Do you know the difference between ‘Smart Carbs or Dumb Carbs’? There had been a movement away from some of these ‘Smart Carbs’ that you see in the photo. Our world is finally realizing that it is not about low-carbs. It is about ‘smart carbs’ not about deleting carbs from our meals entirely. There are many carbs that are actually true SuperFoods with a lot of health benefits.
What are Smart Carbs?’
Here is a list of them:
- Fruits and Vegetables
- Whole Grains
Complex carbohydrates are Smart carbs and can be very good for you. You can have carbs, as long as you choose them carefully; that is why they are called smart carbs! It’s all about balance. The body’s muscles need smart carbs as fuel and so does the brain.
Which carbs are NOT SMART?
These are dumb carbs:
White bread & pasta
- White rice
- Bottled and canned fruits and juices
- Pops/sodas and other sugar products
- Food that is full of refined carbohydrates like sugar (even those made with honey, maple syrup, etc) cakes & cookies.
IF IT’S WHITE, IT’S NOT RIGHT!
Those foods are simply empty calories with very little nutrition in them.
The Best Smart Carbs Are
- Fruits and vegetables especially the green ones that grow above the ground like spinach, kale, or dark, leafy lettuce.
- Seeds including sunflower, sesame and pumpkin seeds.
- Nuts such as almonds, Brazil Nuts, Pine Nuts, Walnuts, and Hazelnuts.
- Whole grains such as brown rice, millet, quinoa, buckwheat, wild rice, whole wheat bread * pasta, multi-grain cereal, bread, oatmeal, and oat bran.
- Beans such as black beans, kidney beans, and garbanzo beans.
Why Smart Carbs are Important
Our body requires about 60-65% carbohydrates to feed the brain, nervous system, and muscles. Glucose is the predominant carbohydrate used in the body. Blood sugar refers to glucose in the blood and is a major fuel source for most cells of the body. The muscles store glucose in the form of glycogen for endurance.
Your brain relies on glucose to meet its energy needs. Unless the diet supplies adequate carbohydrates, the body’s metabolism switches to a starvation mode, in which body fat is burned to meet most energy needs. To fuel the brain during starvation, glucose is synthesized from amino acids obtained by the breakdown of muscles. You can see why the right kind of carbohydrates is essential for a balanced body.
The problem with understanding carbohydrates is classification.
For simple distinction, there are three categories of carbohydrates:
- Complex – Cereal grains such as wheat, rice, rye, millet, sorghum, and corn. Beans and seeds of legumes contain 40% of their weight as starch. Complex carbohydrates occur in plants as starch and fiber. Learn all the many health benefits of Quinoa, Wild Rice, Buckwheat, Oatmeal, and Cornmeal.
- Simple Which are Dumb Carbs – Sucrose, dextrose, fructose and corn syrup or anything on a label ending in -“ose.” Simple carbohydrates are referred to as sugars.
- Refined or Processed Make them Dumb Carbs – Sugar and white flour are highly purified materials, containing little, if any, of the nutrients found in the whole food from which the carbohydrate was prepared; therefore, they supply mainly calories.
Why We Don’t Eat Smart Carbs?
There has been a lot of confusion about carbs which has scared some but another reason is that we don’t know how to COOK complex carbohydrates properly.
Learn How to Cook Quinoa: Here is a very simple, quick way to cook this superfood. This is a very healthy smart carb grain.
Learn How to Cook Perfect Millet with my very simple energy-conserving way.
Getting gas from beans is a major reason why so many people don’t eat beans. Beans are a superfood and have many benefits for us.
It is easy to cook beans but it requires planning ahead of time. Learn how to cook beans, see my recipe. How To Cook Beans and Lentils To Prevent Gas
It is also about smart fats, see OILS and smart proteins (vegetable fats are less clogging but again- don’t eat too much).
Learn which smart carbs are best for you and which dumb carbs are the worst for you. Vital Health Assessment will help you discover what is going on in your body and then determines the perfect foods, diet, and supplements to achieve your health goals.
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A Few Meal Ideas Full of Smart Carbs For You
These recipes do not have any dumb carbs in them.
Delicious Green Beans with Almonds – Green beans with golden almonds are a very tasty dish and simple to make too. The perfect dish to make when green beans are in season or anytime. Green beans are full of so many health benefits. They are a tasty healthy option to add to a meal. Many of us grow them in our garden so we can eat them fresh in the summer.
Delicious Radish Quinoa Salad with Arugula – This colorful radish quinoa salad is a yummy and nourishing salad for any season. It is full of good protein from the quinoa. It is a whole meal in one bowl. How easy is that for dishwashing! I love salad and grain bowls that are packed with nutrients.
Delicious Wild Rice Risotto with Corn and Mushrooms – This is a delicious wild rice risotto which is very simple to make. The addition of mushrooms and corn makes it extra yummy. Wild rice is one of the gluten-free superfoods. It is thought to be the most decadent grain with its distinctive, nutty, earthy flavor. It actually isn’t even rice, so it is gluten-free, which is good news for many of us.
Yummy Pesto Pasta Green Beans – I love this pesto pasta with green beans. This is a wonderful Italian dish made with gluten-free pasta and fresh green beans. This meal is delicious, very easy to make and healthy too.
Sweet Wild Blueberry Keto Smoothie is Easy to Make – I love this wild blueberry keto smoothie. It is perfect for a quick breakfast or makes a tasty afternoon snack. What makes it keto is that there are only a small amount of blueberries in it and all of the other ingredients are keto-friendly. I like to make it a little sweeter by adding a few drops of stevia to mine. Wild blueberries are a tasty superfood that for centuries has been a part of the native North American’s diet. These small wild blueberries are almost always found in the freezer section of most grocery stores. I love wild blueberries and almost always have some in my freezer if I can’t find them fresh.
Delightfully Delicious Wild Rice Salad –This wild rice salad is delicious, nourishing as it is full of smart carbs and filling. It has tasty colorful vegetables in it to give the wild rice a good contrast and is a crunchy salad for lunch or dinner. A very good thing about this salad is it is another whole meal in a bowl which means there are fewer dishes to wash after eating this delicious meal. Also, I love wild rice!