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The "C" Word

Why the word carbohydrate should be a part of your vocabulary!

Yep. I’m going to say it and you cannot stop me. Turn away now. Cover your children’s ears.

CARBOHYDRATES

For those of you still reading that haven’t run screaming from the room, I’m here to tell you that they aren’t the enemy.

NOPE.

YOU CAN EAT BREAD.

Yes, you heard it. You can eat bread and rice and noodles. Our ancestors have had diets rich in grains for thousands of years. In fact they are central to many cultures around the world. The Asian have rices, Italy has pasta and bread, and the British Isles have oats. There are many other grains, that are not so familiar to the SAD (standard American Diet-although SAD is an appropriate term!) Grains such as sorghum, millet, teff and quinoa, which are staples in some countries, are slowly gaining popularity here.

The grains we as Americans, are used to are wheat and corn. Yes, in their natural state, they can be considered “whole,” but unfortunately, they are usually over processed. The white breads, white noodles and white rice that adorn the shelves of your local grocery store have all been stripped of their nutritional value and really become little more than sugar in our bodies, once consumed.

 Which brings me to my point. Yes, you can eat bread, rice, pasta and more, just choose a whole version.  The benefits of eating whole grains are lower cholesterol, higher fiber intake which helps you stay fuller longer, and more nutrients, such as B vitamins. Finely ground grain, or processed (the white stuff) is more rapidly digested, and in turn, has a greater impact on blood sugar than grain that is more coarsely ground or intact(whole or unprocessed-more likely to be brown or even a pretty red or black!) For example choose steel cut oats instead of instant oats-they are right next to the boxes of oatmeal on the shelves.(You may have to literally look high or low-healthy stuff tends to be out of the line of sight.)

 And PLEASE read whole grain breakfast cereal labels carefully—some are too high in sugar! I know some of you reading this have children and they will only consume cereal in the morning. Make it a point to read your labels. Even if it says whole grain, check the sugar content and the additives. You are better off spending a few cents more on an organic version of “PB Cruncher-whatever.” It may not have the cool toy, but it is much better for the kiddos.

Anyway, I digress. Please do not look at carbs as an enemy. They aren’t.  Just choose wisely. There are tons and tons of options out there. Do not be afraid to experiment with something new. It may just become a favorite.

Here is a great recipe to try for the upcoming holiday meals we will all be cooking. Give it a go and let me know how you did!

 

 

 

 

 

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