useless scale weight loss 🙂 I’ve been referring to chopping off a limb a an example as well. Somehow everyone agrees they’re not better off health-wise without an arm, but most people who mindlessly crash diet off 10kg of muscle + water (+ maybe some fat/bloat) genuinely think their overall health has improved. The popular media health folklore needs to die.

    Loved you on Kiefer’s show, I’ve been looking into your stuff ever since 🙂 And without saying – any woman in my life seeking to improve will be directed to your site and GGS on short notice. Thanks!

    • molly says:

      MT – totally agree! It’s amazing how powerful just changing that one word from “weight” to “fat” can be. And it’s so hard to get people to wrap their brains around! =)

      Thanks for the compliment and thank you for supporting GGS!

  7. David says:

    Hi, Molly!

    I’m very glad of discovering your blog!

    When you say about the Cyclical Ketogenic Diet “After following the above program for at least 7 days, you can begin having weekly re-carb days.”… Do you mean only one day of re-carb every week or re-carb more days in a week?

    Best wishes from Barcelona, Spain.

    • molly says:

      David – Good question! I should have been more clear…

      For most people wanting fat loss, 1 re-carb day works well. If you are on the leaner side or you train very intensely, you could try a re-carb day every 4th or 5th day. If you find that fat loss slows, go back to having your re-carb day once a week. =)

      Thanks for reading!

  8. Rachel says:

    Thanks for this great information!
    I’ve seen similar protocols that call for 1g of protein per lb of body weight, etc, however I typically see them use lean body mass instead of total body weight. What are your thoughts on that? Perhaps that’s simply not enough of each macro-nutrient?


    • molly says:


      I have seen people use lean body mass for the calculations as well, but then sometimes they just increase the multiplier so the total amount of each macronutrient is similar to what I have above… so it really doesn’t matter all that much.

      However, in my opinion, 1 gram of protein per lb of lean mass is the absolute minimum someone should eat to maintain their lean mass.

      The only time I may modify the recommendation is if someone is very obese, but even then, they will still need quite a bit of protein to maintain muscle mass while losing body fat.

  9. Alexa says:

    Hi, this is a great and timely article for me – thanks!

    I generally eat v low carb, but can’t maintain it for long. I tend to crash off and eat carbs like crazy for weeks at a time. Because of this ongoing struggle, the idea of a carb loading day is appealing, but I’d always thought going in and out of ketosis was dangerous. Is there any research / experience that you’ve had that can reassure me?

    • molly says:


      Well I can tell you that if going in out and of ketosis was dangerous, I would be dead because I consistently alternate between very low carb diets and consuming carbohydrates and I have for years.

      As for research, whenever someone asks a research question, I like to turn to my own personal research library, Kiefer. =)

      Here is what he had to say:

      “I don’t have any on hand at the moment, but if going into and out of ketosis is dangerous then we should all be dead since every time you exercise, your body goes into ketogenesis, as well as every time you sleep for more 3 hours.

      By back loading with carbs (as in CBL), the whole idea is to only extend the night time ketogenesis into the first half of the day to keep the body burning body fat efficiently. You’re switching into and out of ketosis as many times as you would on any normal day and less so because once you start training, you’re already ketogenic, instead of going non-ketogenic to ketogenic back to non-ketogenic post training.”

      Hopefully that’s helpful! =)

  10. Aleisha says:

    Hi, I really loved this article, but I have a question! I’m 17 with a screwed metabolism. I used to go low cal/low fat and I overtrained….Don’t worry, I’m recovering now. I eat plenty and I upped my fat, but now I’m concerned if I should go low carb or not. I want to lose a little more fat in my belly, but doctors and trainers usually always seem to say that kids and teens should keep healthy carbs high..What do you think? 🙂

    • molly says:

      Hey Aleisha,

      First off, let me say that I am so glad you are back to eating plenty of food and lots of good fats. As for whether kids/teens should eat a “high” carb diet, I would have to disagree. While I would never put my (hypothetical) child on a “low carb” diet, I definitely wouldn’t put them on a “high carb” diet either. I would make sure they got plenty of meat, fats, veggies, fruits, and unprocessed starchy carbs.

      In my opinion, the carb cycling approach would probably work very well for you. Over the course of the week, you would end up with about 25-30% of your calories coming from carbs (even more if you included a “treat” day with lots of carbs), which is on the “lower” end of carb consumption according to mainstream nutrition recommendations (they recommend 50-70% of your calories come from carbs, but that’s also part of what has made us fat and sick) but it’s not exactly “low.”

      Hope this helps!

