I have to vent a little, so please bear with me. I am so sick of all the carb haters!!! Who’s with me here? And it’s not only because I personally love pasta and ice cream, it’s because when you eat the right type of carbohydrates, and in moderation, they’re actually good for you. More than that,eating the right carbs is essential to good health! I know- you’re all loving me a little more right now- and you’re welcome!
Carbs are given a bad rap and it’s not just unfair; it’s wrong. Those diets where you severely limit or cut out carbs are really not helpful long term. For one thing, you’re depriving your body of necessary nutrition, and you’ll suffer for it. For another, you’re messing with your metabolism, so that when you do reintroduce carbs- which you will eventually, because: let’s be realistic- you’ll gain weight back faster than you lost it. Who needs that?
It’s important to know, though, that not all carbs are equal. So if you’re going to eat carbohydrates, you might as well make them count for you. The good carbs are complex carbohydrates, which include whole grains, oats, quinoa, legumes, fresh fruit, vegetables, nuts, and low fat dairy. Try to stay away from white bread, white rice, sugary foods, and processed foods, and those carbs will serve you well. Here are the benefits of eating complex carbohydrates:
1. Prevent overeating:
Complex carbs contain lots of fiber, so you’ll feel full with less and you’ll stay satisfied longer. How’s that for bang for your buck?
2. Keep you regular:
It’s that fiber again. It keeps you from getting constipated, which can make you feel fat and uncomfortable.
3. Give you energy:
Carbs get broken down into glucose, which is what your body uses for energy. If you don’t get enough carbs your body will turn to protein and fat instead, which will leave you tired.
4. Fuel your brain:
Glucose is necessary for good brain function, as well. You’re mind will be sharper when your body breaks down carbs for fuel.
5. Make you happy:
Eating carbs helps your body produce serotonin, a hormone that puts you in a good mood.
6. Promote heart health:
Studies show that people who eat whole grains have been able to lower their total cholesterol.
7. Help you lose weight and maintain a healthy weight:
Because of the fiber you’ll be less prone to overeating, and you’re blood sugar levels will stay steady, which will control your appetite. Also, you’ll be giving your body the right kind of energy, so you can get the most out of your workouts.
Another key thing to remember is portion control; Eating good food will still make you gain weight if you eat too much, so pay attention to portion sizes and overall calorie intake. And of course, treat yourself once in a while with some ice cream or a sticky, gooey dessert!
What are your favorite healthy carbs? How do you enjoy eating them? Share with us on Facebook and Twitter!