[ Diabetes Solutions ]

Carbs – Simple vs Complex, High vs Low Glycemic, Good vs Bad

A few months ago I wrote about using the glycemic index (GI) ranking to manage weight and diabetes. 1. The glycemic index is a ranking system for carbohydrates, based on how fast a particular carbohydrate will make blood glucose rise in comparison to an equal quantity of pure glucose. The GI compares equal quantities of carbohydrates and provides a measure of carbohydrate quality but not quantity. Dieters and people with diabetes use the Glycemic Index because blood sugar levels can impact fat storage and the progression of diabetes. We identified 1,608 incident cases of type 2 diabetes mellitus in 297,755 person-years of follow-up. If your sugar levels are above 150 mg/dl, I would advice you to completely avoid any fried snacks, nuts, coconut chutney, butter, ghee, mayonnaise, and red meats for the next 3 months.

The study found that the dual-path enteral diversion was safely created in all patients, and the IAS devices were expelled without incident. At birth, there was no significant difference in birth weight (LGI 3.3 ± 0.1 kg vs. And despite the fact that the glycemic index was originally created for diabetics as a way of figuring out which foods would be best for them, it quickly became used by bodybuilders, athletes, and regular people who just want to look good and be healthy. Most importantly, you need to watch for fat content of a low GI food. A five-page handout, lower literacy, and this includes a brief description of glycemic index and a list of 111 common foods and their glycemic index. Some common foods with a high GI rating include white bread, white rice, corn flakes, crackers and most sugary and/or highly processed snack foods. for the treatment of patients who have uncontrolled type 2 diabetes and are obese.

Some common foods with a low GI rating include most fruits, vegetables, and beans. Of course, even though the glycemic index is much more useful than the basic “simple vs complex” classification for figuring out which high carb foods are best for us, it still has its flaws. These numbers will vary according to the health situations of individuals. For this reason, a measure called Glycemic Load was created to account for the amount of carbs present in a serving of a food and help counter this flaw. Even still, another big issue the glycemic index has is that it only measures foods when eaten in isolation. In the Nurses’ Health Study, a positive association between the GI and the risk of diabetes was observed over a 6-y period; the relative risk (RR) was 1.37 in a comparison of the highest with the lowest quintiles of GI (3). The problem here is that people just aren’t always eating these high carb foods in isolation, and that changes things dramatically.

One of the few statistically significant results of the study by Wolever et al was that the cohort following the low-GI diet had a higher fasting glucose and a lower glucose concentration 2 h after an oral glucose challenge than did the subjects following the other 2 diets (1). As it turns out, protein, fat and various other nutrients contained in the other foods being eaten at the same time can greatly affect the true glycemic index of a high carb food and the overall digestion/absorption of the meal that food is a part of. The closer a food is to its natural state, the better. They concluded that a reduction in the GI value of the diet improves overall blood glucose and lipid control (5). The more quickly blood glucose rises after eating, the higher the GI of the food. While the Glycemic Index can be incorporated into your diabetic meal planning, it is just one tool you can use. Both of you worked out the same way and ate the same number of calories each day as well as the same amount of protein and fat (all from identical sources, too).

Now, this is definitely NOT me saying that “bad” carbs are good and should be eaten all the time. I’m NOT saying that at all and do NOT recommend that you do. What I am saying though is that, in terms of body composition with all else being equal, there is no need to kill yourself with guilt or obsess like a crazy person if you enjoy eating white potatoes or white bread or some other similar food not typically considered a “good” carb every once in a while. The result is that you feel fuller for longer. Once medications are discontinued, blood glucose levels and A1c frequently increase. But based on the GL, we can predict that  two cups will raise it higher. You may have noticed my use of the word “direct” earlier (as in “no direct significant difference”), and that brings us to the “yes it does” portion of my 2 sided answer.

And that is, so called “bad” carbs digest faster and spike blood insulin levels higher, and as I mentioned before, this means you will A) not stay full for long, B) get hungrier sooner, and C) be hungry more often. And that right there is how “bad” carbs indirectly affect body composition in a negative way. This has to be removed and sent into the fat cells for storage. All research shows that there is indeed a very significant difference between different types of carbs in terms of your overall health. Diets high in “bad” carbs have been shown to cause a variety of health/medical issues, while diets high in “good” carbs have been shown to help prevent those very same issues. Simple carbs vs complex carbs and high glycemic foods vs low glycemic foods doesn’t appear to make any real direct significant difference in terms of fat gain, fat loss, building muscle, etc. as long as everything else (especially total calorie intake) is what it’s supposed to be.

At the same time, the differences are indeed quite significant in terms of overall health, as diets high in processed simple and/or high glycemic carbs have been shown to increase our risk of diabetes and heart disease. The majority of your daily carb intake should come from lower glycemic, higher fiber, nutrient-rich complex sources. Simple, processed, refined, higher glycemic sources should be greatly limited most of the time, with your post workout meal being the main exception. How Many Grams Of Carbs Per Day and Which Foods To Eat? With all of that covered, it’s time to move on to the specifics of exactly how many grams of carbs you should eat per day, what foods those carbs should come from, and how to factor it all into your diet plan.

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