Carbs Part II

on June 16, 2015

So now this is the part where everyone goes “what about fruit?” and “I thought whole grains were good”

There is a very scientific reason why whole grains and fruit are so good for you, even with a high carbohydrate content.  Its called FIBER!!!  So if we want to go chronologically, and you eat a candy bar, it has 25g (or so) of sugar and you now know exactly what happens to that.  And it happens in the liver.  And because 25g of sugar is a LOT of sugar to be circulating in your bloodstream (after being exported from the liver as glycogen to be used by various organs **sidenote** sugar and carbs are the most effective way to feed your brain because fats and amino acids cannot pass through the blood-brain barrier), your body has conveniently created a pancreas.  If you aren’t a science person, you never think about your pancreas, but its kind of the real MVP of the body because it keeps you from dying or going into a coma from high blood sugar every time you eat.  It releases insulin, which was super awesome for our cavemen ancestors because when they got a meal, insulin made sure that what they ate got stored to be used in a famine.  Nowadays, insulin just insures that any and all stuff we eat, gets stored as fat.

So why is fiber so great?  well it SLOOOOWWWS the digestion of your food (it also cleans out your colon which is chalk-full of all the toxins we eat, so make all the poop jokes you want about fiber, but fiber is a friend AND a food!!)  So when your digestion slows down, it keeps your blood sugar from spiking, keeping insulin from triggering the storage of all the sugars you eat.

Great anatomy/biochemistry lesson right?

Now for a bit of botany and a word on whole grains like brown rice.  The endosperm layer of rice is the white part. It is full of Cs Hs and Os!  Very carby in the endosperm.  So if that’s all you eat (AKA white rice, refined flour etc.), enjoy your sugar-turned-fat.  BUT when rice has the bran and germ layer coupled with that endosperm, it is FULL of fiber which is exactly what we just talked about.  So yeah, whole grains are SUPER good, but you still can’t over-eat them because unused glycogen still gets stored as fat.  And those lucky charms with whole grains?  Yeah, it makes no difference- because the sugar in that cereal STILL sends your blood sugar sky-high, and you secrete insulin and store the sugar as fat.


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