Carbohydrates are not as bad as many diets will make you believe. They are necessary for the body to give you energy throughout the day. Carbs offer you more immediate energy compared to protein and fats, so they can help to perk you up and reduce sugar cravings quickly and effectively.
However, eating the wrong types of carbs can lead to health problems. Simple, refined carbs are ones that you want to leave off your shopping list as much as possible. Complex carbs will include enough fiber and other nutrients to help protect you from blood sugar spikes and energy crashes in the day.
The downside of simple carbs is often why many diets will demonize carbs completely. Many in the past did not understand the differences between the two types of carbs and how they break down in the body. That is not surprising considering all fats were once lumped together as being bad and all cholesterol was deemed to be unhealthy.
When it comes to high carb foods, make sure you consider all the benefits. Here are seven that should be added to your weekly list for a healthy and balanced diet.
Add More Quinoa to Your List
Quinoa is often referred to as a carb. It is a pseudocereal that is prepared just like a grain and is eaten similarly. However, it is a nutritious seed that is a complete protein. In other words, it has all the amino acids your body could need!
When cooked, it is made up of 21.3% carbs, which makes it a high carb food. The carbs are often acceptable when you look at the protein and fiber content. Despite some sugary elements, the protein and fiber help to keep the food intact for longer. The digestive system finds it harder to break down the food, which means the carbs are not sent straight to the bloodstream. You do not get the sugar overload and insulin release that you would with other grains.
Quinoa is so good that it is highly recommended in a vegan diet. This is a diet without any animal products, which makes getting a complete protein difficult. There’s only a small amount of non-animal product foods that have all the amino acids your body needs, and quinoa is one of them.
This is an ingredient also highly recommended for diabetes patients. Because of the protein and fiber, the carbs do not cause the sugar spikes that other foods do. Controlling the blood sugar naturally is essential for diabetic and pre-diabetic patients.
To make this food even better, there is no gluten involved. It is an excellent alternative to anything wheat based and perfect for those who specifically need a gluten-free diet. There’s no need to add gluten to the food, either. However, it is still worth checking the packaging to make sure the ingredient is not processed in a food with gluten products.
Whether you want to live a healthy lifestyle, avoid gluten, enjoy meatless days, or lose weight, quinoa is something you want to eat. It is easy to prepare and works with almost anything. You will be amazed at the dishes you can create.
Stock Up on Oats
Porridge may have once been considered the breakfast for French commoners, but it has always been a staple in all Scottish diets. There’s a big reason for this: it is excellent for the health.
While it is a high carb food, it is also a high fiber food. This is the best thing to keep your digestive system in order, which will help in many ways. With an efficient digestive system, your body will absorb all nutrients from food and support the immune system. Almost 11% of raw oat services are made up of fiber.
How much are carbs? Around 66% of the food is carbs. That can sound like a bad thing, but it is the fiber that helps to avoid any issues with the blood sugar levels. The fiber helps to encourage the body to break the food down slowly, offering excellent blood sugar control naturally. There’s no need for insulin spikes at all.
In fact, the fiber is so good that you are left feeling full and satisfied for hours. You can have breakfast of porridge oats, and you will be fine until lunchtime! This makes it an excellent weight loss food since you will naturally eat fewer calories throughout the day.
If the fiber and carbs were not enough, you would gain the benefit of antioxidants, minerals, and other nutrients. This is food that will support your immune system ten-fold. You gain nutrients that will fight against free radicals, reduce inflammation, and improve the overall health. There’s also the benefit of more protein in oats than the majority of other grains out there. Oats have been linked to reducing all types of health problems, including heart disease risk.
Plus, oats are affordable. You can get a large bag that can last you months for less than $10. Just make sure you store them in a glass or plastic, airtight tub to avoid moisture getting into them.
Look Out for Buckwheat
Like quinoa, buckwheat is known as a pseudocereal. It means that it is prepared and treated like a grain, but it is not quite a grain in its makeup. It is not wheat and has no gluten at all, making it perfect for those who need or prefer a gluten-free diet.
Buckwheat is 71.5% carbs, which makes it extremely high carb. This is when raw. The amount will reduce to 20% when it is cooked! That is still high and leaves many people fearing that it will cause health problems. However, the high fiber and protein, like with quinoa, make it one of the healthiest foods to buy on a weekly basis.
Like the other foods on this list, buckwheat is full of minerals, antioxidants, and more. There are more nutrients than most other grains out there, and there are studies that show this is good for the heart. Buckwheat does not have the same blood sugar effect as many other grains, because of the high fiber and protein amounts. Those with diabetes are encouraged to eat more of this pseudocereal on a weekly basis.
More studies are still required, but the results have been so far encouraging. People who eat it also find that they are fuller for longer. They do not eat as much through the day, helping them lose and maintain their weight. There are not the same energy highs and lows that a lot of other high carb foods cause.
Do not Forget to Stock Up on Your Bananas
Let’s look at fruits for your carbs. You know that all fruits are made up of water, fiber,and carbs. In fact, all fruits have natural sugars—some more than others. It is the natural sugars that give them a bad name.
Bananas are one of the most demonized fruits of all. Most low carb diets will recommend against them, but they are highly beneficial for the health.They are extremely easy to eat and advised to give to babies as their first foods.
You will get around 23% carbs within a banana. Some of them are the natural sugars, but you will also get starchy carbs. This is an important thing to focus on. Starchy carbs break down much slower than the natural sugars. They encourage the digestive system to take its time, leaving you feeling fuller but also preventing the instant sugar rush you would get from any sugar.
