Carbs: Not All Are Equal!
Carbohydrates are one of the most misunderstood nutrients of our time!
Unless the only foods you eat are meat, butter, and oil-carbs are impossible to avoid.
That’s right-carbohydrates are in fruits, vegetables, grains, beans, milk, yogurt, and sweet foods such as candy, cookies, cakes, soda, etc.
The fact that carbs are in so many different types of food is precisely why they have such a bad reputation. Carbs in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains are metabolized differently (better) than the carbs in candy, soda, and processed foods made with white flour and added sugar.
Additionally, the “good carbs” carry with them other nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, fiber, and special plant chemicals that protect our health and prevent disease.
So what happens when we buy into the “all carbs are bad” mind-set? First and foremost, we miss out on important nutrients. We also suffer from a lot of side effects such as bad breath, general fatigue, and low energy. This is the result of starving the body of its main source of fuel (carbohydrate) and replacing the fuel with too many sluggish fats and protein. The lack of fiber makes us constipated and cranky!
So how much carbohydrate is enough, and how much is too much?
Recent research suggests that getting about half of our calories from carbohydrates, primarily from plant-based foods rather than processed foods is ideal for health and longevity. So bring on the whole grains, beans, fruits and vegetables. Then add in some healthy fats from foods such as nuts, olive oil, and avocado. Start decreasing your use of added sugars by cutting back or eliminating soda, sports drinks, and other foods with added sugars. If you do eat meat, think of it as a side or a flavor enhancer rather than the main attraction.
Following these simple guidelines throughout the day helps keep hunger at bay and will reduce your cravings for sweets. An added bonus-you will feel better and cut your risk of heart disease, cancer, and diabetes!
Interested in learning all of the details plus guidance on how to follow a whole food anti-inflammatory eating plan? Check out the Anti-Inflammatory Solution!