  11. Lucy says:

    Hey Molly-

    I love your article on carb cycling. I am carb cycling right now but I have read so many different ideas on how even though the general method is the same. I workout/train (cardio & lift) 6 days/week. If I were to do it the way you mentioned, I would be eating high carbs almost everyday with only 1 low carb day, I don’t know if it were be considered carb cycling anymore. That’s why I am so confused 🙁 I know I would be sluggish if I don’t have enough carbs for my workout but it seems like I would be doing carb cycling incorrectly. Help 🙁

    • molly says:


      Are you weight training 6 days a week? If so, in my opinion, you should cut back to 3-4 days a week of weight training. 6 days a week is excessive, and is typically only done by bodybuilders who are doing body part splits (I don’t normally recommend body part splits for women who simply want to look and feel better). If you are training several muscle groups every time you train and you still train 6 days a week — that’s definitely too much in my opinion). If you’re training hard and heavy, like I said, 3-4 days a week is plenty.

      If you’re only lifting a few days a week and doing cardio on the other days (for example, 3 days lifting and 3 days cardio for a total of 6 days) then just keep in mind that you don’t have the carbs on your cardio days. The carb days are only for your weight training days. So you would have carbs 3 days a week and be low carb 4 days a week.

      Hope this is helpful!

  12. David says:

    Good morning, Miss Molly!

    It’s David, again.

    I’m making a customized diet following your advices. I changed my mind and I’m going to try with the Carb-back loading instead the Cyclical Ketogenic Diet. I lift intensely and I want to get ripped too.

    I have a few questions:

    1- Must I eat fats after the work out too? Will not they slow down the absorption of carbs or something?

    2- In the Non-Training Days you recommend eat only 30 grams of carbs after the work out. Must they be vegetables or they can be a potato, a ripe banana or even an ice cream? Should I reserve the sugary meals only for the training days post work out?

    3- What about the issue of avoiding the breakfast (therefore, the protein intake) when you wake up? What about the catabolic effect of your muscles of being 8 hours sleeping without intake protein? Kiefer recommends 12 hours of fasting and the Renegade Diet 16 hours (¡!)… What about the catabolism?

    Thank you so much!!!

    • molly says:


      1. Nope, the meal you eat immediately post workout should have as little fat as possible.

      2. If it’s a non-training day, then you wouldn’t be working out. =)
      And you spread the 30 grams throughout the day and they should come from almost all vegetables.

      3. We are actually finding out that fasting in the morning doesn’t cause the muscle tissue breakdown that we used to believe it caused…. so no worries. =)

  13. Are either of these protocols good for long term? If so , how long is long term? If breaks are necessary, how long should the break be for?

    • molly says:

      Get in Shape Girl,

      I absolutely think the cyclical ketogenic diet is fine for 8-16 weeks at a time and the carb cycling is fine long-term, long-term meaning forever. =)

      If doing the cyclical ketogenic diet, I would take 2-4 weeks breaks every 8-16 weeks based on how you’re looking and feeling. Your “break” could even be the carb cycling program with slightly higher calories.

      That being said, you shouldn’t be in fat loss mode 24/7/365. There are times of the year you should have different goals like pure strength, muscle gain, maintenance, conditioning, etc. It’s too hard on the body to be in a chronic caloric deficit all the time.

      So even if you did adhere to something really similar to the carb cycling program, I would still alternate periods of higher calories with periods of lower calories.

      Hope this is helpful!

  14. Pingback: Inspired Fit Strong – 32 Things Worth Reading

  15. Pingback: Inspired Fit Strong – 37 неща, които си заслужава да прочетете

  16. NickyNicky says:

    Hi and thank you for the great info. Can you give some recommendations on the amount of carbs one would take in on the ketogenic diet for the refeed day? Also, is it less than 30g carbs including fibrous veggies?

    Thanks for your help!

    • molly says:

      Hey Nicky!

      I would start with somewhere between 1 and 1.5 grams of carbs per lb. of body weight. If you look better the next day (tighter, leaner, fuller) you can try increasing the carbs a bit the following week if you want. If you looked smoother, then reduce the carbs slightly OR eat them from less processed sources.

      I personally include fibrous veggies in the 30 grams of carbs. When you’re keeping carbs ultra low, every little bit counts.

      I also count the trace sources in protein and fat because they can add up quickly. For example, cashew butter has ~8 grams of carbs per serving! If you want to do a ketogenic diet correctly, you’re better off counting up every little thing to ensure your success. =) Hope this helps!

    • NickyNicky says:

      GREAT! Thanks for your help!

