Let’s break down barriers and renew the reputation for carbohydrates.
First off, let’s clarify what carbohydrates are. Carbohydrates are the fibre, starches, and sugars found in a variety of foods; this includes vegetables and fruits!
YES! That’s right. Vegetables and fruits contain carbohydrates. People tend to get confused about what a carbohydrate actually is and what most people commonly classify as carbohydrates are what is known as a starch, which is only one type of carbohydrate.
The key thing to understand about carbohydrates is about the type of carbohydrate you eat. “The amount of carbohydrate in the diet – high or low – is less important than the type of carbohydrate in the diet” (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/carbohydrates/). It’s quality not quantity, which matters most.
For instance, less refined whole grains such as red rice, rye bread, contains more of the starches which are good for you versus starches from white bread or processed foods, which is more likely to lead to weight gain. Carbohydrates are essential to a person’s daily consumption as it help with functions like providing energy for the body when sugars like glucose found in some vegetables and fruits are converted into energy.
Consuming healthier kinds of carbohydrates, or complex carbohydrates, will also help with digestion due to the fiber it contains and timing the release of sugars into your system. Healthier carbohydrates promotes a steadier release of sugars into the bloodstream and therefore helps you maintain steady energy throughout your day.
It’s also no secret eating healthier carbohydrates will keep you feeling full longer!