Carbohydrates are an important part of a healthy diet, carbohydrates, often referred to as “carbs,” are your body's primary energy source, and they're a crucial part of any health diet. Carbs should never be avoided, but it is important to understand that not all carbs are alike.
Carbs are everywhere! Carbohydrates are not just bread, rice or pasta. All of the following foods are examples of carbohydrates bread and cereals, rice and pastas, nuts and seeds, vegetables and fruits, milk and diary, juice and soda, candy and desserts.
Complex Carbs = GoodGood carbs are also referred to as complex carbohydrates. Their chemical structure and fibers require our bodies to work harder to digest, and energy is released over a longer time.
For the most part, good carbs are in their ' Natural' state or very close it (include whole grain breads, cereals and pastas)
E.g bran cereals, fresh fruits, green vegetables, whole grain breads
Why are they good
-high in fiber and nutrients
-Low in glycemic index
-Help you feel full with fewer calories
-Naturally stimulates metabolism
Simple Carbs = BadSimple carbohydrates are smaller molecules of sugar that are digested quickly into our body. The energy stored as glycogen in our cells and if not used immediately gets converted to fat.
Bad carbs are generally "Processed" carb foods that have been stripped of their natural nutrients and fiber to make them more 'consumer friendly'
E.g candy and desserts, sugared cereals, sodas and sugar drinks, refined breads
Why are they Bad
-Low in fiber and nutrients
-High glycemic index
-Empty calories converted to fats
-High blood glucose levels = feel tired
The Glycemic IndexCarbohydrates are all essentially sugars our body converts to glucose (blood sugar) which is stored for energy. The glycemic index measures how much a particular food raises your blood sugar level when you eat it.
High Glycemic Index = Bad CarbsHigh glycemic foods are quickly digested and absorbed. This rapid fluctuation in blood sugar level has often been called a sugar crash, which leaves you feeling tired and hungry faster
Low Glycemic Index = Good CarbsLow glycemic foods are digested and absorbed slower which produces a gradual rise in blood sugar. They have benefits for weight control because they help control appetite and delay hunger.
Below are a few common categories of carbs listed along a G.I scale
Bread/Cereal Pasta/Rice Beverages Vegetables Fruits Snacks
Cornflakes(83) Rice white(58) Cocacola(63) Baked potatoes(85) Grape(46) Popcorn(55)
White bread(71) Rice Brown(55) Orange juice(52) Carrot (16) Banana(54) Peanut(15)
Wheat bread(50) Macaroni(51) Apple juice(41) Tomato(15) Oranges(44) Snickers(40)
Choose healthier carbs!