  17. NickyNicky says:

    Oh! I have one more question: Would trace carbs in protein and fat sources be counted towards the 30g carbs on non-refeed days for the ketogenic diet?

    Thanks again.

  18. Pingback: Derby City CrossFit | Louisville | Workout of the Day – Wednesday 8/22/12

  19. Meg says:


    The contact you have with your readers is phenomenal. This is a post that contains a lot of very helpful information, but it can be used in so many different ways as every one is different. I am so impressed with the effort you put into reaching out to your readers and I have to thank you for that! That is rare with a blogger!

    I also need to thank you for writing this incredible post! I read it the day you’ve posted it and several times since! It’s always in my mind as I am trying to find “what works for me!”

    I am hoping you could help me out a little or give me a few words of advice?

    I like the carb cycling approach as my body NEEDS the carbs on lifting days. I need those carbs when I go into the gym to lift!

    I looked at the estimates you gave for training/non-training days and calculated what my intake would be. For training days, the total amount of calories would be around 1,450. Currently, I am eating about 2,000 calories and maintaining my weight. I don’t need to lose weight, so I was wondering if you could guide me in some way?

    Looking at my current intake, it seems that I am getting 2g of protein/lb. of body weight, .7g of fat/lb. of bw, and my carbs will vary depending which day it is, but I usually have 140g of carbs on training days. What do you think about my protein intake?

    Also, for carbohydrates… do you count carbs in everything? What I took away from your post is that you count carbs in everything except fibrous/leafy carbs?

    Thank you so much for your time Molly, you are such an inspiration! XO


    • molly says:

      Hey Meg!

      Thank you for the kind words!

      Hmm… so according to your calculations, you’re around 100 lbs then, is that correct?

      You mentioned that you don’t need to lose weight (which I can imagine I would agree with), so what is your goal specifically? The guidelines above are just very general recommendations, and they are geared towards fat loss…

      What makes you feel like you *need* carbs on lifting days? Just curious! Some people feel great with them, they actually make me feel like garbage if I eat them before my workout, so I stick with after my workout only, and generally recommend that for fat loss clients as well.

      Again, if your goal is not fat loss, the numbers above don’t really apply =)

      That’s a lot of protein, but I don’t see an issue with it at all.

      I typically count pretty much all carb sources, but that’s just because I am OCD. =) As long as you’re consistent, it doesn’t matter whether you add them in or not. Make sense?

      Hope this helps!

    • Alyssa says:

      Meg asked the same question that I had when I was figuring out the numbers that you presented in this post. I had tried Kiefer’s approach once before, but I don’t think I was eating enough carbs for my activity. Therefore, I stopped. But looking back on it, I think low carb does get me to my fat loss goals. But I don’t want to go super low calorie because I want to maintain my lean muscle mass and also with lower calorie, I just could not recover and perform well after my workouts. Molly, what kind of advice would you give to both Meg and I as far as how we could take your general guidelines and apply them to a higher caloric intake?

    • MissDIbs says:

      HI I am wondering if you could help me plan a nutritional plan that will suit my goals and work outs.

      Please advise


  20. David says:

    Hi, Molly!

    I’m David. I wanted you to know that I’ve been doing the Carb Back Loading for almost a month. I tell you my experience:

    I lost 1,6 pounds. My weight is 152,7 pounds. I weighted 154 pounds before (I don’t know if it’s a good quantity for 25 days… I think I’m losing fat slowly and not gaining muscle…

    I have to say that my workout is based on Crossfit, very intense, but not on heavy lifting.
    My daily intake of nutrients is 35% proteins, 35% carbs and 30% fats.
    I haven’t done cardio in all this time.
    My carbs intake on workout days is around 15 grams by day and around 165 grams after training at the evening, and the most of that 160 comes from high glycemic foods, as ripe bananas, white bread, some piece of pie (as says Kiefer…)… that is to say around 1.25 grams of carbs/lb. of body weight.
    And I have to confess that I drink alcohol on weekends…

    What do you think?

  21. David says:

    Oh, I forgot to say that I train 4-5 days a week.

