Before you feast on chicken and boycott carbs, take a closer look at the U.S. Food Pyramid.
Carbohydrates are highlighted as an important part of ahealthy diet, and not banned by any means. Your body needs a wide variety of foods to function and stay healthy.
"Carbohydrate is one of the macronutrients that we need, primarily for energy," says Sandra Meyerowitz, MPH, RD, a nutritionist, online nutrition coach, and owner of Nutrition Works in Louisville, Ky.
While fats and protein are also necessary for energy, they're more of a long-term fuel source, while carbohydrates fulfill the body's most immediate energy needs. "It's your body's first source of energy — that's what it likes to use," adds Meyerowitz.