Carbohydrates: Simple versus Complex
There are two general types of carbohydrate:
Simple carbohydrates are sugars. All simple carbohydrates are made of just one or two sugar molecules. They are the quickest source of energy, as they are very rapidly digested. Unfortunately, most foods high in simple carbohydrates contain few nutrients other than calories. They also lack fiber and pass into the bloodstream rather quickly. Therefore, it is best to limit your intake of simple carbohydrates.
Some food sources of simple carbohydrates:
Complex carbohydrates are made of sugar molecules strung together like a necklace. They digest slowly, so they keep blood sugar more stable than do simple carbohydrates. They are often rich in fiber, more satisfying, and more health promoting. Complex carbohydrates are commonly found in whole plant foods and, therefore, are also often high in vitamins and minerals.
These whole plant foods are great sources of complex carbohydrates:
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