Consuming carbohydrates and whole grain foods provides the body with energy. Whole grains contain better carbohydrates plus fiber to help fight diabetes and heart disease.
Whole grain foods have layers of bran which contains vitamins, minerals and proteins. Bran supports the digestive and metabolic process and prevents unwanted weight gain. Whole grains also help control blood sugar levels to lower the risk of type II diabetes. Consuming whole grains helps your blood sugar rise at a slower rate providing energy for a longer period of time.
Processed grains have had much of the nutrition and the fiber removed, therefore, they are absorbed faster in the body. Refined grains include, bread, pasta and bakery products made with white flour. Refined rice, tortillas, refined corn products and many cereals are made with processed grains that have been stripped of the germ and bran leaving only a small amount of protein to provide energy to the body.
Carbohydrates are packed with vitamins and minerals to help fight disease and they contain nutrients needed by the body for energy, brain power and a healthy nervous system. Your body needs carbohydrates to function properly. Dietitians recommend that 40-65% of energy for a grown adult should come from carbohydrates. Only 10% of daily carbohydrate intake should come from simple carbohydrates. Carbohydrates and proteins are needed by the body therefore it is important to get a healthy balance of all types of food for good nutrition.
Simple carbohydrates are often called simple sugars and are found in foods made with white flour and table sugar. Cookies, cakes, white bread, pasta and candy are examples of foods made with simple sugars. The other simple sugars come from more nutritious foods such as milk and fruits which should be included in your daily diet.
Healthy carbohydrate foods are whole grain breads, brown rice, cereals, whole grain pasta, beans and potatoes.
Add whole grains and good carbohydrates to your diet by making healthier choices when food shopping. Select bright colored vegetables, carrots, broccoli, tomatoes and leafy green vegetables. Look for whole grains, dry beans, brown rice, couscous and whole wheat pasta. Skimp on the use of candy, cakes, doughnuts and other baked goods and select fresh fruits and berries to tantalize your sweet tooth.
Combining whole grains with good carbohydrates and lowering your use of highly refined foods will help keep you healthy and help prevent diabetes and heart disease.