The majority of your daily energy from food comes from carbohydrates. It is an essential macronutrient, along with fat and protein, that is required in your daily diet to sustain normal biochemical functions. Carbohydrate-containing foods are also a significant source of essential micronutrients, or vitamins and minerals. A low-carbohydrate diet may improve short-term weight-loss efforts, but prolonged deficiency of carbohydrates can lead to a metabolic disorder called ketosis. Additionally, lack of carbohydrates can result in micronutrient deficiency, which increases your risk of bodily fluid imbalance and dehydration.
Carbohydrates Deficiency and Ketones:
Carbohydrates are made from carbon, hydrogen and oxygen plus one single sugar molecule, which can branch out into additional sugar chains. Single and double sugar carbohydrates are referred to as simple sugars, whereas multiple sugar chains create your starchy carbohydrate foods. No matter the form of carbohydrate consumed, it metabolizes down into a single sugar molecule, or glucose, which is used by your body cells as the main energy source. Without regular consumption of carbohydrates you would feel fatigued and irritable and would experience general weakness. Cells that are glucose deficient are forced to use fat as an energy source, which causes the overproduction of ketones, or acids in the blood.
Vitamin and Mineral Loss:
Carbohydrate-containing foods include breads, cereals, rice, pasta, vegetables and fruits. In addition to carbohydrates, these foods also supply B vitamins for healthy nervous system function and vitamins A and C for a healthy immune system. The minerals sodium and potassium, which play an important role in cellular fluid balance, normal nerve transmissions and muscle contraction, are also found in carbohydrate-containing foods. Lack of the essential vitamins and minerals in your daily diet increases your risk of deficiency syndromes related to the nervous system, poor immune function and electrolyte imbalance.
Ketones And Ketoacidosis:
The premise of low-carbohydrate diets is that restricting carbohydrate intake reduces overall consumption of foods and forces your body to burn energy from fat, thus resulting in weight loss. The accumulation of acidic ketones in the bloodstream causes you to lose important electrolyte minerals like sodium and increases the risk of water loss, resulting in dehydration. Ketoacidosis, dangerously high levels of ketones in the blood, may occur gradually and cause symptoms of frequent urination, insatiable thirst, tiredness, skin flushing and confusion. In diabetics, ketoacidosis can be life-threatening. In non-diabetics, high ketones may result in dehydration, low energy and digestive disturbance.