An optimal diet should be one in which 55% of total energy comes from complex, low-glycaemic carbohydrates such as whole grains, legumes, vegetables and fruits.
According to the Diabetes Association of Canada, the daily intake of calories from carbohydrates should be between 45% and 60%. Several studies have also suggested that diets with carbohydrates from natural sources, compared to high-fat diets, reduce the tendency to become obese.
Why are carbohydrates said to be unhealthy?
This common saying is associated with the fact that simple carbohydrates are generally added in large amounts to processed products. Because of this, many industrialized foods can raise blood sugar or bring about health problems. The following are some examples:
- Soft drinks and soda.
- Breakfast cereals, ice cream, chocolates, jams and pastries in general.
- Desserts and dairy products, such as custards and sweetened yoghurts.
- Elaborated acid and salty products, such as dressings.
What should be clear about carbohydrates?
Carbohydrates are the main source of energy for the body and have very important functions. However, it is important to choose complex carbohydrates over simple ones. The latter are not recommended and are linked to health problems.