Get rid of excess pounds: The type of carbohydrates is decisive
Low carb diets are trending. You should be able to lose weight particularly effectively, after all, carbohydrates are considered fattening agents. But that's not entirely true: the decisive factor is not the amount of carbohydrates that you consume, but the type. Experts explain how to differentiate good carbohydrates from bad ones.
Lose weight with fewer carbohydrates
For years there has been a debate about whether less fat or less carbohydrates are better suited to getting rid of excess pounds. Various scientific studies have shown that low-carb does better than low-fat. However, if such a diet is too extreme, it can be dangerous. Because the absence of carbohydrates can even affect life expectancy. In addition, studies show that it is not the amount that matters, it is the type of carbohydrates that matters.
It depends on the type of sugar molecules
Carbohydrates are part of a balanced diet. The German Nutrition Society (DGE) writes: “Fats and carbohydrates play the most important role in covering energy needs. A whole food mix should contain limited amounts of fat and more than 50% of your energy intake in the form of carbohydrates. ”
So you shouldn't completely do without carbohydrates. What is not immediately clear to many: Not only bread, pasta and rice contain carbohydrates, but also many other foods such as fruits, dairy products or vegetables.
And a lot of it is contained in sweets and lemonades. Carbohydrates are nothing more than sugar molecules.
Experts differentiate carbohydrates according to the type of sugar molecules that make them up: the longer the molecular chain, the more complex the carbohydrates.
Slower rise in blood sugar levels
Grape and fruit sugar consist of only one, milk and cane sugar from two sugar molecules. The starch or cellulose found in plant foods, on the other hand, are so-called multiple sugars due to the long sugar chains.
They are healthier for the body than simple carbohydrates, as explained in a message from the dpa news agency.
Because: "The longer the chain of sugar molecules, the longer it takes the body to break them down and take them into the bloodstream," says Stefan Kabisch, a study doctor at the German Institute for Nutritional Research (DIfE), according to dpa.
This has several advantages. Whole grain products, for example, cause blood sugar to rise more slowly than a candy bar. Food cravings are prevented because insulin also affects the feeling of fullness.
Appetizing for a candy that causes blood sugar levels to skyrocket is quicker than for wholemeal bread - even though it consumes the same amount of calories.
The independent economist Gunda Backes explains, according to dpa: "In connection with short-chain sugars, we sometimes speak of empty carbohydrates."
Carbohydrates from vegetables, fruits and whole grains
Another advantage: whole grains, vegetables and fruit contain fiber, which among other things stimulates digestion.
And: "They not only support bowel function, they also lower the risk of colon cancer, high blood pressure or pathological overweight," explains Prof. Hans Hauner from the Else Kröner-Fresenius Center for Nutritional Medicine at the TU Munich in the agency report.
Carbohydrates from vegetables, fruits and whole grains are therefore the "better" carbohydrates that should be integrated into our menu. According to Hauner, it is not in the sense of a balanced diet to completely forego certain food groups.
"In nutritional medicine, we have struggled to tell people what and how much to eat," said the expert.
Nevertheless, there are a few basic rules: You can consume as much as you want with vegetables and fruit, whole grain products should be better chosen for cereals such as bread and pasta. Eat sweets sparingly and preferably do not drink sweetened drinks at all.
Gunda Backes has another piece of advice: "Those who mainly prepare their own food freshly avoid unnecessary sugar in finished products". Homemade food tastes best anyway. (ad)