10 Healthy Carb Foods

By james
Reviewed: Dr. Gromatzky
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Medical Expert Medical Expert

Carbohydrates have gained a bad reputation in healthy living circles lately. These energy providing compounds are largely responsible for excess weight gain, at least in people that don’t eat them in moderation. Sugars, in particular, are guilty, but sugars are available even in healthy, natural foods such as fruits and vegetables.

The good news is, though, that carbohydrates are not unhealthy in themselves. In fact, they are very important to us. It is just a matter of maintaining a balanced diet. Plenty of foods that are high in carbs are very healthy for us indeed, and here’s a look at some of the healthiest of all.

Healthy Carbs

Healthy Carb Food #1: Bananas

Bananas are, for most people, delicious. They are among the most commonly consumed fruit on the planet and can be eaten raw or used in cooking. They are also packed with vitamins and minerals that help keep us healthy. In addition, they are a great source of potassium and are comprised of 93% carbs.

Bananas are thought to be able to improve the health of our hearts and to lower blood pressure. They are also an excellent source of healthy energy, making them ideal for use in breakfasts. Unripe bananas also contain compounds that are prebiotic, helping to maintain a healthy digestive system.

Healthy Carbs

Healthy Carb Food #2: Apples

There is a well known saying that an apple a day keeps the doctor away. The saying is used for a very good reason as apples are very healthy indeed, helping to prevent sickness. Apples are a good source of vitamin c, which helps boost our immune system, as well as a range of other vitamins and minerals.

A medium sized apple contains around 25g of carbs and makes up 96% of the macronutrients within the fruit. This carb content helps to provide us with an energy boost. This makes them ideal snacks that help us to last until our next meal. They also contain antioxidants and have been shown to help maintain a healthy blood sugar level. It is also thought that apples may be able to help prevent cancer.

Healthy Carbs

Healthy Carb Food #3: Oats

Oats tend to be found on breakfast menus, but that isn’t the only time they can be enjoyed. They are used in a variety of ways in cooking and are very nutritious indeed. Oats are a very popular food for people trying to lose weight because they are low in calories and also very filling, discouraging people from eating more.

Around 27g of carbs are in a 40g serving of oats. In terms of macronutrients, carbs make up close to 70% of this serving of oats. Oats have a high fiber content which helps to promote a healthy digestive system. Another benefit of oats is that they are relatively high in protein for a grain, which is useful for vegetarians and vegans.

Healthy Carbs

Healthy Carb Food #4: Oranges

Whenever we get a cold, one of the first things we are likely to do is to stock up on fresh orange juice. This is because oranges are known for their particularly high vitamin c content, which helps to bolster our immune system. This helps our bodies fight against the pathogen, meaning we are likely to recover sooner than otherwise.

A single medium orange contains 15.4g of carbs with carbs making up 91% of the macronutrients which helps to energise us in between meals. They are also thought to be able to reduce the risk of heart disease and can also increase the amount of iron we absorb from our diets.

Healthy Carbs

Healthy Carb Food #5: Whole-Wheat Bread

Bread is eaten in many forms around the world and is an essential part of many peoples’ diets. It is an excellent source of fibre as well as vitamins and minerals. It is also a very convenient food and ideal for people that are in a hurry or those that want to make some delicious and healthy sandwiches for later. Bread is also a very good source of carbohydrates.

Some breads are better than others, though, and whole-wheat bread is among the best there is. Whole-wheat bread has not been heavily refined meaning it retains a lot of its nutrition. Depending on who you are asking, whole-wheat bread is also the tastiest variety of bread available.

Healthy Carbs

Healthy Carb Food #6: Quinoa

Quinoa has seen a surge in popularity in healthy eating circles in recent years, and for very good reasons. It is packed full of nutrition, particularly protein and fibre, and is also gluten-free which makes it a godsend to people that are gluten intolerant. A single cup serving of quinoa contains 39g of carbs with carbs making up 70% of the macronutrients.

As well as being packed with nutrients, quinoa is very filling, which is great for people that are trying to lose weight because it reduces the calories they take on. It is also thought to be able to improve blood sugar levels. It is available in a few varieties and can be used in a variety of dishes.

Healthy Carbs

Healthy Carb Food #7: Potatoes

Potato is a staple food in many parts of the world. It can be cooked in a number of ways and used in meals and snacks. It is also packed full of vitamins and minerals, has a very low fat content and their skins are an excellent source of potassium and fibre. 1 medium sized potato has around 26g of carbs and is 88% carbohydrates.

While potatoes in themselves are not unhealthy, they do get to be cooked in ways that make them so. Chips and fries, in particular, tend to be high in fats and should be eaten in moderation. Potato-based snacks also tend to be highly processed and low in nutritional value. Something like a baked potato, however, is tasty, nutritious and healthy.

Healthy Carbs

Healthy Carb Food #8: Whole-Wheat Pasta

Pasta is a wonderfully versatile food that makes the bulk of many of the planet’s favourite dishes. From carbonara to lasagne, pasta dishes are served up at tables in the home, to five-star restaurants. It is also packed with fibre and other vitamins and minerals and has a high carbohydrate content.

For an even healthier option, whole-wheat pasta is best. Remember, though, that even though whole-wheat pasta is healthy in itself, the sauces you use might not be. Try to stick with fresh ingredients and make the sauces from scratch for a meal that is healthy as well as delicious.

Healthy Carbs

Healthy Carb Food #9: Sweet Potatoes

Also known as yams, sweet potatoes are not closely related to standard potatoes. Regardless, they are still a healthy and versatile food. They have a high fibre content and are rich in vitamins A and C, and also potassium. They are also high in antioxidants. Sweet potatoes have a carb content of about 93%.

Sweet potatoes take a long time to digest. This means that you feel full for longer, which is ideal for people that are on low-calorie diets to lose weight. They also contain compounds that help maintain a healthy blood sugar level, and also help prevent excess calories from being turned into fat.

Healthy Carbs

Healthy Carb Food #10: Legumes

Legumes are the family of beans and peas. There is a wide variety of them, and they tend to be very healthy. Legumes such as kidney beans are high in fibre, protein and other vitamins and minerals. Legumes also tend to be high in carbohydrate content, which will vary according to the specific type. Chickpeas are another popular legume that has a high carb content, as well as being very nutritious.

Legumes can form a part of a main meal as an accompaniment and can also be used in cooking recipes. They are also thought to offer a range of health benefits such as maintaining a healthy blood-sugar level and might even help prevent cancer.

Healthy Carbs

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