Carbs have become almost a dirty word. Everyone is focused on low carb this and zero carb that. But we are not getting the whole truth. Rather, we are not reading about the whole truth. For example, is a low carb diet a low complex carb diet or a low simple carb diet? There is a difference between the two, otherwise, we would just call them carbs. But it is important to know the difference between complex vs simple carbs and to take some examples into account. Not only for your weight loss goals but for your overall health.
Complex vs simple carbs examples could help you reach your weight loss goals more easily as well as in a healthier manner. The first thing to understand is that carbs provide energy for the body. It is a macronutrient that is the primary source of energy. The reason we do not see keto diets talking about the difference is because it can be a little more difficult to utilize in real life. For example, you will not find “complex” or “simple” on a nutrition label. Any company that goes into that much detail on a nutrition label should be the only brand we buy from. Ever. Therefore, low carb diets lump them together and tell you to avoid them altogether. But you can still learn the difference between complex vs simple carbs and then utilize them in your own diets.
The first thing to learn about complex vs simple carbs is what they are. Complex carbs can be found in many different things. In fact, complex carbs are not easily avoidable. You can find complex carbs in fruits, veggies, nuts, beans, whole grains and more. Foods with complex carbs also usually have other vitamins and minerals like fiber. People often refer to complex carbs as good carbs because they are still broken down by the body and turned into glucose which is then used for energy. But these carbs do not come with much of the stuff we find to be bad for our health.
Simple carbs or bad carbs are easily categorized as sugars. You will mostly find simple carbs in foods like raw sugar, brown sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, fruit juice concentrate, and more. The theme here is easy to see, sugar. Sugar is filled with simple carbs. The problem with simple carbs is that they are not often found naturally in things, they are added. Simple carbs have a lot of the nutrients like fiber removed and have been proven to lead to obesity, heart disease, and especially type 2 diabetes.
Complex vs Simple Carbs
Looking at complex vs simple carbs can show us why we should care. Complex carbs are filled with other nutrients and that makes them valuable to the body. But the most important thing for people watching carbs is the fiber. These carbs take longer to digest which means you will feel full for longer periods of time. Simple carbs have had all the nutrients removed from them. That means they will digest faster, provide your body with less, and could be stored by the body for energy later more easily. That storage is often referred to as fat.
Avoiding Simple Carbs
It is easier than you think to avoid simple carbs. Especially since most simple carbs are added to things after the fact. Complex vs simple carbs mean knowing what to avoid. Here is a short list of foods to avoid when trying to avoid simple carbs:
- Baked Treats
- Fruit Juice Concentrate
- Breakfast Cereal
And of course, anything with raw sugar, brown sugar, corn syrup, and high-fructose corn syrup.
Instead, replace those carbs with complex carbs that have actual health value. We should all be eating more whole grains, apples, berries, bananas, broccoli, leafy greens, beans, and carrots. These foods have complex carbs that are good for you and your body. The result, complex vs simple carbs, complex carbs are the winner, and we might not want to avoid them as much as we think we need to in order to lose weight.