Sunday, November 19, 2017

Good Carbs vs Bad Carbs

There is a lot people out there who believe that "carbs" are bad.  Most people want to cut out all carbohydrates thinking that's the only way to lose weight.  There are good carbs and bad carbs.  Along with protein and fat, carbohydrates are the three main macro-nutrients that are bodies need. Their primary function is to provide energy for us.  Simple, complex and refined carbohydrates encompass a broad range of sugars, starches and fiber.

Complex carbohydrates are good carbs which we should base our diets on.  Complex carbs are sugar molecules that are strung together in long, complex chains.  The body digests them very slow and generally doesn't produce a spike in blood sugar.
Sources of complex carbs include:
*Oatmeal, Barley
*Brown Rice
*Beans, Lentils
*Sweet Potatoes
*Green Vegetables
These are also a great source vitamins and minerals.

Simple carbohydrates or "simple sugars" are just that, simple.
They are comprised of one or two molecules and the body is able to digest them very quickly.  They are a fast acting source of energy.  Athletes in competition use them for quick burning energy.  If you are sedentary, simple carbs are more likely to spike your blood sugar and cause you to gain weight.
Sources of simple carbs include:  
*Raw sugars
*Corn (high fructose)syrups 
*Baked cakes
*Fruit juice concentrates 
*Energy drinks(Gatorade/Powerade)
Raw fruits are simple sugars, but along with those you are getting a lot of fiber and minerals.
These should be the only types of simple sugars you consume.
For an easy, quick burning energy, try my recipe for Spartan AROO Balls.

Refined Carbohydrates are even more "simple". 
These are foods that the fiber is removed.  These come from whole, natural foods which has been processed to where they no longer resemble their original form. High fructose corn syrup and bleached white flour are common examples.  Most pastas, breads and even fruit juices are refined carbs and contain little to no nutrients.  All of these spike your blood sugar levels and cause you to gain weight.  You should consume "sprouted" whole grain breads, pastas, etc and just eat the whole fruit, fiber and all!

Why you need Complex Carbs:
*Energy: They provide the body with energy immediately, consume early in the day, and they will keep you from being tired and fatigued later in the day.
*Digestion: Since carbs contain fiber, they help aid digestion and keep you "regular".
*Metabolism: Without energetic calories(carbs) your metabolism suffers. Low carbs=slow metabolism=no energy.
*Filling Fiber: Not only does it regulate your digestion, it keeps you full longer. Aim for 25-35 grams of fiber per day.  Whole food sources of carbohydrates have a lot of fiber.
*Brain and Nervous System Function: Complex carbs help to maintain a grounding effect on our bodies, reducing nervousness and anxiety.  Without good carbs we become sad, depressed and it's hard to concentrate.

Eating more of complex carbohydrates will benefit you and you will hopefully suffer less health consequences.

Have a Happy Thanksliving!
  Have a great week. 
Be kind.

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