What Grade of Fuel are You Using?
Food like fuel comes in different grades. Regular is usually the lowest priced and therefore the most purchased, while super premium is more expensive and the least bought. Cheaper foods such as prepackaged meals, fast food, and most snacks are high in sodium and fat and low in nutrients or fuel. More expensive foods like fresh produce, ingredients to make food from scratch and packaged foods that are fresh, not preserved are more difficult to acquire. Higher grade fuel keeps our bodies running smoothly for a longer time.
The Great Debate: Low Carb. No carb. Lots of carbs. High protein. Low protein. No dairy. Dairy is great and necessary. With so many choices who knows what’s right or wrong. Some diets encourage the development of diabetes and other health conditions due to the restrictive nature of the plan. Others are so complex and call for such exotic ingredients following them is impossible. Simple seems to be best. How does different food affect our bodies? Let’s find out.
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Carbohydrates: Who doesn’t love carbs?! Pasta and bread and sweets! Oh My! Carbohydrates turn to glucose in our bodies and give us that burst of energy. A sugar high. Unfortunately, it doesn’t last, and it spikes our blood sugar which for us diabetics that means more damage to our kidneys, hearts, eyes and circulatory systems in general. Simple carbs are easily broken down once consumed and create the sugar high. Complex carbs take longer to break down in the body, so the immediate release of sugar doesn’t occur. Fruits are a gray area. Apples are great and are a complex carb in the natural form; while as apple juice they become a simple carb. Knowing your carbs is the first step to understanding how they fit into the DASH diet.
Type of Carb Example
Simple Soda and other sugar-sweetened beverages, candy, cookies, pastries, ice cream, foods made with white flour and white rice. Energy drinks
Complex Whole grain bread and pasta, brown rice, nuts, quinoa, vegetables, and fruit.
Could be both Fruit and vegetable juices or purees. Complex carbohydrates that have been reduced to a simpler form or have been processed or sweetened.
Fats: Dietary fat comes in many forms. Good fat, bad fat and really bad fat. Good fats (Unsaturated) are those found in olive oil, nuts, and fish. The bad fats (Saturated) are found in animal products and certain oils. Scientists have recently discovered that trans fat is the most dangerous type of fat. The key to finding it on your labels is “partially hydrogenated.” Unfortunately, most of us don’t get enough of the good guys and too much of the bad guys. Let’s look at the different types and how we can incorporate them into our diets.
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