Essential Nutrients: Carbohydrate

Each gram of carbohydrate provides 4 calories.

Carbohydrate is the preferred source of energy used by the body for many functions, particularly brain activity.  Each gram of carbohydrate provides 4 calories.  So it’s important to eat enough carbohydrate to fuel your body.  
The IOM (Institute of Medicine) recommends that 45% – 65% of your total calories should come from carbohydrate.  Fiber, a type of carbohydrate, is important for lowering blood cholesterol, keeping blood sugar steady, and promoting a healthy digestive tract, and avoiding constipation.  Include these good sources of both carbohydrate and fiber in your diet every day:  whole grains (breads, cereals, pasta), brown rice, quinoa, bulgar, vegetables, fruits, and legumes.