Carbohydrates are chains of molecules your body breaks down into sugar during the digestive process. When people refer to a low-carb diet, they typically mean they are limiting the amount of simple carbohydrates or simple sugars they ingest.
A typical low-carb diet can include between 50 and 150 grams of carbohydrates daily, depending on your weight (the average diet includes several times more). The American Diabetes Association endorses a low-carb diet for people with diabetes who want to lose weight. Diabetic or not, you should avoid certain high-carb foods when you follow a low-carb diet.
Grains – bread, cereal products, pasta and rice – contain carbohydrates, but some are better than others in terms of a low-carb diet. Whole grains, including whole-grain pastas and breads and dark varieties of rice, contain fiber. Fiber is a type of carbohydrate but does not act in the same way as paler, “white” carbs that are more fully processed.
Fiber-rich carbs digest more slowly and can keep insulin levels stabilized. White breads and rice, as well as “regular” pasta that does not contain whole grains, are higher in simple carbohydrates, which may make them off-limits to those who have a 150-gram daily carb cap built into their diet.
Sweets – candies, cookies, cakes, soft drinks and other similar foods that contain a lot of sugar – are carbohydrates to avoid when you’re trying to limit your carbohydrate intake. These foods, also called monosaccharides or disaccharides, are simple sugars that provide a short burst of energy, but not a lasting sense of fullness.
Simple sugars give sweets their taste, but can cause your blood sugar to rise sharply, then come crashing down – a phenomenon that can leave you feeling fatigued and shaky. Carbohydrates in this category can also contain high levels of fat, which contribute to weight gain – not what many on low-carb diets are aiming for.
A low-carb diet focuses on lean proteins and fresh produce that do not cause a spike in insulin and blood glucose levels. Certain vegetables, including greens, cruciferous vegetables like cabbage, cauliflower and broccoli, beans and peppers, are nutritious additions to a low-carb diet. Vegetables to avoid are those known as starchy vegetables.
Starchy foods act like carbs during digestion – to digest starches, your body breaks them down into sugar.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s food pyramid categorizes potatoes, corn, green peas and lima beans as starchy vegetables.
If you are serious about weight loss, we strongly recommend the Manna Diet, which help you to steer away from refined carbohydrates and starchy vegetable. We also recommend taking the Manna Blood Sugar Support supplement with each meal to help control food cravings, “carb” cravings, and suppress appetite the natural way.