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Carbohydrate Chart

Carbohydrates form a very important part of our diet as they provide us with the energy we require on a daily basis. The general recommendation is that we should get approximately half of our entire calorie requirement from carbohydrates. However carbohydrates are divided into two types- simple carbohydrates and complex carbohydrates. Cakes and fruits are both examples of foods that contain simple carbohydrates, but the processed sugars like the ones in pastries and candy are unhealthy, the sugars that are contained in fruits are considered to be healthy. It is very important to understand the distinction between natural simple carbohydrates and processed carbohydrates.

Foods that contain large amounts of processed carbohydrates have a substantially higher calorific value. These high calorie foods cause the body to release certain hormones into our bloodstream which create a “feel good” sensation. However, as the level of hormones begins to normalize, we start craving these foods once more. This reaction has been compared to a cocaine “high” and abstaining from these foods can actually cause a person to “crash” in the same way as an addict. It is precisely this response that has been responsible for the term “junk food addiction”. A carbohydrate chart is a useful tool to keep a track of carbohydrate consumption. 

A carbohydrate chart or a carb counting chart as it is more commonly known, is the perfect way to track the carbohydrates one consumes. This chart can be used both to determine the foods you should eat as well as to determine the carbohydrate content of your actual meals. This will allow you to plan your meals carefully and ensure that you are getting the rich amount of healthy carbohydrates. A carbohydrate table that displays the carbohydrate content as well as the type of carbohydrates in a particular food can be helpful in determining your diet. Whole grains and vegetables are good sources of healthy complex carbohydrates and should be included in a regular diet plan. One of the simplest ways to include wholegrain products in your meals is to substitute your current processed white flour products with whole grain products. This would mean that instead of having white bread, you have wholegrain bread and the same would go for rice and pasta. To include more vegetables in your diet plan, you can simply add a large serving of salad to your meals. In addition to being good sources of healthy carbohydrates, these foods also provide your body with phytonutrients, mineral, and vitamins. Include berries and yogurt in a carbohydrate counter chart as they are excellent sources of healthy carbohydrates.

Carbohydrates are a good source of energy and should not be eliminated from a diet. There are several fad diets these days that recommended an unhealthy restriction on carbohydrates. These diet plans are often not very successful in helping an individual lose weight and in the few cases where weight loss occurs, it is often because of reduced meal portions. A healthy diet plan that has a slightly reduced calorific intake is advisable as this will help the individual consume fewer calories than their requirements. This difference should be very slight and if it is too great a difference, it can compromise the individual’s health. A calorie chart would therefore be a better weight loss tool as compared to a carbohydrate chart as it will help to determine your daily calorific intake. Make sure that you include plenty of salads and fruits as this will be a simple way to cut down on your calorie intake. Fruits and vegetables are low calorie foods that contain high amounts of fiber and fluid. This will help to keep you satiated for longer periods.


Carb Counting Chart

Carbohydrates are often targeted by weight loss programs but not all carbohydrates are bad for you. Carbohydrates are known to be the primary source of energy for the body to enable it to perform various bodily functions. Typically, during the process of digestion, the simple carbohydrates or sugar as well as the complex carbohydrates or starches get broken down into glucose or blood sugar. Hence many people are keen on following a calories and carb chart because if one consumes too many carbohydrates at any given time then their blood sugar levels may go up significantly which in turn may give rise to various medical conditions.

You can follow a carb counting chart that is easily available online or from your doctor so as to control your blood sugar levels. A typical carbohydrate counting chart will show how many carbohydrates are present in a single serving of various carbohydrate rich foods. Although carbohydrates are present in a variety of foods, a carbohydrates table will always indicate that the healthiest sources of carbohydrates are vegetables, whole grains, fruits, low fat dairy products and legumes. This means that if you wish to reduce your carbohydrate intake, you should still include these foods in your diet. While referring to a carb counting table one should keep in mind that there are certain foods that are entirely composed of carbohydrates such as lollipops and sugar and hence their total weight will be equal to the number of carbohydrates that they are made of.

A diabetic carb counting chart or a regular food carb chart is used in case of most foods that only have part of their composition comprising of carbohydrates. Besides using carb counting charts one may also refer to food labels, different types of software, or reference books that provide details on the carbohydrate content in certain foods. To refer to a carb counting chart accurately one should also make use of certain measuring and weighing equipment such as measuring cups and spoons. It is essential for those suffering from diabetes to refer to a diabetic carb counting chart as they need to be aware of the composition of the foods they consume and the affect these foods will have on their blood sugar levels. It is always beneficial for diabetics to ensure that they refer to a carb counting chart so as to maintain healthy levels of blood sugar. The carb counting chart allows an individual to consume carbohydrates as per their specific calorie needs. The calorie and carbohydrate requirement may be higher for those individuals who are relatively more active as the carbohydrates provide them with energy that acts as fuel to enable working of their muscles. Once an individual is aware of the amount of carbohydrates that are required then they can accordingly develop a meal plan by using carb counting chart. Typically on an average, most adults are known to require around 45gms to 60gms of carbohydrates per meal. It is always advisable to consult a certified diabetes educator or a registered dietician to know the exact carbohydrate and calorie needs of an individual. A diet to reduce uric acid is typically required in lowering the levels of uric acid in the body which will otherwise give rise to painful medical conditions such as gout.  This diet will typically involve the reduction or the elimination of foods from one’s diet that are known to have high levels of purines. In many ways a diet to reduce uric acid is also known to help those suffering from gout to lose weight which further helps in lowering the concentration of uric acid in the blood. Typically, uric acid is eliminated from the body of an individual via both their kidneys and sometimes even a person actually having high levels of uric acid may never develop gout, Gout is known to develop in those individual who are known to be highly sensitive to high levels of uric acid. This excessive uric acid is then known to solidify and form crystals that get deposited in the joints resulting in highly painful symptoms of gout. Some of the commonly known foods that should be excluded from a diet to reduce uric acid include various animal meats such as pork, seafood and even beef. Red meats are known to be more harmful that white meats such as fish and poultry which are known to have a lesser purine content. Similarly, a diet to reduce uric acid in a particular individual should also not include breads that contain yeast as well as alcohol as they are known to be very high in uric acid. Those with food allergies may need to consult a dietician to make modifications to a diet plan that contains foods they are allergic to.

A carb counting chart will also include foods that are natural source if carbohydrates such as cereals, rice, breads, pastas as well as fruits that are known to contain natural sugars in the form of fructose and glucose. Some of the other rich sources of carbohydrates also include starchy vegetables such as peas, potatoes and corn. In fact legumes such as lentils and beans are known to be rich in both carbohydrates as well as in proteins and hence should be considered while referring to a carbohydrate counting chart. In order to refer to carb counting charts correctly one should also become well acquainted with serving sizes. This is essential because only after understanding the serving sizes as well the food sources of carbohydrates one will be able to monitor their carbohydrates intake and also add some variety to their meal plan. Very often, people who are keen on monitoring their blood sugar levels especially diabetics are under the misconception that only the sugar present in the food is responsible for an increase in their blood sugar levels. However this is just partially true because starches present in food also get converted into glucose and sugar and then get transported to the blood. Hence even foods that are marked “sugar free” or “no sugar added” should also be considered while referring to a carb counting chart as the food may contain carbohydrates which will affect the blood sugar levels. Those individuals who are suffering from diabetes or are at a higher risk of diabetes on account of family history should ideally refer to a carb counting chart to allow for more flexibility while planning their meals and also monitor their blood sugar levels.

Submitted on January 16, 2014