Six Picks: The Top 6 Things You Need to Know About Smart Carbs

1. Know your simple carbs. Sucrose, fructose, and lactose are all simple carbohydrates, and are comprised mostly of simple sugars. It’s generally not essential to have a large amount of simple carbs in your diet.
2. Know your complex carbs. Made of starch and fibers, they’re often referred to as whole grains. They can be found in whole wheat flour, rolled oats, barley, rye, and brown rice among other foods. These can help reduce the risk of heart disease and some cancers.
3. Smart Carbs are essential for exercise and function. The majority of energy you use on a daily basis comes from the carbohydrates you consume. Not just for running, biking and swimming, carbs also give your body the energy for essential functions like your heartbeat, breathing, and digestion.
4. Smart carbs provide a way for you to consume fewer calories. Put simply, most foods that have not been processed are going to
contain fewer calories. So, when looking at carbs, try to find the least processed sources. For example, eating cooked oatmeal rather than an oatmeal cookie is always a good idea.
5. Simple carbs mean more than simplicity. When fiber is removed from food, with fat and sugar being added, the calories skyrocket while nutrition values plummet. Plus, the low nutrient density means that you’ll be eating more, just to feel full.
6. Incorporate Smart Carbs into meals and snacks. Try adding complex carbs to your regular meals and snacks. Instead of chips, try whole grain crackers, or whole grain versions of breads and cereals. Carrot sticks and fruit also contain smart carbs, and provide a much better choice than other carb-filled foods.

For more tips on eating ‘Smart Carbs”, check out Item # 2939 (ADA Complete Guide to Carb Counting) in our catalog or online at www.ncescatalog.com.

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