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Food and Nutrition: Carbohydrates

Food and Nutrition: Carbohydrates

This article is all about Food and Nutrition related to Carbohydrates. It will surely help you in remembering the questions at your fingertips.

Adequate food intake and nutrition management are essential for good health. Smart food and nutrition choices can aid in disease prevention. Eating the right foods can help your body cope with an ongoing illness more effectively. Understanding good nutrition and paying attention to what you can aid in maintaining or improving your health. Carbohydrates, including starches, sugars, and dietary fiber, are the body’s primary energy source. The body converts starches and sugars into the simple sugar glucose used by red blood cells. Glucose is also the primary energy source for the brain and nervous system and a source of energy for muscles and other body cells. 

Carbohydrate process:

Carbohydrates are broken down by your digestive system into glucose, or blood sugar. Glucose is absorbed by your blood volume and used as energy to regenerate your body. 

Blood sugar levels are affected by the level of carbohydrates consumed. Consuming an excessive amount of carbohydrates can cause blood sugar levels to rise. Hyperglycemia (high blood sugar) can lead to increased risk for diabetes. Low blood sugar is a problem for people who do not consume enough carbohydrates (hypoglycemia). 

Carbohydrates can be found in three forms in foods and beverages: starch, sugar, and fibre. On the diet label, the term “carbohydrates” refers to the combination of all three.

Simple and complex carbohydrate:

The chemical nature of food, as well as the rate at which your body digests it, determine whether it is a complex or simple carb. Complex carbohydrates have a lower risk of causing high blood sugar. They also provide your body with the vitamins, minerals, and fibre it requires. (While you may be aware of the term “good carbohydrates,” it may be more accurate to refer to them as “healthy carbohydrates.”) 

Excessive consumption of simple carbohydrates can cause obesity. They can also increase your chances of developing diabetes, heart disease, or having high cholesterol.

Starches:

Carbohydrates derived from starch are complex. Many (but not all) starches fall into this category. They are rich in vitamins and minerals. Complex carbohydrates take a long time for your body to break down. As a result, blood sugar levels stay constant and saturation is maintained for a longer period of time. 

  • Starchy carbohydrates can be found at: 
  • Black beans, peas, lentils, and kidney beans are examples of legumes and vegetables. 
  • Apples, berries, and watermelons are examples of fruits. 
  • Brown rice, oatmeal, and whole wheat bread and pasta are examples of whole-grain products. 
  • Maize, lima beans, peas, and potatoes are examples of vegetables.

Fiber:

Fiber is found in plant-based foods such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grain products. Animal products, such as dairy and meat, are low in fibre. 

Fiber is a type of carbohydrate that is both simple and complex. Fiber cannot be broken down by your body. The majority of it travels through the intestines, stimulating and aiding digestion. Fiber also helps to regulate blood sugar, lower cholesterol, and keep you fuller for longer. 

Adults should consume 25 to 30 grams of fibre per day, according to experts. Most of us only get half that amount.

Foods high in fibre include: 

  • Black beans,  lentils, peas, and pinto beans are examples of legumes and vegetables. 
  • Fruits, particularly those worth eating skins or seeds (apples and peaches) (berries). 
  • Almonds, nuts, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, and sunflower seeds are examples of nuts and seeds. 
  • Brown rice, oatmeal, quinoa, whole grains, and whole wheat bread and pasta are examples of whole grain products. 
  • Corn, lima beans, broccoli, brussels sprouts, and squash are examples of vegetables.

Sugars:

Sugar is a type of simple carbohydrate. Simple carbohydrates are quickly broken down by your body. As a consequence, blood sugars rapidly rise and fall. You may feel a burst of energy after consuming sugary foods, followed by exhaustion. 

Sugar is classified into two types: 

Sugars found in nature, such as milk and fresh fruit. 

Sugar in excess, like that observed in sweets, canned fruit, juice, and soda. Sweets include bakery items, sweets, and ice cream. Canned fruit juice is preferable to other types. It should be noted that sugar-free soda is available. 

All sugar is processed in the same way by your body. Can’t tell the difference among natural and extra sugar. Natural sugary foods, on the other hand, provide vitamins, minerals, and, in some cases, fibre in addition to energy.

Sugar goes well with a variety of words. Sugar may be listed on food labels as: 

  • Agave nectar 
  • Corn syrup or sugar cane syrup? 
  • Dextrose, fructose, or sucrose 
  • Uju. 
  • Molasses. 
  • Sugar. 

Sugar reduction is essential for maintaining a healthy blood sugar level. Furthermore, sugary foods and beverages are frequently high in calories, which can contribute to weight gain. Refined and sugary foods, such as white flour, desserts, sweets, juices, fruit drinks, soda pop, and sugary drinks, should be avoided. According to the American Heart Association, you should: 

  • Most women should limit their added sugar intake to no more than 25g (6 teaspoons or 100 calories) per day
  • Most men should not consume more than 36g (9 teaspoons or 150 calories) of added sugar per day
  • Conclusion
  • Carbohydrates (also known as carbs) are a type of macronutrient found in various foods and beverages. Carbohydrates include sugars, starches, and fibre. 

Fat and protein are two other macronutrients. These macronutrients are essential for your body’s health. You might have thought of carbohydrates as either “good” or “bad.” As with any other food, the key to eating carbohydrates is to make wise choices and limit the ones that aren’t as good for you. Choose nutrient-dense carbs that are high in fibre, vitamins, and minerals. Consume foods with added sugars in moderation. Your healthcare provider can assist you in determining the appropriate carbohydrate intake for your needs.