Eating Right for Peak Energy & Weight Management

There is much misunderstanding in the general public as to the value of carbohydrates in our diets. While the debate continues over what percentage of our meals should consist of carbohydrates, there seems to be consensus on the types of carbohydrates we should be consuming. Carbohydrate foods are sugars and starches. Starches are converted by the body into sugar. The more complex the starch, the more time it takes the body to convert it into sugar (glucose).

 



A moderate-to-large quantity of fat in a meal significantly slows stomach emptying time. A high-fiber meal similarly delays stomach emptying time. In effect, this turns the meal into a timed-release food capsule. The food is digested over two to four hours, slowly trickling sugar into the bloodstream thereby avoiding insulin-induced hypoglycemia. In contrast, the typical high-sugar/carbohydrate, low-protein, low-fat, low-fiber meal like sugar-loaded breakfast cereals, pancakes, toast, or snack foods may be digested and absorbed within 20-45 minutes, bringing about a brain-and-body-dysfunction which produces a rapid blood sugar rise followed by an insulin-induced blood sugar crash. It is specifically this sensing of low blood sugar by the brain that results in the typical roller coaster carbohydrate cravings that plague so many overweight people.

Most sugars and carbohydrates are refined. Our modern food processing separates most of the sugar or starch of a plant from the rest of the plants fiber and most of its vitamins, minerals and other nutrients.

 

 Over-cooking usually removes any of the rest of the nutrients. We are left with carbohydrates that are not complex enough to allow the body time to slowly process the sugar to be used for energy. The sugar immediately enters the bloodstream setting up the body for poor health conditions manifested in many ways, including ADD symptoms and the highs & lows of hypoglycemia with resultant carbohydrate cravings.

Carbohydrate content should be no more than 25% to 40% of any meal or snack. Also, it is not enough to simply eat complex carbohydrates as opposed to processed ones. A high percentage dietary intake of any carbohydrate not balanced by a greater percentage of fat and protein will still cause poor response by the body to a resultant carbohydrate, sugar overload.

 

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