Carbohydrates have always been a hot topic.
If you’ve read anything about diet and nutrition, you’ve probably heard that carbs are the devil or the greatest thing ever… Or maybe both.
So what’s the deal with carbohydrates?
Carbohydrates are a crucial part of your nutrition. They give your body sugar which your body uses as energy for daily activity. The foods that contain carbohydrates also have a ton of other micronutrients that keep your body healthy and keep things running smoothly. That is until recently…
Over the past hundred years or so, there’s been a surge in the production of highly processed carbohydrate dense foods. They’re everywhere.
Because they’re delicious. We crave them and food companies know that so they load up products with sugar and sell them at a profit. It’s not a conspiracy, it’s just the way things work. As a result, we’ve got plenty of foods that are very high in carbohydrate and very low in fiber and healthy micronutrients that would normally be there. When you eat these foods, you get a sugar high, a rush of energy, and a crash an hour or two later accompanied by ravenous hunger. So you reach for a sugary treat… And start the whole cycle all over again.
Fortunately, you can make a few simple changes to your carbohydrate habits to start getting healthier and get control of your body weight.
Check these out:
1. Swap processed white breads for unprocessed whole grain breads
White bread is essentially sugar (it actually has one of the highest glycemic indexes you can get). It’s devoid of fiber or micronutrients to slow down that sugar from entering your blood stream. Whole grain breads, on the other hand, digest much more slowly, keep your digestive system healthier, and keep you feeling fuller for longer.
2. Make homemade baked french fries instead of restaurant deep fried fries
The vegetable oils used to deep fry french fries are really tough on your digestive tract. Enjoy the salty starchy treat of french fries without the heavy bloat-y feeling. Slice up some potato wedges at home and and bake them with a drizzle of olive oil or ghee.
3. Put lentils in your rice
Dress up your plain white rice with some lentils. Try a 2:1 ratio. Lentils are a great source of protein, fiber, and healthy micronutrients that can improve the quality of that white rice you’re enjoying with dinner. You can even put them both in your rice cooker at the same time and let it cook. Oh, and while you’re at it, try some different types of rice!
4. Swap sweet desserts for fruit
Instead of cake or cookies for desert, enjoy a piece of fresh fruit. Fruits have more fiber and micronutrients than baked goods.
5. Swap out sugary drinks for infused water
Find plain water boring? No problem. Infuse water with lemon, lime, fresh fruit, or vegetables to get a little more flavour.
These swaps might not make you drop 5 lbs this week but they’ll help you be a little healthier and make your weight-loss journey a bit easier.
So go ahead! Pick one and try it out tonight. I’d love to hear about what you did and if you ever have questions. Just ask me.