Difference between Good Carbs and Bad Carbs

Key Difference: Carbohydrates are grouped into two scientific categories: Complex carbohydrates (good carbs) and simple carbohydrates (bad carbs). Carbohydrates are differentiated by the process of which they become absorbed in the body. Bad carbohydrates get absorbed quickly and the energy absorbed spikes the sugar levels in the body, while good carbohydrates get absorbed slowly and the fiber is not even absorbed by the body, but the nutrients from the fiber are.

The word carbohydrates have been thrown around a lot lately, with many people going to diets or cutting out carbs from their meal to live a healthier life. Many of these people have just been following trends or what other people tell them by cutting almost every food that has carbs. The word ‘carbs’ have become synonymous with fats, which is not at all true. Carbs are an important addition to our diet and are required by the body. However, the body does not require some kinds of carbs. There are two kinds of carbs: Good Carbs and Bad Carbs.

What are carbohydrates? Carbohydrates are organic compounds that are made up oxygen, hydrogen and carbon. These compounds are important for humans as they are the source of chemical energy for living organisms, including humans. They are responsible for creating the energy that drives humans or power them. Without carbohydrates, the human body would not be able to function; hence are an important part of the human system. Carbohydrates are grouped into two scientific categories: Complex carbohydrates (good carbs) and simple carbohydrates (bad carbs). Carbohydrates come in several forms including sugars, starches and fibers. Complex carbohydrates are created by linking together three or more chains of sugar, which results in complex chains and requires time for the body to break it down. Simple carbohydrates are created by linking one or two chains of sugar, making it quite easy to break down and create energy.

According to many nutrition experts, a person should get almost 60% of daily energy from carbohydrates. However, the 60% suggested is supposed to be from good carbohydrates. How can you tell which are good and which are bad? Simple, is the food processed? Is the food refined? Does the food have high amounts of sugar? If the answer to any of these questions is yes, then the food probably has bad carbs. Good carbs are acquired from whole grains, fruits and vegetables. Also, carbs has a lot of fiber, which means that any food that has high amounts of fiber is healthy and has good carbs.

Carbohydrates are differentiated by the process of which they become absorbed in the body. Bad carbohydrates get absorbed quickly and the energy absorbed spikes the sugar levels in the body, while good carbohydrates get absorbed slowly and the fiber is not even absorbed by the body, but the nutrients from the fiber are. The fiber is excreted from the body after it has absorbed the nutrients from it.

In good carbohydrates, the process of absorption is slow; hence the energy is not added to the energy deposit in the body but rather is expended from the body during daily activities. In bad carbohydrates, the body absorbs the energy quickly and when not used saves it in an energy deposit for later use. This energy turns into fat when it is not expended.

It is easy to distinguish between good carbs and bad carbs once a person known what to look for. Good carbs are any foods that are full of fiber, have low amounts of sugar and deliver vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals. These include various whole grains, vegetables, fruits, beans, etc.

Bad carbs are refined grains that remove nutrients from it such as white bread, white rice, etc. These also have high amounts of sugar in it (regular, refined sugar, fructose, high fructose corn syrup, etc.) These only offer energy and few to no nutrients. They are also responsible for creating health problems such as diabetes, heart attacks, obesity, strokes, etc.

Image Courtesy: fatlossdietonline.com, fitness-found.com

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