Are Carbs Bad? The Truth Behind Carbohydrates
The ambiguous “carbs” has always carried a connotation of unnecessary indulgence. For whatever reason, gluttonous white breads/pastas and discipline-breaking desserts have moved to the forefront of how many people see carbohydrates. It is most likely because they often are the easiest and taste the best, but their unhealthy nature should make them a natural second option. There are the clear “bad” carbs, but an ever-growing selection of “good” carbohydrates are becoming more readily available and more popular with phenomena like the Atkins diet.
These little devils are also known as “simple” carbohydrates. They show up in everyone’s guilty pleasures. Ranging from soda and candy to toast and cakes, these carbohydrates are sugar-dense and provide little nutritional value. The primary alternate to sugar (in carbs) is fiber. Increasing fiber allows the body to process sugars and maintain steady digestion. Bad carbs lean heavily on the sugar side and are a major reason people tend to feel sluggish. It is perfectly acceptable to indulge every once in a while, as long as the standard routine favors other options.
A hidden kingdom in carbohydrates is the complex side. These are the carbs that take your body more time to break down and release sugar at a manageable rate. A lower glycemic load refers to this beneficial nature of the good side of the spectrum. When the body is consistently releasing sugars, as opposed to dumping in large amounts, energy levels are more consistent and the feeling of sluggishness stays away.
The glycemic load is an easily accessible measurement that provides the interested information about a food’s direct impact on blood sugar levels. Typical whole grains, fruits, and vegetables tend to sit lower on this scale. The positive result is more consistent energy levels throughout the day.
Maintaining a steady diet is one of the key factors in weight loss and overall health. There is a misconception in general media that all carbs are bad, but that is simply not the case. A major example of this is fad diets like the Atkins diet. It is a low-carb diet which places an emphasis on cutting them out completely as opposed to a focus on complex carbohydrates. Unsurprisingly, results have often been inconsistent and have little tie to true weight loss. Simple carbohydrates have no real place within a diet, but the complex can provide a major lift in sustained energy levels throughout the day.