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10 Low Glycemic Carbohydrates that will aid in weight loss

Updated on April 22, 2017

Good Carbs versus Bad Carbs

The Overweight Epidemic

One of the problems in today's society is we have a tendency to want to candy coat things and paint a prettier picture for something that is simply ugly. Instead of resolving issues, we apply band aids and just put a label on it. Everything is about money. The health and fitness world is no different. Obesity is now considered a disease. Of course when there's a label on something, it brings a lot of profit potential with it. Many companies have reaped massive profits on this obesity epidemic. Seems as if more "quick fixes" are popping up on a daily basis. I'm not implying that products such as Skinny body, Body by Vi, or the wraps that take off inches are not effective, however their marketing scheme of "one size fits all" and it works for everyone is very misleading and gives many people false hope. There is no such thing as one size fits all, if that was the case, no one would be overweight. There are some good, effective products that will assist you in losing and managing your weight loss efforts, but just remember, it's a process that will take some time. It's not going to happen in 60 or 90 days as some of these products suggest. Especially if your obese. The best product that you can buy, is belief in yourself. Once you put your mind to what you want to do, and believe in it 100% and not just posting empty fitness slogans on Facebook, nothing will stop you from reaching your goal. Some people are under the impression that if they go to the gym frequently, they can still continue with their bad eating habits. For some individuals this might be true, of course they will more than likely have to deal with other health concerns like high cholesterol, high blood pressure, etc, but that's a whole other story altogether. Your daily diet is 80% of being healthy, regardless of how often you attend the gym. For those of you that have trouble controlling your weight, even more so.

Manipulating your carbohydrate intake is going to play a major factor in losing weight. If you already have weight problems, consuming simple carbohydrates isn't going to help. Simple carbs are easily broken down by the body and quickly converted into fat and drastically raise blood glucose levels if not used immediately. Some carbohydrates high on the glycemic index (90 or above) can increase blood sugar as if you you were eating pure glucose (sugar). Definitely not a good thing if you suffer from Diabetes or Hypoglycemia. Complex carbohydrates, that are low on the glycemic index contain more fibers that make them harder for our bodies to break down,they will stay in the body longer, providing you with more sustainable energy and aid in controlling blood sugar levels. This is a list of some of the better carbohydrates that you should have on your grocery list to assist in your weight loss quest and for overall health.

Cooked Brown Rice

Brown Rice

Not only will a diet filled with whole grains like brown rice aid in maintaining a healthy body weight, but there are many other health benefits to consuming it on a regular basis and rice is extremely versatile and will pretty much go with anything. Brown rice comes with an abundance of magnesium (which is essential for bone health), phytonutrients (plant compounds that have anti-inflammatory properties that act as antioxidants), the oils in brown rice have consistently shown to lower LDL (bad cholesterol) and raise HDL (the good cholesterol), and the plethora of manganese and selenium are majors factors in combating the free radicals in the body.Selenium also plays a part in managing the thyroid hormone metabolism and immune system function. Containing approximately 15% of the daily recommended amount of fiber, brown rice augments the digestive system, keeping every thing flowing briskly, protects against colon and breast cancer and improves cardiovascular health. Research has also shown that brown rice decreases the risk of developing metabolic syndrome. Metabolic syndrome is a variety of factors that associated with the increased risk of heart disease and type II diabetes. Who said eating healthy had to taste bad? Whole grains should be a part of everyone's diet, when choosing a whole grain or rice, go with the brown over white, your body will thank you for it.

Fresh Cabbage

Cabbage

Cabbage actually happens to be one of my favorite carbs to eat. There are over 400 different varieties of cabbage throughout the world, so I'm sure you can find a color, shape, or size to suit your specific taste. Like brown rice, cabbage also has approximately 15% of the daily recommended amount of fiber and is very versatile as well. It can be eaten cooked, raw, or served/added as a soup or stew. Cabbage has anti-inflammatory properties, the ample quantity of the amino acid glutamine assists with inflammation and the lactic acid in it alleviates muscle soreness. With high volumes of vitamin C that improves the immune system and fight the free radicals that can damage the body and skin. Cabbage has also displayed cancer fighting properties, the vitamin K and anthocyanin aid in the prevention of Alzheimer's disease, beta-carotene helps prevent cataracts and it's a natural remedy for stomach ulcers. When your on that mission to shed unwanted pounds, cabbage only has about 35 calories a serving, so you could eat cabbage pretty much all day without gaining weight.

Low Glycemic Carbs

A Batch of Cauliflower

Cauliflower

I was never a big vegetable eater growing up, so a lot of the things I eat now took some time to build an acquired taste for them. Cauliflower would definitely be one of those things. The most advantageous way to get all the nutritional and health benefits of the cauliflower is to simply eat them raw. If you can't take the crunch or taste without making faces while your chewing it, there are other options on how to prepare them. Cauliflower is filled with proteins, omega 3 fatty acids, potassium, phosphorus, B vitamins (folic acid, pantothenic acid, riboflavin, niacin, thiamine, and pyridoxine), vitamin K and the antioxidants vitamin C and manganese. The fiber contained in cauliflower provides digestive system support, the anti-inflammatory properties lessens the risk of diseases such as obesity, arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease, and the antioxidants not only protect you from cardiovascular disease, but they also assist the liver in rendering cancer causing toxic substances ineffective, detoxing the body. The floret is normally the most common part of cauliflower that is consumed, however the leaves and stems are edible as well. So there really isn't an excuse for you not to reap the benefits of the cauliflower.

