Sunday, 1 November 2015

What are carbohydrates?

You can google up carbohydrates and you will come up with about 267000 results. But our mantra is “keep it simple” and that’s what I’m going to do. Carbohydrates provide energy to our body.
a) It enables us to do work, to move, to play, to study, to make love, to be happy, and control our emotions.
b) It promotes cell fertilization and development. Is your skin looking dull or is your hair weak? Both are made up of cells and carbohydrates provide energy to these cells to develop and grow.
c) Carbohydrates are vital for the correct functioning of our brain, heart, nervous, digestive and immune system.
d) Fiber, which is a form of carbohydrate, is essential for the elimination of waste materials and toxins from the body, keeping the intestines disease free and clean. There are two kinds of carbohydrates.

Simple Carbohydrates – The body is able to break down these carbohydrates quickly into energy. Simply put, simple carbs are easily digested by the body.  They give your body and brain instant energy and power. Examples of simple carbohydrates are fruits, milk, yoghurt, honey and sugar.

Complex Carbohydrates – The body takes longer to break down these foods into energy. Simply put, complex carbs take time for the body to digest and are usually packed with fiber, vitamins and minerals.
These foods give the body sustained energy for a longer period of time. You should usually have a breakfast rich in complex carbs to give you sustained energy through the day. This does not stop you from adding simple carbs to your breakfast either.

You should have complex carbs an hour before your workouts to provide you sustained energy for a productive workout. Students should consume complex carbs to give them energy to study through the night. This is good to consume before an interview as it can provide continuous energy release and sustain concentration levels.

Examples of complex carbohydrates are vegetables, breads, cereals, legumes and whole grains.
Cholesterol, fat and complex carbohydrates: Porridge, also known as oats, is a heart friendly food and you will find most nutritionists recommending this wonder food to their weight loss clients. Complex carbs digest slowly; it actually physically moves slowly through your intestines, dragging fat molecules along with it and stabilizing blood sugar levels in the body, which, in turn, are both great for maintaining healthy cholesterol levels and reducing your body fat.
So you see, one common aspect between carbs and ... is that they both provide energy, but at different levels.
It is very important that you have the right mix of carbs at the right time of the day. It is important that I mention this here; Carbohydrates are the only nutrients that reach the brain and provide it with energy. Proteins and fats never reach the brain. It is now a known fact that if your food plan has less carbs in, you are bound to find yourself irritable, emotional and more stressed through the day, because your brain is demanding energy from the only source that can provide it energy, and it is not getting the required amount. Carbohydrates provide the brain with energy, which is, in turn, used to produce hormones called “endorphins” which enhance the mood. Other hormones called “serotonin” that make you feel happy and “tryptophan” that help you sleep, also require “carb power” to be produced and released by the brain.
So you need carbohydrates in your food plan, simple and complex, to reach a level of fitness. 

No comments:

Post a Comment