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What is Carbohydrate? Benefits and Harms of Carbs

Carbohydrates, which provide both physical and mental energy to the person, are known as the most abundant basic organic substance in nature. On the other hand, like many people, you may have encountered some negative evaluations about carbohydrate consumption before. You may even be familiar with the notoriety of carbohydrates at the point of weight gain.

Carbohydrates’ bad reputation comes mostly from the negative effects that come with taking them in their processed form. Carbohydrate, which has many benefits when consumed in moderation and in its beneficial forms, is actually one of the critical points of an ideal diet. For this, you should know that you need to know him well enough. The answer to many of your questions, such as what are carbohydrates, what are beneficial and harmful carbohydrates, continues on the page.

What is Carbohydrate? Benefits and Harms of Carbs

What is Carbohydrate?

Carbohydrate is the general name of basic nutrients consisting of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen atoms. These nutrients, along with proteins and fats, are among the three main elements that give the body energy. Although there has been a recent opposition to the consumption of carbohydrates, in fact, these nutrients must be present in a balanced diet. The critical point here is to get carbohydrates from the right foods!

What Does Carbohydrate Do?

The main function of carbohydrates is known as providing energy to the body. In fact, the body can obtain energy from foods containing protein and fat. However, in the case of carbohydrate intake, these substances are used as the main energy source. In popular diets that do not contain carbohydrates, which have become widespread in recent years, the body tends to use fats and proteins to provide itself with energy.

Proteins are vital in maintaining many functions in the body, such as building and repairing tissues. For this reason, the human body uses carbohydrates, not proteins, to provide energy, which is another basic requirement. Carbohydrates, on the other hand, turn into glucose and pass from the bloodstream to the body cells thanks to the hormone insulin. So every single cell in a person’s body chooses to use glucose as an energy source to function properly.

What Are the Types of Carbohydrates?


Starches
Candies
Fibers
There are three types of carbohydrates: starches (complex carbohydrates), sugars (simple carbohydrates) and fibers. Simple carbohydrates have one or two sugar molecules, while complex carbohydrates also take longer to digest because they have longer and more complex sugar chains.

Both simple and complex carbohydrates are broken down during digestion and mixed with the bloodstream, where they turn into glucose, also known as blood sugar. Thus, these two types of carbohydrates provide the energy that will be the fuel of the body at the end of their journey. Fiber, another type of carbohydrate, is known as carbohydrate forms that the body cannot fully digest.

In Which Foods Are Carbohydrates Found?

The intake of carbohydrates in the body, of course, takes place through food. Essentially all plants contain carbohydrates, which means that carbohydrates are naturally present in many phases of the daily diet. Some foods, such as meat and fish products, some types of cheese, nuts and oils, are low in carbohydrates. Foods containing high amounts of carbohydrates in their unrefined form are listed as follows:

Fruits such as apples, bananas, strawberries, mangoes, melons and oranges
Starchy vegetables such as potatoes, corn, and peas
Legumes such as beans, lentils, and peas
Milk and milk products
Cereals

What Are the Healthy Carbohydrates to Have in an Ideal Diet?

It can be said that nutritious carbohydrate sources that contribute to the body in many ways include the following food groups:

Whole grains: Quinoa, barley, brown rice, oatmeal, whole grain pasta, and whole grain breakfast cereals
Fruits: Strawberry, citrus, melon, apple, pear, banana and kiwi
Starchy vegetables: Sweet potatoes, corn, peas and carrots
Legumes: Lentils, beans, kidney beans, beans, chickpeas, and soybeans
Dairy products: Low-fat or skim milk and unprocessed yogurt
Non-starchy Vegetables: Leafy greens, spinach, kale, asparagus, tomatoes, broccoli, cauliflower, green beans, cucumbers, peppers, zucchini, and mushrooms
Nuts and seeds: Pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, almonds, cashews, walnuts, peanuts and pistachios


What are the Harmful Carbohydrates to Avoid?

Simple carbohydrates are the sources of harmful carbohydrates that should be avoided. Simple carbohydrates, defined as “empty energy sources”, consist of processed sugar and foods that use processed sugar. It is possible to rank them under the following general groups:

Refined sugar
Foods made from white (refined) flour, such as bread, cakes and cookies
Sugary and carbonated drinks
Foods high in sugar such as candy, chocolate, wafers
Chips etc. fried foods


What is Low Carb?

The definition of low carbohydrate is used for foods or diets with low or reduced carbohydrates.

In recent years, many people are trying to keep their daily carbohydrate intake between 25 and 150 grams by turning to low-carb diets for weight loss and similar reasons. However, not taking carbohydrates, which are the energy storage of the body, at sufficient levels can bring with it side effects such as fatigue. For this reason, it is absolutely necessary to consult an expert before switching to low-carb intake!

What Are the Harms of High Carbohydrates?

Although carbohydrate intake has good effects such as providing energy to the body, excessive consumption has a very negative effect on the functioning of the body. Especially simple carbohydrates from some processed foods can cause serious problems such as metabolic diseases, diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. Excess simple carbohydrates in the daily diet cause much more sugar to enter the body. This means that beta cells have to produce more insulin to convert excess sugar in the blood to glycogen.

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