Asparagus Tips

Asparagus

Asparagus are another one of those things that you have to acquire a taste for, at least I had too. You can dress them up a little by cutting them up in salads, lightly steaming them or even barbeque them with mustard. One of the foremost advantages of eating asparagus on a regular basis is the effects it's abundance of B vitamins have on the cardiovascular system, controlling the blood glucose levels by way of metabolizing sugars and starches and mitigating the factors that can cause heart disease. Like many of the other carbohydrates on this list, asparagus contains a wealth of antioxidants (Vitamin C, beta-carotene, manganese, selenium and zinc) which combat the free radicals that accelerate the aging process. the anti-inflammatory's battle afflictions such as arthritis, asthma and autoimmune diseases. A natural diuretic, studies have shown asparagus effectively handles swelling, arthritis and water retention. Asparagus is also associated with the decreasing of blood pressure, strengthening the immune system, regulating the digestive system, controls blood sugar levels, impedes constipation and did I mention it only has 45 calories per serving?

Glycemic Index Chart

Pinto Beans

Pinto Beans

Although beans (also commonly referred to as legumes) are not a complete protein, as the do not contain all of the essential amino acids we need, they do provide up to approximately four times the amount of protein compared to that of whole grains. By now you should have begun to see a pattern in this list of good carbohydrates. They help maintain/lose weight due to the high content of fiber that keeps the digestive system running at an optimum level along with many other health benefits. Pinto Beans have about 6 grams of fiber per serving, they also aid in glucose control, manages functionality of the colon, lowers cholesterol, antioxidant protection, and lessens the rick factors of many different types of cancers, heart disease, and prostate health. They only con of eating a lot of beans is that they are not completely digested, due to the fact that they contain fibers that the body cannot absorb or digest, so they are broken down by bacteria in the intestines creating gas (flatulence). Properly cooking the beans can drastically diminish the amount of oligosaccharides (fiber that can't be digested or absorbed) so that you don't offend anyone with gas.

Bowl of Spinach

Strong to the finish, because you eat your Spinach

If I had known what Pop-eye knew a long time ago, spinach would have been a major component in my eating habits 30 years ago. Not only did it make Pop-eye stronger to beat down Bluto, just one serving of spinach has approximately 20% of the daily recommended allowance of fiber, which contributes to controlling your appetite, managing blood sugar, and preventing constipation. Spinach has a ridiculous amount of vitamin K (over 1000% of RDA) which is imperative in maintaining bone strength and density, impedes the formation of calcium in tissue (calcification), and augments brain function and a healthy nervous system. The excessive amount of vitamin A (340% of RDA) is a major factor in white blood cells that fight infection, improves the skin, the antioxidants defend the eyes from cataracts and enzymes that help lower blood pressure. Spinach is actually one good carb that doesn't have to be dressed up to taste great.

Sweet Potatoes

Sweet Potatoes

The sweet potato is by far my favorite good carb to eat. I don't add nothing to eat, bake it and eat it plain and it tastes great. Packed with the antioxidant vitamin C, which not only aids in fighting colds and flu viruses, vitamin C also has a starring role in blood cell formation, tooth and bone formation, accelerated wound healing and digestion. If your not a fun in the sun type of person such as myself and don't get a lot of sun, you may want to eat the sweet potato to acquire the necessary vitamin D which is essential for energy levels, heart, nerves, skin, moods, immune system and overall health in general. The magnesium in the potato is a necessity for healthy arteries, heart and nerve function. The iron ensures red and white blood cell production, metabolizing of proteins and sufficient immune function. Normally eating healthy may be a little more expensive, but when it comes to the sweet potato, it can be found pretty much anywhere and is very easy on your wallet.

Bowl of Oatmeal with Apples and Cinnamon

Good Carbohydrates

How many of these good carbohydrates do you already eat?

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Oatmeal (not instant)

Okay, now back to the carbs that have a bland taste and you may find yourself trying to dress them up for better taste. One serving of plain oats comes with about 5 grams of soluble fiber (the kind that hinders the absorption of bad cholesterol) and 10 grains of protein. The fiber in oatmeal gives you that full feeling for an extended period of time, making the stomach take longer to empty, thus averting weight gain. When your eating habits have a high fiber content, this maintains blood sugar levels and gives you energy for a longer period of time, avoiding energy slumps that can come from eating sugars and simple carbohydrates. The antioxidants in oatmeal assist in fighting cardiovascular disease, hardening of the arteries, strengthens the immune system, minimize the risk of high blood pressure and can also hamper the development of diabetes. For those of you that do not like to eat gluten, oatmeal has a minimal amount of gluten.

