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Sugar carbohydrates

Explain advantages of sugar carbohydrates?
(November 17, 2010)

Is sugar a carbohydrate

The use of sugar carbohydrates in our daily diet is increasingly coming into attack from medical practitioners. Consumption of excess carbohydrates in the form of sugars maybe the cause of high incidence of obesity, heart disease, and diabetes among individuals. Children are particularly vulnerable when they consume products high in sugar carbohydrate content such as soda pops, colas, and sweet baked goods.

Is sugar a carbohydrate? Before we understand the relation between sugar and carbohydrates, let us answer the basic question: Is sugar a carbohydrate?

Consider this: one serving (one teaspoon of sugar consists of five grams of carbohydrates). Carbohydrates in sugar may differ depending on the form of sugar consumed. One teaspoon of brown sugar consists of the same amount of carbohydrates as white sugar. However, the amount of carbohydrates increases as you consume concentrated forms of sugar such as sugar syrup, honey, molasses, high fructose corn syrup, or processed chocolate syrup.

So, does this mean that sugar carbohydrates are plain bad for us? Should you completely ban sugar from your diet?
Good versus bad sugar. Carbohydrates are one the three main food group varieties that are essential for our body’s nutrition and development. Carbohydrates replenish energy to our body and aid our growth process. The human body converts carbohydrates into simple sugars transported via the blood stream. The insulin produced by the pancreas helps the sugar move from the blood stream into the cells. The cells break down the sugar to create energy. Sugar carbohydrates come in two major forms:  simple carbohydrates and complex carbohydrates.

Simple carbohydrates commonly found in simple sugars, white or refined flour, and white rice break down easily and cause a sudden rise in sugar levels. This is what causes heart diseases and diabetes. However, remember that some fruits and dairy products also contain simple carbohydrates that are good for your body. Besides, they also contain nutritious fiber and vitamins. Another disadvantage of simple carbohydrates, especially in the form of baked goods and colas is that they do not fill you up.  Not only are you still hungry, simple carbohydrates from junk food are essentially empty calories. They do not provide you with any nutrients.

To avoid excessive consumption of simple sugars, start by avoiding snacks that do not provide you with essential nutrition. Instead, try to satisfy your hunger with low fat yogurt, nuts and seeds, and whole grain granola bars. Restrict the intake of added sugars in the form of desserts. Complex carbohydrates, on the other hand, take time to break down and are slowly absorbed into the blood stream. Whole grains, brown rice, wheat pasta, low fat diary, and carbohydrates found in vegetables and fruits are all examples of complex carbohydrates that are good for your health. Including more vegetables and fruits as part of your daily diet will provide you with the necessary amount of complex carbohydrates.  Experts recommend that at least fifty percent of your calories should come from carbohydrates.

When you check for carbohydrates on food labels determine the amount of total carbohydrates per serving. Also, check for dietary fiber and other essential nutrients. Learn to distinguish between natural sugars and added sugars. They do not list them separately on the food container. Watch out for labels that read added sugar or artificial sweeteners. Sweet enhancers like fructose, syrup, corn syrup, or molasses contain simple carbohydrates.

Work towards making sugars and carbohydrates part of a healthy diet. Regular exercise and a well-balanced diet will help to reduce the risk of diabetes and heart diseases. Stick to good carb choices and eliminate the need to add simple sugars to your diet.

Submitted by A V on November 17, 2010 at 03:10


Health Benefits of Sugar from Carbohydrates

Sugar is basically carbohydrates that consist of monosaccharide and disaccharides. It consists of sucrose, lactose and high fructose corn syrup. It also consists of glucose and galactose.Sucrose is a table sugar and is the common sugar which also consists of fructose that makes it sweet. Fructose is the sweetest and is also called as fruit sugar. Lactose is the milk sugar as it is present in milk.

Sugar is basically used as sweeteners in sweetmeats like cakes, candies, puddings; icecreams.Sweets cannot get its name until sugar is not added. It is essential for improving the palatability of the foods. Addition of sugar can improve the taste of the foods.

Caramelisation can be done with sugar where the sucrose is dry heated leading to golden brownish color. These can be useful for custards, confectionaries.

Sucrose is useful for yeast fermentation leading to formation of carbon dioxide gas and alcohol.Carbondioxide gas can be used as leavening agents in breads and baked goods. It is also useful in the preparation of wine and other breweries. It can help in preventing the growth of micro organisms in jams and jellies under the principle of osmosis. It can be useful as tenderizers. Sugar is needed to stabilize the egg foam.

Sugar can provide instant calories and energy to the body. One gram of carbohydrates is 4 calories. This is useful for providing energy to the people suffering from malnutrition. There is calorie shortage in deprived children. Children have liking towards sweet foods. Thus consumption of sugar to make up to 20% of the caloric requirement is not health hazard. However it can lead to dental caries.Dental caries are caused due to sugar consumed with frequency in between the meals and if it adheres to the teeth. If sugar is consumed as a part of meal it is less cariogenic.

However though it is useful commercially. Sugar intake needs to be consumed in fewer amounts in normal weight individuals as it can increase the susceptibility towards development of dental caries or diabetes or any other heart problems that can affect the life of the individuals. Thus those individuals with tendency to have more sweets can rely on sugar substitutes or artificial sweeteners which can provide the required sweetness and do not add calories to the diet. However these sweeteners need to be consumed under the prescription of the doctor.
Submitted by A M on April 18, 2008 at 10:45


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