6. Sugar Levels and Insulin
Your bloodstream absorbs the sugars your body manufactures from carbohydrates. Then, it can carry those sugars where they are needed so you can use them as energy. Excess amounts of sugar, however, signal your body to release insulin. Insulin, in turn, causes your body to store excess sugar as fat. Both simple and complex carbohydrates increase your blood sugar levels and can lead to weight gain. However, complex carbs have the benefit of not only nutrients but also fiber. Your body takes longer to digest fiber, which helps keep you feeling full longer. Feeling full can help prevent moodiness and overeating.
5. Glycemic Index
In addition to categorizing foods as simple or complex carbohydrates, scientists can also classify them based on something called a glycemic index. The glycemic index ranks foods based on how quickly they raise a person’s blood sugar levels after a meal. According to Harvard Health, low-glycemic foods have a rating of 55 or less out of 100. Examples are whole grain oats, apples, and kidney beans. Medium-glycemic foods have a ranking of 56 to 69. These include foods like boiled brown rice, pineapple, and boiled sweet potatoes. High-glycemic foods include white wheat bread, cornflakes, and instant mashed potatoes.
4. Eating to Prevent Belly Fat
You can provide your body with the nutrients it needs for a healthy brain, strong muscles, and healthy heart while preventing fat from gathering around your middle. Choose wholesome foods that are rich in vitamins and minerals to keep your cells and tissues strong. When choosing carbohydrates, select the complex carbohydrates that will provide both nutrition and the fiber that will keep you from quickly growing hungry. Provide your body with lean proteins, leafy greens, fresh fruits, whole grains, and fiber-rich cruciferous veggies like broccoli and Brussels sprouts.