When it comes to carbohydrates, many people can get confused. With the popularity of many no carb or low carb diets, some people may feel that all carbohydrates lead to weight gain. However, according to most dieticians this is not the case.
The problem of course lies in the fact that much of the obesity epidemic can be blamed on certain carbs. White bread, white rice, potatoes, white pasta, pies, cakes, donuts and the like are all examples of the kind of eating that will lead to weight gain, Diabetes, and heart disease.
Because these types of foods are mostly carbohydrates, many people have shunned carbs all together fearing all carbs will lead to these diseases as well as unsightly flab. However, the truth of the matter is that not all carbs are created equal.
Carbohydrates are grouped into two main types: those that are simple and those that are complex. What this means is that some carbs are broken down very quickly by the body (simple carbs) while others take the digestive tract longer (complex).
The simple carbs tend to cause a spike in the blood sugar. The body turns these into glucose quickly which can lead to blood sugar imbalances and raised insulin levels both of which are not great for the body.
However, fructose, or the natural sugar from fruit doesn’t cause the same blood sugar spikes even though it is by nature a simple carbohydrate.
Carbohydrates were then divided in a system known as the glycemic index which tells you how each particular carbohydrate rich food acts once in the body. Foods with a high glycemic index like white processed bread cause a spike, while those low on the index, including for instance oats, take longer to digest and are therefore easier on the blood sugar.
One of the easiest ways to quickly gauge how a food might be rated on this system is by the level of processing that it has undergone. When whole grains are milled and broken down the fiber rich components and mineral rich germs can be removed leaving only a starchy leftover. This increases the food’s glycemic index rating, meaning that it is patently less healthy.
Eating complex carbs that are lower on the glycemic index will benefit your health and will not lead to weight gain in the longer term. Chose from a selection of whole grains, veggies, fruits and lean meats or lean protein for a healthy well balanced diet.
Nutrition & Health Guide
Learn how to shed pounds and lead a healthy and nutritious lifestyle with Astro Nutrition's acclaimed Weight Loss Tips. Get your FREE copy of the Astro Easy Weight Loss eBook by signing up.
Follow AstroNutrition on:
- Snacks in particular can be made in advance as a means of keeping you from overindulging... http://t.co/hT1aHtBb 1 year 22 weeks ago
- For weight loss, primrose oil also has much to offer... http://t.co/WNzsseLl 1 year 22 weeks ago
- For those seeking to maintain lean muscle mass and to build muscle bulk, Glutamine is a perfect supplement... http://t.co/Vfq3wH98 1 year 23 weeks ago