I have tried to pinpoint just basic points to simplify things, the full links can be found at the end of the post, that i took the excerpts from.
Carbohydrates are the sugars, starches and fibers found in fruits, grains, vegetables and milk products.
What are carbs?
Carbohydrates are 1 of 3 macronutrients (nutrients that form a large part of our diet) found in food. The others are fat and protein.
Hardly any foods contain only 1 nutrient, and most are a combination of carbohydrates, fats and proteins in varying amounts.
There are 3 different types of carbohydrates found in food: sugar, starch and fibre.
The type of sugars that most adults and children in the UK eat too much of are called free sugars.
These are sugars that are added to food or drinks, such as biscuits, chocolate, flavoured yoghurts, breakfast cereals and fizzy drinks.
The sugars in honey, syrups (such as maple, agave and golden syrup), nectars (such as blossom), and unsweetened fruit juices, vegetable juices and smoothies happen naturally, but these still count as free sugars.
Starch is found in foods that come from plants. Starchy foods, such as bread, rice, potatoes and pasta, provide a slow and steady release of energy throughout the day.
Fibre is found in the cell walls of foods that come from plants. Good sources of fibre include fruit and vegetables, whole grain bread, whole wheat pasta, and pulses (beans and lentils).
It does not provide energy directly, but it does feed the friendly bacteria in the digestive system. These bacteria can use the fiber to produce fatty acids that some of our cells can use as energy.
The main purpose of carbohydrates in the diet is to provide energy. Most carbs get broken down or transformed into glucose, which can be used as energy. Carbs can also be turned into fat (stored energy) for later use.
As a general rule, carbohydrates that are in their natural, fiber-rich form are healthy, while those that have been stripped of their fiber are not.
If it’s a whole, single ingredient food, then it’s probably a healthy food for most people, no matter what the carbohydrate content is.
With this in mind, it is possible to categorize most carbs as either “good” or “bad” – but keep in mind that these are just general guidelines.
Things are rarely ever black and white in nutrition.
- Vegetables: All of them. It is best to eat a variety of vegetables every day.
- Whole fruits: Apples, bananas, strawberries, etc.
- Legumes: Lentils, kidney beans, peas, etc.
- Nuts: Almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts, macadamia nuts, peanuts, etc.
- Seeds: Chia seeds, pumpkin seeds.
- Whole grains: Choose grains that are truly whole, as in pure oats, quinoa, brown rice, etc.
- Tubers: Potatoes, sweet potatoes, etc.
People who are trying to restrict carbohydrates need to be careful with the whole grains, legumes, tubers and high-sugar fruit.
- Sugary drinks: Coca cola, Pepsi, Vitaminwater, etc. Sugary drinks are some of the unhealthiest things you can put into your body.
- Fruit juices: Unfortunately, fruit juices may have similar metabolic effects as sugar-sweetened beverages.
- White bread: These are refined carbohydrates that are low in essential nutrients and bad for metabolic health. This applies to most commercially available breads.
- Pastries, cookies and cakes: These tend to be very high in sugar and refined wheat.
- Ice cream: Most types of ice cream are very high in sugar, although there are exceptions.
- Candies and chocolates: If you’re going to eat chocolate, choose quality dark chocolate.
- French fries and potato chips: Whole potatoes are healthy, but french fries and potato chips are not.
These foods may be fine in moderation for some people, but many will do best by avoiding them as much as possible.
I hope I have simplified carbohydrates enough for you to be able to make the correct choices, while looking at bad carb choices!!! images, I couldn’t find one that didn’t eliminate every food that is classed as bad, in my experience some of the foods on the bad list are what i use often for instance jelly, I now use sugar free jelly. Ketchup, mustard and honey were all on the bad list, I use these to flavour my foods in moderation.
I believe that we all need some things in moderation as if we eliminate them all, we will just ended up binging on the so called bad foods, for me personally cutting out bread, pasta and rice was a healthy choice as these tend to cause my IBS to flare up as well as swelling my tummy, but once in awhile I will have a sandwhich or some pasta or rice, but that is my choice and I know the side effects on my body, we all have choices to make and we make them for us alone.
Have a good as a day as you can, chat later xoxoxo