You must have heard about the term “Complex Carbohydrates“. What are they and why are they so important for the proper functioning of the body?
A substantial portion of your diet must include carbohydrates for your body to function efficiently. When you consume carbohydrates, your body breaks them up and converts them into sugar or glycogen which is an important source of energy. If you don’t eat carbohydrates, you might end up feeling lethargic, weak and have a difficult time performing your daily tasks. But not all carbs are good for you. There are two kinds of carbohydrates – Complex (or Good) carbohydrates and Simple (or Bad) carbohydrates. The Complex carbohydrates break down slowly and provide energy to the body. They contain ‘fiber’ which keeps you full for a longer time post meals and it also eases the digestion. On the contrary, the Simple carbohydrates provide instant energy, leaving you hungry soon after meals and as a result you end up eating more food. It is important to keep these aspects of carbohydrates in mind and eat according to what’s good for your body. In order to help you identify and understand the many food items that are full of ‘good’ carbs, mentioned below are the Complex Carbohydrates Examples-
1. Whole Grains:
Whole grains have a high fiber content and a moderate protein content. They are a good source of complex carbs and are very low in fat. Millet, wheat germ, oats, wild and brown rice, oat bran, cornmeal, buckwheat and the food item made from these grains (such as bagel, buns and rolls, whole grain bread, whole grain pasta, bran cereal, macaroni etc.) are all complex carbohydrates examples.
Vegetables are low in fat, have lots of minerals and vitamins and contain water as well. Most of the vegetables are examples of complex carbohydrates such as cucumber, onion, beets, green beans, celery, peas, zucchini, brussel sprouts, coleslaw, collard greens, sweet peppers, summer squash, winter squash, swiss chard, carrot, broccoli, spinach, cauliflower, eggplant, turnip greens, yam, potato, lettuce, cabbage, celery, asparagus, artichokes etc.
Fruits are high in fiber, water, vitamins and have a very less fat content. Fruits that are full of complex carbohydrates are apples with skin, avocado, banana, grape, guava, kiwi, water melon, figs, cantaloupe, blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, cranberries, mango, papaya, raisins, tangerine, nectarine, pineapple, plums, oranges, apricots, prunes, pears and grapefruits.
Legumes are also known as Pulses. Lentils and beans are the most common types of legumes. Some examples of beans are black beans, kidney beans, navy beans, pinto beans, soy beans, lima beans, black beans, peas and garbanzo beans.
5. Other sources:
Dairy items such as skimmed milk and low-fat yogurt; nuts and seeds such as almonds, brazil nuts, cashews, raw coconut, flax seeds, macadamia nuts, pistachio nuts, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, walnuts etc., are all packed with complex carbohydrates.
These were some complex carbohydrates examples. The complex carbohydrates are known to be the building block of a healthy body and eating these foods in their natural form will give you more health benefits.