Health Benefits of Complex Carbs
Carbs are not essential for life, but eating the right kind may benefit your health.
Complex Carbs Are Less Likely to Cause Blood Sugar Spikes
Simple carbs are digested very quickly, which causes a spike in your blood sugar.
The blood sugar spike stimulates your pancreas to release a large dose of insulin, which often leads to a blood sugar “crash,” leaving you hungry and craving more sugar.
Fiber-rich, complex carbs take much longer to break down than simple carbs. This helps keep blood sugar levels steady, as sugar reaches the blood stream gradually.
Because complex carbs are digested more slowly, they provide sustained energy and help you feel full for longer.
Complex Carbs May Reduce Your Risk of Some Chronic Diseases
Consuming complex carbs may help lower your risk of chronic diseases, such as diabetes and heart disease.
They tend to be high in dietary fiber, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and plant compounds. All of these components play a role in disease prevention.
Furthermore, studies have found that eating whole foods high in dietary fiber may lower “bad” LDL cholesterol and blood sugar levels, as well as help raise “good” HDL cholesterol.
Complex Carbs Promote a Healthier Digestive System
There are billions of “good” bacteria lining your intestines. They’re known as your gut microbiota.
They play a role in managing several digestive disorders and have been linked to various other aspects of health.
Soluble fibers found in complex carbs feed the beneficial bacteria and increase their presence in your gut. They also help the bacteria produce nutrients, such as short-chain fatty acids, which are beneficial for digestive health.
Complex Carbs May Reduce Inflammation
Inflammation is the body’s natural response to infection or injury. However, long-term inflammation can increase the risk of several chronic diseases.
While sugary foods and refined flours promote inflammation, complex carbs help reduce inflammation.
Single-ingredient whole grains, fruits, vegetables and legumes contain fiber and plant compounds that have anti-inflammatory properties