Carbs versus Carbs

Plate of Red Apples

An Apple a Day

We have all heard the old saying before, "an apple a day keeps the doctor away", well there is a lot truth behind that cliche'. Besides helping you lose/maintain your weight, apples actually do have many other major health benefits. Research has shown that the pectin in apples aids in the lowering of bad cholesterol (LDL) and lessens the bodies need for insulin, which is great for those trying to manage their diabetes.The flavanoids help with bone density and the quercetin contained in apples protects the brain from free radicals that can cause Azlheimers disease. Quercetin has also been linked to the prevention of lung cancer, diminishing the risk of breast, colon and liver cancers. So for those of you that use the "long work days" or busy days as an excuse to continue with your bad eating habits, you can carry a couple of apples with you anywhere you need to go. Problem solved.

Pouring a glass of Skim Milk

A Glass of Skim Milk

Encase you didn't already know, the difference between whole milk and skim milk is that the fat content has been removed in skim milk. A lot of vitamins are lost during this process so many milk manufacturers simply add the vitamins back artificially after the process. So the final product is very similar to that of whole milk, just with less fat and calories. Skim milk comes with casein protein, which can take up to 7 hours for the body to break it down and digest it (depending on the person). This is extremely beneficial to the fitness fanatic/weight loss enthusiast in controlling their weight and muscle development and preservation. Skim milk normally contains higher concentrations of protein, calcium and potassium than other kinds of milk. If your accustomed to the taste of 2% or whole milk, switching to skim milk might take some getting use too. A glass right before bed can go a long way in helping with your weight loss goals.

As I've always said, losing weight is a process which is not going to happen overnight. The time frame would be dependent on many factors, including how much weight you need to lose. Adding these items to your grocery list will definitely allow you to hit the ground running in your weight loss quest and make it that much easier. With the addition of a consistent work out routine, you will begin to notice the pounds will just start falling off.

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    • Kiss andTales profile image

      Kiss andTales 3 years ago

      Great hub !

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Just discovered that I'm a few pounds into obesity. Don't want that. I have to become intentional about following your advice. Thanks for your very helpful articles.

    • dwelburn profile image

      David 3 years ago from Chesterfield, UK

      Some great advice here; and some excellent carb choices. My favorite is oatmeal :)

    • lilmissmontana profile image

      Erin Nichols 3 years ago from Montana

      I love this article! A lot of people hear carbs are bad and assume all carbs are bad. It's wonderful that you put together a list of healthy carbs.

    • profile image

      carlajbehr 3 years ago

      Great article and very helpful! I really like some of the foods discussed and will plan to try to incorporate them more into my diet.

    • profile image

      dragonflycolor 3 years ago

      I am an offender of the bad carbs, but I am trying to eat more good carbs when we go out to eat or cook at home. I am overweight, trying to eat better, drinking more water, and have taken up a community baseball league sport for exercise. It's going well for the time being. Thanks for the info!

    • Randal Bruce profile image

      Randal Bruce 3 years ago from Charlottesville, VA

      Great stuff. I definitely will adding some of these items to my grocery list. It's time to shed some lbs.

    • profile image

      Eric Zylstra 3 years ago

      I will be running a 25k this weekend. Defiantly plan to include some of these into my meal the night before!

    • midget38 profile image

      Michelle Liew 3 years ago from Singapore

      I always knew that it was it the carbs! Yes. Thanks for pointing us to the right ones!

    • mbasa profile image

      Zimkhitha 3 years ago from South Africa

      I watched a Dr.Oz episode whereby he was talking about cutting out the bad carbs from your diet. He said that as long as you eat the correct carbs, you can't be addicted to them. Oats and brown rice came up tops!

    • suzettenaples profile image

      Suzette Walker 3 years ago from Taos, NM

      Excellent article and spot on with the health benefits of these foods. I eat them all, with the exception of milk, and they do all the things your article says. The pounds do come off with eating these foods. And the pounds come off slowly which is the best way to lose weight. Great article!

    • andrekennedyjr profile image

      andrekennedyjr 3 years ago from Washington D.C.

      Didn't know cauliflower had so many health benefits, I love that stuff!!!

    • Hot Rod Loves You profile image

      R. Fritz 3 years ago from Houston, TX.

      Great article on weight loss! Shared on Facebook Group Limu Promoters. https://www.facebook.com/groups/limupromoters/

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 3 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Great advice on the eating plan and so wroth trying.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 3 years ago

      I am learning so much through your posts here on HP. On this one, I discover the need to increase brown rice in my diet. Thanks for the help and advice.

    • ladyweight profile image

      ladyweight 3 years ago

      Great article Alphadogg. I like em all except spinach; guess I still can't get over some of my childhood peeves. All those foods consist of complex carbohydrates that many of us lack in our diets. It is more pleasing to grab a bowl of ice-cream than a stick of carrot. That's why we often fall back into unhealthy eating habits. Keep up the good work.

    • Alphadogg16 profile image
      Author

      Kevin W 3 years ago from Texas

      Thank you all for the read, I try to be helpful and keep everyone fit and healthy.

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