Do you know that too much of anything is bad?
Everything you do (exercise, work…) or take in (food, water, drinks, medications, etc) needs to be in moderate quantity to maintain a healthy living.
As the Dietitian would say “To eat is one thing, but to eat intelligently is the art of Nutrition” – Fasehun Oyetola, RD.
In recent times, Carbohydrates have been given a notorious name. Many say Carbohydrates brings in too much energy and load hence they become obese when taking it in a meal, some still believe it increases their risk of Celia disease and for some more; it gives them constipation and so on…
Are carbohydrates really as bad as painted?
Come with us on this ride as Fasehun Oyetola unravel more around this unique class of the food.
It is interesting to note that Carbohydrates are the first of the 3 major classes of food nutrients, this means your food is not nutrient adequate and healthy without them!
There are two types of carbohydrates:
- Simple Carbohydrates and
- Complex Carbohydrates
The Simple Carbohydrates are easily digested and absorbed faster into the body while the Complex Carbohydrates are digested more slowly because of fibers that are abundant in them. Some examples of Complex carbs are; Brown or local rice, Oats, Wheat, Brown pasta, Wheat bread, Vegetables, etc and they are the healthier options of carbohydrates if you ask me.
Sincerely, Carbohydrates occupy an indispensable contribution to our health. First, they are well-known to provide fuel for the brain and CNS (don’t bother about that term), they spare your little protein from being used as body fuel, they are involved in the reproduction process, immune system, blood clotting to mention a few… are you surprised? There’s still much to unravel.
Have you ever had headaches or pain somewhere on your body? Your reaction to it is definitely to fix it, not cut it of. The bone of contention on this unique nutrient is not cutting it off your diet because when you do that, you risk having hypoglycemia, which means the brain is not getting enough glucose.
One sad story that trended on Google about a lady who was found slumped on her bathroom floor was noted to be brain dead by the time she was rushed into the hospital, her mother explained that the lady had been on a high protein, very low carbs diet for so long…
That and many of such unfortunate events makes us know that a low carb diet (carbohydrates below 45-50% of the meal), especially over a long period of time is detrimental to health and life!
How to maximize your carbohydrates for health benefits is to do the following:
1. Choose the Right Quality of Carbohydrates
Make your diet choices more of natural (organic) carbohydrates, the whole grains, the fiber-rich foods, the unprocessed meals. Avoid the carbohydrates soaked in syrups or corn starch or artificial sugars.
Avoid also much consumption of ‘processed carbs’ such as flour products e.g. pastries, sweets, chocolates, and other shallow nutrient diets. Take a Mediterranean diet of whole-grain cereals, fresh vegetables, seafood, salmon, mackerel fish intakes, etc.
2. Quantity is Key!
Excess of any good thing is equally bad! Hence, excess of high quality carbs can be harmful in the long run. Avoid heavy meals please, as much as; ‘never leave the dining table filling full’! Therefore, let your intakes be 40-50% of your total kilocalories. Remember, everyone should be within a specific kilocalorie; a healthy female should be between 1500kcal-2000kcal while a male should be between 1700kcl to 2200kcal based on many other factors like your activity level, your age, etc.
3. Timing of Food Intake
Regular meals cannot be overemphasized! Breakfast should be taken early enough, lunch is important and dinner should not be late or heavy in quantity. We work less at night so our meals don’t get metabolized or digested quickly because of the low activity level. Heavy meals, especially at night, is one of the major causes of the distended or big abdomen. In addition, meal skipping is not always the solution to weight loss like I usually tell many, when you skip meals you eat more in your next single sitting.
We take a chill pill here, Chew on these, till we catch up on our gist next time. There’s still more to uncover about carbohydrates, do stay tuned for the part B of War against Carbs!
Till then, go, eat to live, and don’t live to eat!