These days, there are a lot of “low-carbohydrate” diet trends out there that involve drastically reducing or even completely eliminating carbs from one’s daily intake. However, for those looking to lose weight, it’s important to realize that not all carbs are evil and they don’t need to be avoided altogether. In fact, there are some good carbs out there that people should be eating more of in order to lose weight and maintain their results. It all starts with understanding the differences between simple and complex carbohydrates.
What Are Simple Carbs?
Simple carbs, in the simplest of terms, refer to carbs that are derived from sugar. In most cases, simple carbs come from sugar that’s added to food—not from naturally occurring sugars (such as those found in fruits). Some of the most common foods that contain lots of simple carbs include:
- sodas and juices
- cookies and sweets
- pastries and pies
- breakfast cereals
- white rice/bread
The problem with simple carbohydrates is that they contain very little fiber and are therefore digested quickly by the body without much nutritional content.
What Are Complex Carbs?
Complex carbohydrates, on the other hand, are the good carbs. They tend to be high in fiber or starch and low in sugar content. As a result, they take longer for the body to digest and thus leave you feeling fuller for longer when you eat them. Some examples of foods with complex carbs include:
- fresh vegetables/fruit
- whole grains (pasta, bread, etc.)
- kidney beans
Benefits of Complex Carbs
So, if you’re going to eat carbs (and you really should to ensure a balanced diet), you should try to make them complex rather than simple. In addition to helping you feel fuller longer, the higher fiber content in complex carbs can also help you avoid those afternoon energy crashes. Not to mention, complex carbs are also thought to help maintain weight loss, reduce one’s risk of developing type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular issues down the road. For those who already have diabetes, eating more complex carbs than simple ones can help manage blood sugar spikes as well.
If you’re looking to make healthier nutritional decisions, you might want to consider giving Altrua HealthShare’s COR: 6 Fitness program a try for yourself. This program will help you set goals, track your progress, and assist you with nutrition planning along the way so you can make sure you’re fueling your body with healthy foods and good carbs. As a result, you’ll be better equipped to achieve your health and fitness goals.