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List of Bad CarbsCarbohydrates have been demonized, especially in America, as a great big no-no if you’re trying to lose weight. But the story isn’t quite that simple. There are carbohydrates that are good for you, and actually help you to lose weight and maintain a healthy metabolism. In fact, it’s impossible to survive without some carbohydrates, because they are the sugars which our body uses for all of its energy. We can get this energy from proteins, but it’s a much more difficult process for your body to break proteins down into the simple sugars it can actually use. Carbohydrates, on the other hand, provide a ready source of usable energy. It’s just how readily usable that energy is that makes a carb ‘good’ or ‘bad’. Good carbs release their energy slowly, giving you sustained energy throughout the day. Bad carbs give you a shot of energy that makes you hyperactive, makes it hard to concentrate, and inevitably results in a sugar crash that will leave you irritable, tired, and wanting to eat everything that isn’t nailed down.
What Makes a Bad Carb?Bad carbs are typically those carbohydrates that have been heavily processed. They have been refined, preserved and flavoured to make them more attractive to consumers. They make you feel good for half an hour, and they taste good – but the long and short term effects they will have on your weight and your health hardly make the trade-off worth it. The saying, ‘a moment on the lips, a lifetime on the hips’ was written about bad carbs.
So what kinds of foods would go into a list of bard carbs? Well, it’s difficult to list everything that you could call a bad carb, but the general rule is that if it’s white and wrapped in plastic, it’s probably a bad carb. Here’s a list of bad carbs to use as a guideline.
- White bread (the number one bogeyman!)
- Potatoes (especially fried because of the added fat and cholesterol)
- White flour pasta (as opposed to whole wheat pasta)
- White rice
- Burger buns
- Tortillas and wraps (unless made with whole wheat flour)
- Breadcrumbs on fried chicken
- Bread sticks
- Cookies and biscuits, unless they’re whole wheat digestives
- Pizza dough