Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Basic Nutrients- Carbohydrates

Carbs- Now, most people tend to think that carbohydrates only comes from grains and starches. However, carbohydrates are also found in fruits and vegetables as well. The only “bad carbs” out there are those found in potato chips, white bread, fries, sodas and cookies. Carbohydrates function as an energy source since glucose is the body’s main fuel. The Recommend Daily Allowance for carbohydrate intake is 130 grams per day. As a dietary guideline, choose and prepare foods with little added sugar. Lastly, select fiber rich foods, vegetables, and whole grains. Now, let's start out my finding out the chemical composition of carbs and where they are most likely to be found. 
  • Glucose- fruits, veggies, honey. Also blood sugar that is used for energy
  • Fructose- fruits, honey, corn
  • Sucrose- table sugar made from sugar cane and sugar beets
  • Lactose- milk sugar found in milk and dairy products
  • COMPLEX- found in grains, vegetables, and legumes
Grains- When choosing the right grain, make sure to know which type of flour you are consuming. As a rule of thumb, refined grains are not as nutritious as whole-grain products-even with the added nutrients.
  • Refined flour- finely ground that is usually enriched with nutrients and bleached for whiteness, sometimes called white flour
  • Wheat flour- any flour that is a combination of the endosperm or wheat kernel part of the grain
  • Whole-wheat flour- any flour from the entire wheat kernel
    • Nutrient benefits- whole-wheat bread is high in iron, niacin, thiamin, riboflavin, folate, vitamin b6, magnesium, zinc, and fiber
This salad is loaded with carbohydrates from spinach, to onions
tomatoes, cucumbers, and bell peppers
Fruits and Vegetables- Consume a variety of these fresh or frozen and limit produce sources that contain sauces, syrups, or come in juices
Fiber- found in plants such as fruits, vegetables, and legumes. While carbohydrates are digested and absorbed, fibers are not digestion but excreted as feces. Consuming fiber improves weight control, betters your blood glucose, reduces your risk of heart disease, and promotes a healthier gastrointestinal function.
In Your Diet- As we should know, a diet high in sugar may be low in nutrients.  Moderate your sugar intake by limiting sodas, sports drinks, sugary cereals, candy, and other sweets. If you buy canned fruits, choose fruits that are in canned in water or their own juice instead of syrup. Just like with other food groups, it is important that you balance of each to perform at your very best!

  • Start your day with whole grains! Oatmeal with fruit and honey or a cold cereal are delicious options. For added protein and variety, add in spinach, tomatoes, and eggs on an English muffin for a tasty breakfast sandwich.
  • Trade in traditional white potatoes for sweet potatoes!
  • If you are tired of rice, try newer grain options such as quinoa, cous cous, millet, or bulgar.
  • Beans are a powerhouse food that pack both fiber and protein. 
-Eating Clean in College

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