  22. Pingback: My Homepage

  23. Pingback: Girls Gone Strong 30 Day Nutrition Challenge | Girls Gone Strong

  24. Brittany Adams-Hoffman says:

    Hi Molly! I love reading all of your articles and this one in particular is really helping me to get a well rounded understanding of nutrition. I was curious, on your training days do you count all of your veggies (green included) into your carb count or just starchy carbs and fruits? Thank you so much for taking the time to really explain fitness and nutrition in great detail for women! You really inspire me and whenever I am having a hard training day I love to regain the mental strength by reading your personal experiences and stories! Seriously motivating stuff! So thank you! :]


  25. Sue Wong says:

    Hello. I just started doing less than 30 g carbs per day and 1g/lb body weight protein and high fat. I was using Kiefer’s menus where it seems that fat intake is about 2/3 amount of protein intake. For example, if 150g protein daily then 100g fat. I read on your blog you recommend more fat than protein. So I should go for higher fat then? Also, I’m confused how to incorporate this diet into working out. I weight train 2-3 times/wk. Should I wait to do carb cycling until I lose all the fat I want first and not do weight training since no carbs? If doing carb cycling, is there still a cheat night every 7 days like Kiefer suggests or is it just mini carb nites on the nites I lift? Also, can I do cardio and if so, when? Do you recommend for cardio H.I.I.T. or endurance(like running at same speed for one hr)? I read in Kiefer’s book if you do cardio when you are doing low carbs, your body can actually add new fat cells- he says not to do cardio when following the carb nite diet.

  26. Pingback: Does Your Program Match Your Goal? Part 2 | Molly Galbraith

  27. Emma says:

    Hi Molly,

    I’m just wondering how calories fits into all of this for weight loss (I know it’s not the main topic of this post but I’m curious)?

    If I do the calculations for myself (174lb), then on non-training days I should be eating:

    174g protein
    139-174g fat
    less than 30g carbs

    That works out to be quite a lot of calories and I would imagine it wouldn’t create enough of a calorie deficit for weight loss, would you recommend reducing any of the protein/fat amounts to reduce the calories a bit? Or am I just stuck in the old mindset of having to limit calories to under 1500!

  28. Hannah says:

    Hi Molly,

    Which category does pumpkin fall under?



    • molly says:

      Hi Hannah,

      I’m sure others might answer a slightly different way, but I would include it in the sugary vegetable category. 1/2 cup has about 12 carbs and 2-3 grams of fiber. Hope this helps!

  29. Jennifer says:

    Hi Molly,

    I’ve started a weight training program. I am trying to figure out the best nutrition for me and am interested in the carb cycling and cyclical ketogenic diet. Do you know of any good resources online or any good books that might be good for me to find out more information about the programs and the science behind them? There is just so much on the web that I’ve gotten a little overwhelmed and am not sure what is actually a credible resource?

    Thank you!

  30. Sean says:

    Hello Molly,

    I currently do total body workouts 3 days a week along with cardio same day so 3 days of cardio. And then I typically on my off days do an additional 1 to 2 days of cardio as well so I do 4-5 days of cardio a week for fat loss and maintenance.

    I used to do cardio 5 days a week all the time but it was starting to really get to me, and it almost seemed like I was retaining fat or water or something. I feel better when I cut my cardio to 4-5 days a week. Does that seem ok? My goal is to be more ripped up to a certain degree.

    I have been following the metabolic diet since 2008. I was keeping my carbs to about 45 grams for the longest time but after doing that for awhile it seems like I need more and did some research and hearing from mark sisson of carb levels and now am keeping it to 30-70 grams. I can’t go too high or I will feel like crap. But the 70 grams I still am fine at. Plus I want to keep my carbs still low as well. So I carb deplete 6 days a week and only have one re-feed day a week I can’t handle 2 days of carb refeed from personal experience


    does this look ok maybe?

  31. Rebecca says:

    Stumbled across this pretty late in the game but wanted to get your thoughts on protein intake. I know you recommend 1g/lb of body weight but what if you have an individual who is sitting at 41% body fat, despite being pretty active (CrossFit 3-4 days/week), and I have heard that too much protein can convert into glucose which can turn into stored fat. I’ve also read that you should aim between lean body mass and goal weight. So if I’m 5’5″ and sitting at 175 pounds right now and 41% body fat (so 102# of lean mass) and would like to get down closer to the 150-155 range, and I wanted to go the carb cycling route, would you still recommend 175g of protein on rest days and over 200g on training days (according to your formula above)? I also find myself sensitive to carbs (have a history of PCOS that is managed with a lower-carb diet and exercise) and feel better on higher fat. Would you still recommend following the formula that you have listed here?

    Love all of your content and everything you do!

  32. Cassandra says:


    I am female i am 5’7 i weight 135

    I eat fairly clean and organic

    I am wondering how many carbs i should eat daily?

    thanks 🙂

  33. Stevie says:

    I need to lose 20 pounds before March 5th …..My intake is only 30 to 40 carbs a day as of Yesterday. Is it possible ?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *