Do Indians Really Eat 80% CARBS Diet?

Recently came across a tall claim being made on this forum that Indians eat 80% CARBS meal. Now, as a person who looks more at numbers and science rather than dish out padded opinions, it is not clear to me how 80% CARBS value is arrived at. Which grain has more than 80% carbs to really average out at 80% for entire meal of the day, month, year, year-after-year? Does any grain even have 80% carbs? Since this 80% magic figure was repeated quite often, I thought of clearing the misinformation that's being spread:

Well, IMHO, the only way we can probably achieve 80% carbs diet is eat rice with sugar or glucose water, and eat some vegetables etc. 365 days a year.

IIRC, some NIN document was quoted. Now, to be honest, I haven't gone through NIN document because I really don't care about HIGH CARB LOW FAT NONSENSE that comes out of every such body across the world. More so, because I am a diabetic who has been DRUG FREE for over half a decade now on LCHF diet:.

So, why on earth would I contemplate eating a diet which is causing the epidemic of obesity, diabetes,cvd, chd, cancer across the world, despite walking and despite drugs.

But, while surfing the web, came across this article:

This says that avg Indian Diabetic consumes 64.1% CARBS versus 60% max recommendation (which again is horrendous) and this article also cites NIN for reference.


So same NIN document cited and 64.1% becomes 80% in OPINION of someone here? VooDoo unless we start eating rice in sugar or glucose water. This is the exact misinformation campaign that one needs to be wary about when people PAD up and express OPINIONS.

Diabetes is a disorder of not being able to HANDLE CARBS. It has nothing to do with just sweets and sugars. Since we cannot handle CARBS, scientifically and logically we should not be eating HIGH CARBS.

Do guys with fatty liver booze and cover it up with DRUGS? Ideally, if we believe in the HIGH CARB LOW FAT nonsense being dished out to diabetics, then those with fatty liver disease should booze and take drugs too. Do they?

This is what I started saying in January 2013, after having been on LCHF diet for around 18+ months and drug free, and got insulted and abused by some guys who could never understand the science behind LCHF diet. They still don't.

But, Indian diabetics are switching to LCHF diet and succeeding in reducing drugs drastically and yet achieve far better numbers that they could ever dream to achieve on "NIN Hyderabad" diet with even with Loads of Drugs as side dish. So:

(1) Ignore the padded opinions that Indians are eating 80% carbs. That's a COOKED UP number and a MYTH/LIE if the NDTV article is to be believed because they are also quoting NIN.

(2) Ignore the NOISE that handful few create about LCHF. They don't even understand the basics of LCHF diet. LCHF that we as Indians are following and preaching is as noted on following LINK:

(3) Ignore the useless calorie counting and not even world champion on calorie counting can manage diabetes by doing that. Perpetual starvation through hypo caloric diets have long failed.

(4) BMI is a useless number:

Switching to LCHF diet gets your numbers down without counting calories, without starving on hypo caloric diet (failed concept), no importance to FAILED BMI theory and no hunger pangs rampant on HIGH CARB Diet. A 108 Kg diabetic cannot struggle for 20 months on FAILED Hypo Caloric diet before seeing good sugar control. On LCHF diet, it starts happening even before losing 1 gram body weight. Weight loss comes later, sugar control comes FIRST on LCHF diet.

And, within three months your diabetes drugs also reduce and you can achieve far better control and body finds it's own comfortable weight. 600+ diabetic Indians have succeeded. Next could be YOU!

What we diabetics on LCHF diet aim for is:

PPBS 1 hr - 140 max

PPBS 2 hr - 120 max ( Not the ADA's 180)

FBS ~90

A1C 5.6 or less (Not ADA's 7).

Hit these numbers and diabetes is not going to be progressive disorder for most. Live By ADA numbers and problems will only creep up. Their numbers are designed to favor the HIGH CARB FOOD INDUSTRY which in turn benefits the DRUG Industry. Aftert all, where does the million dollar full page advertisements in ADA's magazine come from? That will answer why ADA talks HIGH CARB LOW FAT. As they say -- MONEY TALKS :)


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29 Replies

  • And, with the claim of Indians eating 80% CARB came the suggestion that Indians should reduce carbs by 50% and add proteins and fats. Now, in light of the NDTV article, which also cited NIN document, if 50% Carb reduction suggestion still holds true and 64% is the actual carbs, this means that Indians should eat 32% CARBS and jack up proteins and fats.

    Shave off 2% more and you are on carbs range of the "moderate" version of Swedish LCHF diet -- 30% CARBS. Not bad ;)

    We 600+ Indian diabetics are following the stricter version of Swedish LCHF -- 20% CARBS :)

  • How you keep it together I admire you Anup. In the face of the nonsense and woo you still keep plugging on.

    Good on you.

    How in the name of whatever god you believe in anyone can say that carbs are not the problem and all thats needed is to eat a 'special' carb (LW) is beyond me.

    That will wind up the aficionados looking for or finding the holy grail. Fair enough, and as now we have to allow for all opinion as valid in the search for the miracle.

    Sorry guys, SHOW ME THE SCIENCE, or I'll show you the highway.

  • Thanks Mike.

    It's just the passion to get even one additional diabetic on good numbers on less and less drugs and take them away from HIGH CARB LOW FAT nonsense that keeps me going on. best part is that I am not alone like I was in Jan 2013. I ain't gonna throw in the towel ever, even if there are 10 against me. I can handle 'em all challenging Opinions with Science of Medical reports :)

    As for LW,

    (1) @shrisamarth can mimic LW numbers by eating beans and he is a vegetarian on LCHF and doesn't eat wheat and rice.

    (2) Arunk Kumar, a professional from drug industry, mimics it by mixing psyllium husk to wheat flour.

    (3) If someone tries hulled barley, it will give similar results as far as getting lower numbers go.

    So, in short, LW is all about digestibility specially in the "boiled and mashed" (slurry??) form that it is recommended. Science of "Mesh Size & Chemical Kinetics" smartly marketed as some CURE that happens in 3 to 4 years.

    In 4 years, each diabetic of 75kg on LW would consume 2X75X365X4 /1000 = 219 kg wheat in "HOPE" of "CURE" that will never happen. Hook in 18 K diabetics on to "HOPE" of "CURE" and LW seller can buy a BMW even if he saves 1% of MSRP :)

    Doesn't Italian pasta from hard durum wheat spike late? That's why you could find few on LW with great PPBS but eABG (from A1C) higher than PPBS.

    As for claims of CARBS not an enemy of diabetics, some are seeking just attention, I guess. GI of whole wheat flour is higher than table sugar I think ;)

  • We really need to fix the problem with Indian diet whether diabetic or not I see more innocent young Indians are falling in trap of diabetes and thyroid like disorders ... medical professionals or government will never come forward to fix the their business is growing :) ...Its urgent call for us as common people ...we really need to ask ourselves whats the root cause of problem and look for solution ...we can not leave this matter on God, government or medical professionals to solve :) :)

    I find many people whom I know are either diabetic or afraid getting diabetic ...and they really dont know whats the way out ...In big cities the problem is more prevalent rather than in villages and small cities

  • Actually, i penned this to counter someone's false statement that Indians are eating 80% CARBS. Indians aren't eating 80% CARBS.

    Experts will push diet from encyclopedia or USDA rehashed. Or will say look at your BMI and reduce it to a set of bones and eat 6 times a day.

    Only way is spread awareness that Experts are taking us for a ride so that drugs sell.

    Diabetes is growing in rural India too.

  • Tradition of sweets with every meal everyday...sone pe villages gur and in cities costlier version of that ...Sugar is indispensable part of everyday Indian diet... Now days people are pampering children with more sweet to make them chubby and look healthy ...what do you think is it only 60% carb along with grains like wheat in north and rice in south?

    No festival is complete without a lot sweet dishes at home...You go to temple or every day puja is incomplete without sweets...only grains solely are not responsible for carbs...its pure sugar which is causing tilt towards 80% :) :)

  • It is not carbs that are responsible for diabetes rural areas,it is change in life style by these peoples. No manual lab our,no walking, no overexercise all the daily functions are being carried by machines.

    Go back to 25-30 years back,there was no little or no transport system.

    See how much,gasoline is being consumed in these days as compared to old days.Hence cause of diabetes is multiple,not a single factor. This much carbs were eaten by our ancestral, but they used to carry out daily works not through the machines,but manually,hence proper digestion of food.

    I know writings will not find favor,because the peoples do not want to go for the root cause of disease,but quack solutions without any efforts.

    We should essentially guide a teenager to adopt a healthy life style and ancient diet so that he or she may not be infected with the deadly disease in future and not repeating same again and again without any validation.

  • rice is consumed by more than 50% of indian population. people who have been used to eating rice for years together (like me) will find it difficult to change from rice to another grain. I am finding it very difficult to put off rice because rice satisfies our tummies more than anyother food (correct me if I am wrong). Though we know it is carbohydrate rich diet, we cannot opt out of rice consumption. So it brings us back to the basic question, what is an alternative to rice (or even high carb diet). LCHF diet in the forum has many alternatives, but practically when we are dependent on our wives for our breakfast, lunch and dinner, we have a much limited choice to eat..

    In the article from NDTV : """ The Indian diabetes population exceeds the recommended consumption of carbohydrates in their diet. "The study highlights the fact that carbohydrates are consumed widely across India and not only in south of India. This is contrary to the myth that people in the southern part of the country consume higher carbohydrates in their meals. Even if diabetics know that they have diabetes and need to follow certain diet patterns, they do not necessarily adhere to it," according to Dr Shashank Joshi. """

    Anup ji : is this not correct ?

  • Yes too much carbs is the problem.

    Dr Shashank Joshi's (or any diabetologist) perception of diet "PATTERN" is -- Eat every two hours till you sleep. That's what "pattern" is all about. Pattern and "Content" are not synonyms of each other, IMHO

    North South East West, nothing works better than LCHF diet -- CUT the CARBS forget the "perception" of tummy being filled with only rice and wheat. It's all in the mid till you are devouring them.

    I have dropped both rice and wheat since last 20 days and I can see the difference it makes even on LCHF diet. And, I am not starving :)

  • 80% carbs?

    Can you please show and example meal with 80% CARBS?

  • The blogger in his post ,has , either wrongly understood or deliberately mis interpreted for whatever reasons. The correct understanding /position is as follows.

    The book (second edition 2011) from National Institute of Nutrition Hyderabad (a book any one can download free) amongst various other information has recororded

    " ....The other complex carbohydrates which are resistant to digestion in the human digestive tract are

    cellulose in vegetables and whole grains, and gums and pectins in vegetables, fruits and cereals, which constitute the dietary fibre component.

    In India, 70-80% of total dietary calories are derived from carbohydrates present in plant foods ......"In other words, the balance 20%/30% of dietary calories comes from non plant sources.

    If one is advised by the doctor to limit his calorie intake to 2400kcl and if 60% of this is carbohydrate portion of the meal, it works to 1440 kcl.of carbohydrate balance from protein and fat of the meal(960kcl)

    And 70 to 80 % of this (1440 kcl) carbohydrate ie.,1000/1152kcl.comes from plant sources .balance 288/400 kcl from non plant source. Thus non plant origin of meal is any where 1248/1360.

    I cannot help but remark that this post has no value as it is probably meant to parrot t what is being trumpeted in so many replies on his pet dietary procedure.

  • I don't misunderstand/misinterpret. No not even "probably" because not seeking attention like some guys desperately are for over three years by talking rubbish when it comes to LCHF.

    Let the guy who "parroted" 80% CARBS many times respond. No need to "parrot" on his behalf. Using the word "parroted" as picked it up from your reply so offering the same respect to you that you offered to me while replying.

    Plant versus non plant is not the discussion here. So, please get your bearings right in the first place. Were is the 80% CARBS? (CARBS and not PLANTS). So don't veer in different direction like some who "parrot" 80% carbs theory do when they have no clue. If Plant and Carbs mean same to some guys, no wonder they can't understand LCHF and "parrot" a lot of nonsense against it.

    Months back even @agrahar had asked how 80% carbs theory is possible and that time some water content and calculating on dry weight "parroting" had come. Now the plants. :)

    Good try. But does't explain where 's the 80% CARBS that someone keeps parroting, unless of course if PLANTS= CARBS for some guys then it's fine. No wonder they can't understand LCHF and "parrot" LCHF means EAT MEAT AND FAT. And, surprisingly they do this despite knowing there are many VEGETARIANS on LCHF diet. Shows the INTENT.


  • No one need carefor your views what is obviously a post based on misinterpreted/and misunderstood view.posted for public view by all. I haveevery right to reply and clarify the correct position as much as you have been doing here.You should have kept your view private for your followers through your site instead of coming to a public forum for all.. .

    When you can answer and air uncalled for views and advice even on questions not directed to you , you should expect the same from othjers. There are no two separate yardicks one for you and another for others. you had the audacity to post even without going through what NIN had recorded.and now upset about the expose

  • "No oneneedcare what is obviously afollowersharatef view.keep your views for your followers.When you can answer even on questions not directed to you ,you should expert the same fromotjers.There are no two separate yes sticks for you and others."

    Nothing made sense. Veering into difference direction?

    Satvic diet isn't working if i were to base my conclusion on what is quoted from yr reply. Calm down and take it easy. It's just a discussion.

    BTW, ignoring you on this thread till you behave in a sober manner. I am not going to give the chance to play "report to admin" games in the hope of getting me banned. That trick is not going to work.


  • Good you calmed down and corrected your post.

    It would have been an "expose'" If I had not mentioned that I did not go through the NIN document. I am Honest too. So why should I be upset about anything.

    Language of few reflects who gets upset and starts talking nonsense like LCHF means EAT FAT EAT MEAT and starts using terms like "stray dot coms" etc. instead of talking "Science Of Medical reports" :)

    Uncalled for? In whose opinion? 3 or 4? Irrelevant number. For them any reply that doesn't fit their liking is irrelevant. Never do they discuss "Science Of Medical reports". Do they? I guess even recently some guys have talked negatively about such rants against LCHF coming from just one or two people.

    I don't think I am taking orders from you, nor you are the admin here to dictate terms what I need to do. At least I am not abusing or insulting by talking of someone handicap. 70 and 80 year old guys who cannot even respect ladies because of personal hate against LCHF shouldn't be preaching out here.

    Discussion is not about my site. So, please stick to topic. That's doing what it has to do without asking people to give money to charity, like someone set as a precondition of getting contact details y'day. ;)

    So where's the 80% CARBS (not Plant)? Still the question remains unanswered. Answer that instead of playing these games. Till you do that, I would prefer to ignore your irrelevant comments as it is just a repeat attempt of 2013. It won't work.

    Let's discuss "Science Of Medical Reports" of guys on LCHF for once. Long overdue and no one from non LCHF side is willing to take the challenge. Why? :)

    BTW,go through the following link also and then try and defend the 80% CARBS theory. Only 40% are vegetarians. Which means someone must be consuming more than100% carbs (oops Plants in your opinion) to reach that 80% average mark. :)

    I love talking NUMBERS and not debate on some lop sided opinions with no scientific legs.


  • Watch out for boobie traps. One will instigate by throwing filth and three or four will report to admin. Ignore is the key! Some are here just for self-seeking and not helping.

  • I am aware and not giving them a chance. They won't get what they are looking for.

  • ""stray dot coms"

    He is himself in that category.

  • Hey Rao:

    "And 70 to 80 % of this (1440 kcl) carbohydrate ie.,1000/1152kcl.comes from plant sources .balance 288/400 kcl from non plant source. Thus non plant origin of meal is any where 1248/1360."

    Can you give some calculation about 20% carbs (ie ~400kcal ie 100 grams carbs) from non-plant source? How exactly. Don't quote NIN document since you are "trumpeting" it you must have gone thru it. Specifics please and not keyboard wars. Remember 100 grams carbs/day from non-plant (ie ANIMAL) source is the number that I am looking at.

    "I cannot help but remark that this post has no value as it is probably meant to parrot t what is being trumpeted in so many replies on his pet dietary procedure."

    Well three or four guys guys keep trumpeting (or should I say photocopying/xeroxing) ADA/AMA/Mayo pamphlets here and when one does it the other two or three cheer it "blindly" with I agree with xxx one liners. Photocopying also includes copy-paste. As to what value such posts hold, I won't pass a judgment (cf below). I am not even talking about trumpeting of rodent studies ;)

    Your opinion about others post : Try and keep it to yourself next time, as passing judgement about others is not allowed by rule here. I am not hitting the "report to admin" button this time as I wanted to give you a friendly nudge on this. If you repeat, I surely will.

    Also, no one is dying here for a Certificate from you here (except MAYBE three or four who keep cheering each other with one liners to make the post popular quickly) so no point wasting effort in passing judgment about others (outside that circle of three or four).

  • Number of Followers on profile is the best certificate. Obama, Modi et al all brag about their number of twitter and Facebook followers. So, that's the benchmark -- Followers -- in virtual world :)

    If something is working, I will keep trumpeting it.

    If someone feels jealous about it, not my problem.

  • Dear rao,

    Anyone doubting the national institute can

    Count the carbs themselves.

    Good luck.

  • So won't explain now with the dry weight/wet weight theory was used when @agrahar asked same question around 3 months back when the same 80% CARBS comment was made?

    And now CARBS=PLANTS :)

    Issue is CARBS =/= Plants.

    And, if 40% are Vegetarian in India how does 80% CARBS (not PLANT) theory still hold?

  • dear rao,

    it is not much difficult to count.

    generally they take

    = the average south indian meal=

    one litre of rice

    =two bags -size of the 500 ml pouch of milk.two servings [north indian meal also similar]

    plus an equal size of vegetable boild , taking all curries totgether.

    one litre cooked rice=4 international cups=180grams carbs

    plus the 40 grams carbs as mentioned above in vegetables

    total 220 grams giving 900 calories.

    in a standard 1800 calories meal this itself is 50 percent,

    the curds

    plus the banana the, papad ,sammbar , the dal all the rest can easily make the carbs  80 percent.

    only the dal and curds contain a bit of protein.

    fats are never added directly.[except occasionally in an upper class lunch ,ie, ghee.]little bit through coconut, ground nut never used. it is from south America you know.

    two years back they were telling in lchf there is no carbohydrate counting needed,

    probably they close the tap to see no water rising in the bucket.

    rest of oil  is only hidden [while cooking]

    proteins are also  hidden.

     i was a bit luxurious giving 10 each for fat and protein in my articcle about months ago,.

    the national institute is correct because they are people with  real phds in nutrition unlike our forum 'phds with out bsc'.

    by the way i am not reading any of those replies.

    this is for your rough understanding.

    lchf has no definition beyond a hidden political agenda of of abusive remarks on  ada aha pha and so on..

    tell me which institute? which scientist of distinction has defined it except people who refused to learn carbohydrate counting--

    inviting every young man to atherosclerosis ,colon cancer and obesity.

    do you know why i defined LCCF?

    dont take my calculation, i am broadly aproximate , go by the NIN

    good luck

  • LCHF : Leave it to guys who are practicing/preachingit or before discussing it, please understand what it is. Yes, ADA recommendations are horrible. Let's discuss "Science Of Medical Reports" please instead of lopsided opinions. Science is not about "Consensus". Real science is challenging the Consensus through DATA and not OPINIONS. Took the consensus 3 decades to realize dietary cholesterol limit is useless. So why were they (consensus) fooling for 35 years? It's when they have been repeatedly challenged with DATA that they bowed down :)

    Brilliant attempt at showing 1000 ml milk consumption and then curds etc to somehow hit 100 grams carbs from non plant source.

    Let the number crunching begin:


    (1) India's per capita "milk" consumption stands at less than 69kg/year or 187grams/day

    (2) India's per capita milk availability is at 290 gms/day just above world avg of 285gm. So, I am presuming (have no source to verify) that 290-187 must be going for dairy "products" industry.

    If, milk consumption per capital stands at 187 gm/day and if everyone in south (per your numbers) is consuming 1000 ml milk + curd, does it mean that 85% of India is starved for milk?

    Now, presuming that all milk is sucked up by few states in South (the only way to justify 1000 ml milk each and then few rounds of curds daily)

    100 gm milk is 4.68 gm carbs so 1000 gm milk is 47 gm carbs.

    100 gm curd is 7 gms carb.

    Banana etc is not NON PLANT Source of CARBS. 

    So, the moot question remains unanswered:


    (1) What is the source of 100 grams NON PLANT SOURCE of CARBS?? 

    (2) How is the Indian Meal 80% CARBS (not 80% Plants. There's a diff between the two).

    You and ragivrao can try and solve this mystery and let everyone know through verifiable numbers that also add up in national context. :)

    Pl NOTE:


    (1)  The milk availability per capita data source is newer than NIN publications. So lot of OPTIMISM is already built into it wrt per capita figures. 

    (2) Per capita consumption figures is older than NIN's data publication date, so there could be few points error.

    (3) Your comment:

    "inviting every young man to atherosclerosis ,colon cancer and obesity."

    We believe in SCIENTIFIC PROOF and not distorted OPINIONS:

  • Don't give such tough number and data loaded problems to solve.

    You will never get any answers and if you do it will be more of a history essay than a science discourse. ;)

  • dear rao,

    there was a simple error in my reply.

     the 1800 calories are to be divided by  3[ or 5 considering  snacks]  to get the calories per meal.

    taking 4 as an agreed dividing factor, then  per meal you can take only450 calories

    the rice served far exceeds this .

     the NIN is right.

    good luck

  • I am waiting for a reply from you or rao about 20% CARBS from non plant source. The two pouch of 500 ml milk doesn't add up based on Indian's per capita milk data figures.

  • I would agree with indiacratus on the carbs of around 80%. 

    That's the precise reasons we are suffering from diabetes 

    We also have switched from full grain to polished ones and also eliminated fats. So it's refined grains and also sugar content increase everywhere. 

    hence the increase in diabetes. 

    With this disease or disorder LCHF works well with no durgs or minimal drugs. 

    If you don't accept this then don't. 

    We don't peddle any remedies or sell anything except propogate the success we have seen with lab numbers. 

    The combined knowledge of LCHF followers are 1000 times better than main stream ones. 

    Many cannot even reply why Marie biscuits are recommended by the drs and dieticians which has 78% carbs and 22% sugars 

    I work for pharma company and am happy to share that 2 of my colleagues are shifting towards lower carbs and higher fats and 3 more impressed with my HBA1C coming down to 5.2 with normal lipid parameters And normal LFT and renal functions. 

    My colleagues who laughed at me are now wanting to follow my diet. 

  • Ignore them. Best solution.

    Three or four of them can keep patting each other. No one else listens to their advise which is just copy paste. That's the reason why they get upset so easily.