MYTH #1: All carbohydrates are created equal.
Simple carbohydrates or simple sugars include:
- table sugar (sucrose), which is plentiful in soda and candy
- fructose and lactose, which are found in healthier foods such as fruit and milk ,which supply other nutrients
Foods made from table sugar should be limited.
Complex carbohydrates, "starches":
- are found in foods like bread, legumes, rice, pasta, fruits and vegetables such as potatoes.
- take longer to digest and can help you feel more satisfied.
- contain more nutrients than simple carbs.
Some complex carbs are healthier than others.
- Whole grain versions of complex carbs include oatmeal, bulgur, brown rice, quinoa, spelt, foods made with whole wheat. Opt for whole grains as often as possible.
- Refined grains such as white flour and regular rice are processed, which removes the outer layer of the grain, along with fiber, vitamins and minerals.
MYTH #2 Carbohydrates are the main cause of weight gain.
Consuming too many calories-regardless of whether they come from carbs, protein, fat, or anything else- is the main cause of weight gain.
MYTH #3 Carbs are empty calories. (no and yes)
- Complex carbs contain naturally occurring nutrients, like fiber, vitamins, minerals, and iron.
- Simple carbs with added table sugars, such as soda, add calories and very few nutrients or physical satisfaction.
The Mometum plan recommends:
- Choose filling foods
- Include whole grains, fruits and vegetables and limit sugars.
MYTH #4 Carbs eaten after 7 p.m. turn to sugar.
Regardless of the time of day, all carbs turn into glucose, which is blood sugar. It is then a form of energy, which is used to perform essential functions in the body
MYTH#5 You need to eat more protein than carbs before exercising.
For regular exercise a relatively high carb, moderate protein, low-fat meal is best.
The bottom line is we need healthy carbs in our diet! Choose wisely.
You can find out more at the Weight Watcher Science Center.