If you want more starchy carbs, opt for bananas that are not quite ripe. These are the greener ones that are relatively solid but are still edible and tasty. You will still get some sweet tastes. As the bananas ripen, the starchy carbs turn into the natural sugars.
Bananas are packed with nutrients. You will likely know all about the potassium, but did you know that bananas also contain vitamins B6 and C? Potassium is important for energy and the processing and removal of electrolytes from the body. This mineral will help to keep blood pressure low, helping to support the health of the heart and reduce the risk of stroke.
Vitamin B6 is essential for the digestive system. It works with other B vitamins to help turn the carbs, proteins, fats, and fiber into energy for the metabolism to use throughout the day. The vitamin C will support the immune system and health of the cells in the body.
Of course, there’s also the fiber to consider. This works with the starchy carbs to make sure the digestive system works effectively and breaks down the bananas slowly, avoiding the release of too many sugars into the bloodstream.
Try to get more unripe bananas not just for the starchy carbs. These bananas also have more pectin, which helps to encourage more good bacteria within the gut. The gut needs good bacteria to overpower the bad and encourage a healthy immune system.
Add More Blueberries Weekly
Blueberries are not the most affordable fruits out there, but they are excellent for the weekly shopping list. If you cannot afford them weekly, then opt for them on a monthly basis at least. The good news is you can stock up on frozen blueberries rather than fresh and still get all the benefits! This will keep your costs down and allow you to stock up monthly but eat weekly with ease!
Blueberries are known as a superfood for a good reason. The little fruits are packed with more antioxidants than almost any other fruit in existence! Mostly water, they are made up of 14.5% carbs, which puts them on the high carb list. Most low carb diets will recommend against them because of the natural sugars, but it does not make sense when you look at all the other benefits that the fruit offers.
The antioxidants in blueberries have been linked to anti-cancer benefits. Not only can they help prevent cancer from forming, but they have also shown some benefits in repairing the damage and reversing cancer. The antioxidants kick out the carcinogens from the body and help repair the damaged and abnormal cells.
On top of that, the fruit contains vitamins C and K and the mineral manganese. We have already seen the benefits of vitamin C, but what about vitamin K? This is one that the body needs to help with the natural clotting of blood. Without it, cuts would continue to bleed, and you are at a higher risk of internal bleeding.
As for manganese, this is an often-overlooked mineral. Manganese has two properties: to reduce inflammation and prevent osteoporosis. The latter is a disease of the bone that is common in older women. The bones cannot take in as much calcium, so they become brittle and more prone to damage. As for inflammation, this is linked to some health problems, including chronic pain and brain diseases.
Studies show that eating blueberries can help to improve the memory. This is not that surprising if they help to reduce inflammation within the brain and restore connections.
Blueberries are extremely easy to add to your diet. You can blend them with green vegetables to create a smoothie that isn’t as bitter or add them to your porridge oats!
Stock Up on More Grapefruits
Grapefruits are one of the lowest high carb foods on this list, coming in at just 9% carbs. However, they are one of the best fruits to eat on a daily basis.
Many people view grapefruits as having negative calories. That is not true, but it is easy to see where the idea comes from. It is very easy for the body to use up the calories that grapefruits offer, and the bittersweet fruit does contain fewer calories than most other fruits out there. Just half a grapefruit a day is considered good for those who want to lose weight.
However,it is not just those losing weight who benefit. Those with insulin resistance will also find a benefit. While grapefruits are full of natural sugars, they also full of fiber and water, along with many other compounds. The fruit can help to reduce the amount of sugar entering the bloodstream, preventing the need to release more insulin.
Studies have also shown benefits for those with kidney stones. The acids within grapefruits help to dissolve and prevent the kidney stones from occurring. Other studies show the antioxidants in grapefruits can also prevent colon cancer. This is partially also due to the fiber that prevents constipation and keeps the colon works.
Avoid drinking grapefruit juice. You will remove the pulp and the fiber, which will lead to the natural sugars getting into your bloodstream.
Do not Overlook the Beetroots
Finally, it is time to turn to the vegetables. You want to turn to those bright purple vegetables that are often blamed for staining clothes! Yes, we are talking about beetroots, also known as beets.
Whether you eat them raw or cooked, you will get about 10% carbs that are mostly sugar. Fibrous carbs are also found, which helps to prevent the sugaring of the blood. However,that is not all you gain.
The dark coloring is all thanks to certain antioxidants, which are also responsible for the dye of blueberries! These antioxidants help to prevent oxidative stress, reducing the risk of cancer, signs of aging, memory issues, and much more.
You will also get nitrates, which turn into nitric oxide when broken down in the body. This is not bad! Nitric oxide is needed to keep the blood pressure down, reducing your risk of heart disease, stroke, and much more. Most people do not even realize they have high blood pressure until they suffer a disease because of it!
If you are into much sport, you will want to consider beet juice. It improves the concentration of nitrates, which will help to boost your endurance and stamina while exercising. Mixed with some ingredients above afterward, you will improve during and after exercise performance.
What Will You Add to Your Weekly Shopping List First?
If you are not sure about adding these foods to your shopping list, start with them one at a time. It can be daunting making a significant change to the food you eat, especially if you are not used to eating high carb foods. Choose one or two and try them for a few weeks. Then you can add another and work your way up until all seven are on your weekly shopping list.
You will not regret eating these. They are not going to cause problems for your health. In fact, the nutrients within them protect you from all types of health problems!