When you talk to people about low carb eating, most of them usually assume that you do not eat carbs at all. This is not true in most cases. What we do focus on is the complex carbs, however, they are eaten in moderation, and for many that choose to eat this way, at certain times of the day or with a specific meal.
What Are Complex Carbs and How Your Body Uses Them
So what are “complex carbs”? Basically, carbohydrates fall into two categories, simple or complex. At first glance, you may think that simple carbohydrates are better for your body. They are broken down simply and you body does not have to work hard to do so. But it is how they react in your body that becomes the issue.
The Difference Between Complex (Good) and Simple (Bad) Carbohydrates
Complex and simple carbohydrates very differ in how they are absorbed into your body. They are also digested differently.
Think of simple carbohydrates as simple sugars. Simple carbohydrates are broken down quickly, and deliver no nutrition, just energy. Complex carbohydrates deliver lots of nutrients and minerals, as well as energy.
What Are Complex Carbs
Complex carbohydrates have longer molecular chains. So it takes your body a long time to break them down and absorb them. This leads to an even distribution of energy over a longer period of time, and a much longer feeling of fullness.
Simple carbohydrates, like those delivered by refined sugar, enter your bloodstream immediately. They are processed quickly, have little nutritional value, lead to fat storage, short spikes in energy, and ultimately, an energy crash.
Why Your Body Needs Complex Carbohydrates
Complex carbohydrates are important for a few reasons. As mentioned above, they are nutrient and mineral rich. They have all of the vitamins, phytonutrients and healthy, natural goodness your body needs to function properly.
They are usually also very high in dietary fiber. Fiber keeps your digestive system working properly, and helps you regulate a naturally healthy body weight. Complex carbs are energy rich, and deliver that energy consistently over a long period of time.
“Good” carbs promote proper sleep, boosted brain function, and a healthy nervous system. In many cases, they are also low in calories, as opposed to unhealthy simple carbohydrates.
Simply put, complex carbohydrates deliver much-needed benefits that promote inner and outer overall health.
Some Examples of Complex Carbohydrates
The following list includes some healthy complex carbohydrates you definitely need to focus on.
• Brown rice
• Whole grain breads
Simple Carbohydrates to Avoid
Avoid or limit the following simple carbs. Your health and waistline will thank you.
• White carbohydrates – rice, bread, pasta
• White Potatoes – technically a complex carbohydrate, they are treated like simple carbs in your body
• Desserts, pastries
• Artificial syrups
• Candy and cookies
• Soda and energy drinks
If you want to easily make a change in your body and health, focus on complex carbs and get rid of the simple carbs. While not always an easy task, you will feel so much better.
And as always, this will be a work in progress! Getting rid of sugar in our diets is very hard. There are hidden sugars everywhere in our foods. But that is a post for another day!