Refined Carbs and Sugar: The Diet Saboteurs


Sugars and refined grains that have been stripped of all bran, fiber, and nutrients, such as white bread, pizza dough, pasta, pastries, white flour, white rice, sweet desserts, and many breakfast cereals, are examples of bad or simple carbs. They digest quickly and have a high glycemic index, which produces dangerous blood sugar increases. They can also cause mood and energy swings, as well as fat accumulation, particularly around the midsection.

When you consume refined or simple carbohydrates, your bloodstream is saturated with sugar, causing an insulin surge to eliminate the sugar from your system. All of this insulin might make you hungry immediately after a meal, leading to a need for more sugary carbs. This can lead to overeating, weight gain, and eventually insulin resistance, and type 2 diabetes. High-refined-carbohydrate and sugar-rich diets have also been related to high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity, hyperactivity, mood disorders, and even teen suicide.

Why is cutting down on sugar and refined carbs so difficult?

Cutting back on sweet foods and conquering carb cravings can be a difficult chore for many of us. Sugar is buried in most of the processed food we eat, from soda, coffee, and fruit drinks to bread, pasta sauce, and frozen dinners, in addition to apparent foods like sugary snacks, desserts, and candies. However, cutting back on these diet saboteurs doesn’t mean you’ll be left hungry or that you’ll never enjoy comfort food again. The secret is to eat the proper carbohydrates. Complex, unprocessed, or “healthy” carbs like vegetables, whole grains, and naturally sweet fruit break down more slowly, resulting in better blood sugar control and less fat storage.


You may minimize your sugar and simple carb intake while still maintaining a healthy weight and satisfying your sweet appetite by focusing on whole foods and complex, unprocessed carbs. Not only will you feel better and more energetic, but you may also be able to lose that persistent belly fat that so many of us have.

Sugar and belly fat have a sour relationship.
The abdominal organs and liver are surrounded by a lot of belly fat, which is connected to insulin resistance and an increased risk of diabetes. Calories from fructose (found in sugary beverages like soda, energy and sports drinks, coffee drinks, and processed meals like doughnuts, muffins, cereal, candies, and granola bars) are more likely to cause belly fat gain. Cutting back on sugary meals can help you lose weight and reduce your risk of diabetes.

Good carbs vs. bad carbs

Carbohydrates are one of your body’s primary energy sources. Carbohydrates should account for 45 to 65 percent of your daily calories, according to health groups like the US Department of Health and Human Services. However, rather than refined carbs, the majority of these should come from complex, unrefined carbs (including starches such as potatoes and corn).

Complex carbohydrates, unlike simple carbs, are absorbed slowly, generating a gradual rise in blood sugar. They’re usually abundant in nutrients and fiber, which can help you avoid serious sickness, lose weight, and have m ore energy. In general, “healthy” carbs have a lower glycemic load and may even help prevent type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.


Good carbs include:

Unrefined whole grains: whole wheat or multigrain bread, brown rice, barley, quinoa, bran cereal, oatmeal.

Non-starchy vegetables: spinach, green beans, Brussels sprouts, celery, tomatoes.

Legumes: kidney beans, baked beans, peas, lentils.

Nuts: Peanuts, cashews, walnuts.

Fruit: apples, berries, citrus fruit, bananas, pears.

What is the difference between a glycemic index and a glycemic load?
The glycemic index (GI) determines how quickly a food raises your blood sugar, whereas the glycemic load determines how much digestible carbohydrate (total carbohydrate minus fibre) is in the food. While both can be important tools, having to refer to multiple tables can be inconvenient. Most individuals find it simplest to conform to the basic principles of what makes a carb “good” or “bad” unless they’re on a special diet.

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