Nutrition: Carbohydrate love

Carbs aren’t the enemy!

By Alysse Anderegg, WAC Dietitian

Recently, carbs—the sugars, starches, and fibers found in many foods—have become the ultimate enemy. Yes, there is sugar in a lot of foods. And yes, I agree that it’s important to check labels and be cognizant of our food choices. But, the Atkins, paleo and keto diets criminalize carbs, leaving consumers confused and fearful to ever look at a doughnut again. Let me help you better understand. To start, it’s important to know that every single organ in our bodies is fueled by glucose, the simplest form of carbohydrate! Granted, not all carbs are created equal. Simple sugars like cookies, sodas, and other delicious desserts do not contribute much nutritional value. Those items should be limited. Complex carbs like whole grains, legumes, starchy vegtables, and fruit provide energy to our muscles and organs and offer fiber and unique micronutrients not found in fats or proteins. Finally, a lack of carbohydrates can result in impaired athletic and cognitive performance, micronutrient deficiencies, constipation, and intense food cravings. So please, eat your carbs! For more information, see this article from the June 2019 issue of Today’s Dietitian magazine.

Contact Alysse at aanderegg@wac.net or 206.839.4782.

—Posted September 11, 2019

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