Eat your carbohydrates for fuel, and improve your fitness and sports performance. Sugar is a type of carbohydrate found in fruits as fructose, in grains as glucose, in milk as lactose and in cane sugar as sucrose. The sugar content in a food is listed separately on the food label and it is also included in the total carbohydrate of the food. Each gram of carbohydrate, including sugar, has four calories, according to the book "Exercise Physiology, Energy, Nutrition & Human Performance."
Instant oatmeal is typically sweetened with sucrose in addition to the natural glucose in the oats. One packet of fruit and cream oatmeal has around 130 calories with 12 g of sugar and 27 total grams of carbs. If you eat two packets of oatmeal, 83 percent of the calories will come from carbohydrates. If you include one whole, boiled egg and 1 cup of skim milk you will have longer-lasting energy for 295 total calories and 38 total grams of carbohydrates; 52 percent of the calories come from carbs. There is no sugar in the egg though the milk adds 11 g of lactose for a total sugar content of 35 g.
Whole Wheat Bread
Two slices of whole wheat bread has 3 g of sugar and 22 total grams of carbs. If you had plain toast and black coffee for breakfast, you would only consume about 120 calories with 73 percent of your calories from carbs. Make this a more nutritious meal by spreading 1 tbsp. of natural peanut butter over each slice of toast. Include a medium, peeled orange. The peanut butter contributes 1 g of sugar while the orange adds 12 g of sugar. This meal has about 394 calories, 16 g of sugar and 45 total grams of carbs; 46 percent of the calories come from carbohydrates.
Low-fat yogurt has an average of about 110 calories per half cup or 4 oz. serving including 15 g of sugar and 22 total grams of carbohydrates. Eaten alone, 80 percent of the calories in yogurt come from carbs. Pair the yogurt with 1 oz. or ¼ cup of almonds and 1 oz. or one-eighth of a block of whole-milk cheese for a more substantial meal. The almonds and cheese add a negligible amount of sugar and only 6 g of carbs. The total calories come to about 402 calories, 28 percent of which come from carbs.
- "Exercise Physiology, Energy, Nutrition & Human Performance"; William McArdle, Frank Katch and Victor Katch; 2007
- "The NutriBase Complete Book of Food Counts"; NutriBase; 2001