Complex Carbs vs Simple Carbs- 6 Surprising Facts!

Carbohydrates are an essential part of a healthy diet, but not all are created equal. So, how do you tell the difference between good carbs and the avoidable ones? Here are some points that we have listed for you to consider.

  • Simple vs. Complex: The most common classification known about carbs is simple and complex carbs categories. Simple carbs refers to the carbs that get absorbed in the system faster as compared to the Complex carbs which take longer for absorption. Simple sugars are composed of easy-to-digest basic sugars that serve as an instant source of energy. While some are naturally occurring sugars present in fruits, milk etc some are processed like table sugar, corn syrup. Complex sugars, on the other hand, are found in whole grains, whole fruits and vegetables, legumes and pulses and contains longer or bigger sugar molecules that aren’t easy to breakdown. This provides a sustained energy release in the body.
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  • Not all simple carbs are bad: it is not necessary that all simple carbs are bad but how much of what you eat is what matters the most. For example, if you get your carbohydrates from whole fruits and vegetables you are also consuming a good source of essential vitamins and minerals that are necessary for growth and function. However, the kind of simple sugars you may get from certain fruits and vegetables is different from the type of simple sugars present in candies, cookies and cakes that are made with refined sugars. The presence of fibre in the fruits and vegetable changes the way the sugar is absorbed and prevents from the sugar hikes. In fact, when used smartly, simple sugars make up for a great post workout option in combination with protein.
  • Why are Complex carbs considered good? Complex carbohydrates are called so because of the complex chain of sugar molecules they form which makes them difficult to digest quickly. This means you get low amount of sugar in you blood released over a period of time. As a result, you don’t feel hungry sooner or face extreme sugar hikes. Foods with complex carbs have more of fibre, vitamins, minerals and are healthy as a whole. It is better to make meals nutrient dense with such healthy carb options.
  • Glycemic index: Classifying sugars into simple and complex carbs are one way of identifying them. However, for those keeping a tab on the blood sugar levels glycemic index serves as another scale to measure the usability of a carb food. The GI of a food is basically something that tells you how much and how likely is it for your blood sugar to rise or not. Foods that have a higher GI are digested quickly and increase the blood sugar levels as compared to the low GI foods.  Therefore, knowing the GI of a particular food helps you make better carb choices especially if you are a diabetic.
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  • Glycemic load: This considers both- the glycemic index as well as the carbohydrate content of a food. To determine the GL you need to multiply the amount of carbs present in a food by its glycemic index and divide by 100. A low GL is ≤10 while medium ranges between 11-19 and 20 or more is considered as high. Although, even is a food item contains carbohydrates that have high GI but the amount of carbs is low then is will not have much effect on the blood sugar. For example, the GI of watermelon is high at 80 but its carbohydrate load is only 5 therefore it is not going to increase the blood sugar drastically.
  • Top 6 carb sources that aid in weight loss: Here are some of the good carbs that can help you trim your waistline and smoothen your stomach:
  • Oats- high in beta glucagon, lower LDL-c, and help keep you satiated for longer.
  • Legumes- Good source of potassium, protein and fibre. They contain plenty of essential vitamins and minerals.
  • Berries- Excellent source of fibre, Vitamin C and other antioxidants that help in promoting heart health and great skin!
  • Potatoes- Yes! You read that right! Potatoes can be great form of carbs when used in the right way. You can use potatoes by cooking them, then refrigerating them and then using them gain. This creates “resistant starch” in the potatoes that makes it healthier.
  • Non-starchy veggies: These include all leafy green veggies, broccolis, peppers, cucumbers, carrots, bitter gourd which are all low in calories and high in nutrient content. They fill you up and keep you satiated for longer.
  • Sweet potatoes: These are delicious counterparts for regular potatoes. They are low in carbohydrates, high in fibre, and also contains vitamin A and a variety of minerals and vitamins.

Add OZIVA Protein & Herbs Shake to Your Diet in combination to your post workout carbs.

If you want a detailed nutrition consultation, drop us a mail at nutrition@oziva.in or call us on 9769298556 and our experts will help you with your fitness goal

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