Exercise 101: Importance of Carbs


Exercise 101: Importance of Carbs

In simple words, carbohydrates are mainly sugar, starches, and fibre. Carbs are one of the three basic macronutrients, the other two being protein and fat. It is a neutral combination of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen that fuels energy in the human body to live a healthy life. There are so many arguments related to the importance of carbs in our daily life, and irrespective of where you fall in this debate, it’s hard to disagree that carbs play a fundamental role in our healthy survival. 

*Carbohydrates break down into glucose, and our body further uses it for energy, and later it gets stored in the liver and muscles for the future.

Functions of Carbs

Four main functions of carbs-

  • Builds macromolecules in the body
  • Spares protein 
  • Stores energy
  • Produces energy

“The importance of carbs in the human body is as important as the sun is to plants.”

Carbs are the most necessary fuel our body needs to stimulate our vital organs like the brain, kidneys, heart muscles, and nervous system. It keeps our digestive system in check, helps us feel full, and our blood sugar levels in control. Though there are plentiful benefits of carbs, we always have to make sure that we consume them in moderation to keep our sugar levels and weight steady. Healthy carbs help us to meet our body’s nutritional needs to keep us healthy. 

“It is always important to understand that we are what we eat.”

The importance of carbs is reminded when we start to have headaches, fatigue, weakness, difficulty concentrating, nausea, constipation, bad breath, and vitamin and mineral deficiencies. It is possible to survive without sugar, but cutting out carbs entirely from the diet is difficult. Carbohydrates are the essential source of energy, and in their absence, the body starts consuming protein and fat for energy. 

Categories of Carbs

Carbs are distributed into three main categories-

Sugar-  Unprocessed sugar is simple carbohydrates, and the processed one goes by the name of refined carbohydrates. The body breaks down simple carbs easily and uses them as a source of energy. It is found organically in food items such as fruits, milk, and milk products, whereas refined sugar is found in candies, cakes, soft drinks, syrups, table sugar, etc.

Starch- Starchy foods provide minerals and vitamins to our system. It takes longer to break down starch, and as a result, our blood sugar levels stay steady, and fullness lasts longer. 

Starch-rich carbs are easily found in-

  • Beans- Legumes, black beans, chickpeas, lentils, and kidney beans.
  • Fruits- Apples, berries, and melons.
  • Whole-grain foods- Rice, oatmeal, whole-wheat bread and pasta.
  • Vegetables- Corn, peas, and potatoes

Fibre- Fiber is the healthiest form of carbs. It is found in plant-based food products such as fruits, vegetables, and whole-grain products. Our bodies can’t break down fibre, so most of it passes through our intestines, stimulating and aiding our digestive system. It also keeps our blood sugar in check and lowers our cholesterol levels. 

Fibre-rich carbs are easily found in- 

  • Fruits- Fruits with edible skins like apples and peaches or seeds.
  • Nuts and seeds- almonds, peanuts, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, and sunflower seeds.
  • Whole-grain- Brown rice, oatmeal, quinoa, cereal, and wheat-based bread, and pasta.
  • Vegetables- Corn, lima beans, broccoli, and sprouts.

*Any form of animal product (meat and dairy products) has no fibre.

Whole/Simple Carbs vs. Refined Carbs

Whole carbs are not processed and consist of healthy properties that are found naturally in the food, while refined carbs are processed and have natural properties filtered or removed.

Whole carbohydrates-rich food items are vegetables, fruits, quinoa, millets, barley, legumes, potatoes, whole grains, etc.

Refined carbohydrates-rich food items are artificial sugar/sweetener, soft drinks, white bread, cakes, items made with all-purpose flour(Maida), etc.

Studies have proven that refined carbs consumption leads to health conditions like obesity and diabetes. They also crash sugar levels subsequently and lead to food cravings.

*Carbs are not the cause of obesity if we consume them mindfully. A well-controlled consumption of carbs could also help our weight to be steady.

Debunked Myths About Carbs

  • Fruits are high in sugar
  • Carbs make you obese 
  • Do not eat carbs at night
  • Low carbs help you lose weight

Final Thoughts

The importance of carbs in pandemic healthcare is also something that we should talk about. Carbs craving boosts our serotonin production, which has a positive effect on our mood and energy. It is an instant source of happiness during pandemic healthcare. Hence, carbohydrates rich food is the ideal way of self-medicating and treating anxiety. 

In these times when pandemic healthcare has become one of the most important topics of conversation these days. We all should be aware of the importance of carbs and carbohydrates rich food in our day-to-day life to beat the stress levels in these wistful times.

It does become hard to decipher what is good and what is not, especially when there is so much information available on the internet related to carbs. It is enough to understand that excess of everything is bad for our body; even the excess of the best of things is contagious. 

In an era where it is certain to expect uncertainty, one should be prepared before things fall apart. Now and then, we hear masses losing their lives due to no financial support and health insurance.

It is better to not go unarmed when you go out to fight, so, avail yourself a health insurance from Care Health Insurance’s most comprehensive and specially tailored plans suiting your needs. 

Hurry up before it gets too late. Reach us now!

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