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  • Good carbs?

    Can someone explain to me why they are called "good carbs"? Carbs are bad, in terms of cholesterol, inflamation and overall health, all carbs are pretty much the same. Are we calling them "good carbs" when we should be describing them as "carbs in good food"? I get how eatig potatoes for carbs are better than eating bread for carbs, but the carbs arent "good" the food surrounding the carbs are "better".

    Is this just a case of mislabeling?

  • #2
    Carbohydrates themselves are not necessarily "bad". They are a problem when...

    1. they increase blood glucose levels above an ideal range. These are high GI foods like processed grains and sugars.

    2. they come packaged with foods that have other "bad" things in them. This is a second argument against grains, gluten-contianing grains mostly.

    3. the carbohydrate in question is fructose. Fructose intake above the moderate amount found in a few servings of fruit is hell on your liver.

    The carbs of choice by many around here (sweet potatoes, squash, etc...) are free of all three of those issues.

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    • #3
      Yea, people often say carbs instead of grains. The confusion comes from the fact that in CW most of the carbs people eat come from grains. But you are right there are lots of good sources of carbs that avoid eating grains.
      Eating primal is not a diet, it is a way of life.
      PS
      Don't forget to play!

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      • #4
        The only concussively demonstrated benefit that I have seen to extremely low, ketosis-inducing, carbohydrate restriction is weight loss. If you are at a healthy weight, eating 20-30% of your calories from carbs is no problem. I have found that about 10-15% makes me feel best, but I don't monitor it carefully, and I'm sure everyone is different.

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        • #5
          fruit & veggies-- there's your good carbs
          --Trish (Bork)
          TROPICAL TRADITIONS REFERRAL # 7625207
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          • #6
            Originally posted by The Scientist View Post
            Carbohydrates themselves are not necessarily "bad". They are a problem when...

            1. they increase blood glucose levels above an ideal range. These are high GI foods like processed grains and sugars.

            2. they come packaged with foods that have other "bad" things in them. This is a second argument against grains, gluten-contianing grains mostly.

            3. the carbohydrate in question is fructose. Fructose intake above the moderate amount found in a few servings of fruit is hell on your liver.

            The carbs of choice by many around here (sweet potatoes, squash, etc...) are free of all three of those issues.
            This.

            Grains, sugar, and fructose are the main problems, and that is where most get their carbs from.

            You can't demonize a whole macronutrient in my opinion. But carbs are the most offending one in those with damaged metabolisms (most of us) due to intake of the above offenders.

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            • #7
              I'll have a sweet potato over a piece of fruit any day of the week.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by The Scientist View Post
                Carbohydrates themselves are not necessarily "bad". They are a problem when...

                1. they increase blood glucose levels above an ideal range. These are high GI foods like processed grains and sugars.
                What would you consider to be the ideal blood glucose range? I have read that permanent nerve damage, beta cell destruction and arterial wall inflammation start happening above 140.

                I have IGT. 8-10 grams of carbs take me to 140 at 1 hour postprandial and it doesn't seem to make much difference whether it is a high GI simple carb or low GI complex carb. I'm not sold on the GI index.

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                • #9
                  As others have said, we are really talking about the quality of carbohydrates, not that carbohydrates are "good/bad." They aren't "bad" for you, it's just that some are more nutritious than others.

                  We focus on veggies, then sweet potato/squash/pumpkin, then fruit.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Artbuc View Post
                    What would you consider to be the ideal blood glucose range? I have read that permanent nerve damage, beta cell destruction and arterial wall inflammation start happening above 140.

                    I have IGT. 8-10 grams of carbs take me to 140 at 1 hour postprandial and it doesn't seem to make much difference whether it is a high GI simple carb or low GI complex carb. I'm not sold on the GI index.
                    That seems like an enormous spike for 8-10 grams. At 100mg/dl you have about 5 grams in your blood, total. What is your fasting level before that? I have not tested mine in a long time, but I noticed a huge difference in high vs low GI foods. The data on GI and blood glucose response is well-documented in the scientific literature. I don't know enough about your specific condition to speculate about why you are seeing that kind of response.

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                    • #11
                      I think the whole good/bad thing really goes back to "empty" calories. IOW, if you get carbs from things that grow out of the ground, those are good carbs. If you get your carbs from Little Debby cakes, those are bad carbs.

                      The body may indeed process a carb is a carb is a carb, but what is being ingested in addition to that carb makes a difference. I think it's just a shorthand for, "Stop eating plastic wrapped crap and start eating stuff off of which you have to wash dirt."
                      "Right is right, even if no one is doing it; wrong is wrong, even if everyone is doing it." - St. Augustine

                      B*tch-lite

                      Who says back fat is a bad thing? Maybe on a hairy guy at the beach, but not on a crab.

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                      • #12
                        Good carbs are less processed, you can recognize it's origin, and those carbs to be avoided or limited have been through a processing maschine like a mill etc...
                        "All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident."

                        - Schopenhauer

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Gorbag View Post
                          Good carbs are less processed, you can recognize it's origin, and those carbs to be avoided or limited have been through a processing maschine like a mill etc...
                          Ain't that the truth! Have you ever seen a sugar beet? I lived in sugar beet country in England. Sugar beets are a monstrosity of a root, weighing up to 10 pounds. Sugar beets have seen much genetic modification to increase sugar yield. The sugar factories belch white smoke 24/7 while refining the sugar, it takes tons of sugar beets to produce pounds of sugar.

                          I'll bet if we just ate sugar beets we'd all be fine.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Kingofturtles View Post
                            Carbs are bad, in terms of cholesterol, inflamation and overall health, all carbs are pretty much the same.
                            This isn't even close to accurate. Your body is designed for carbs, fats, and protein. Quality and natural source is what matters. If your metabolism is all screwed up it won't process anything very well. Fat can attribute to cholesterol, inflammation, and poor health as easily as carbs. You realize vegetable oils are probably one of the most inflammatory things you can consume? That is mostly fat.
                            Last edited by statikcat; 11-25-2012, 04:09 PM.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by The Scientist View Post
                              That seems like an enormous spike for 8-10 grams. At 100mg/dl you have about 5 grams in your blood, total. What is your fasting level before that? I have not tested mine in a long time, but I noticed a huge difference in high vs low GI foods. The data on GI and blood glucose response is well-documented in the scientific literature. I don't know enough about your specific condition to speculate about why you are seeing that kind of response.
                              Yep, it came as a total shock to me. I got interested in blood sugar when my trigs almost tripled in one year while I was eating a very high carb low fat diet. Starting coming here and began doing a little research. Became concerned about my BG so I bought a meter. FBG is typically 95 +/-. For dinner this afternoon I had 2 grms from broccoli, 1 grm from collard greens and 5 from US Wellness liverwurst. One hour postprandial was 138. At that point I had dessert - shredded unsweetened coconut, cacao nibs and half&half, about 6 grams. One hour later BG was 105.

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