Carbohydrates can be divided into two main groups. Simple carbs and complex carbs. Simple carbs include the sugars fructose (the sugar in fruit), glucose (main form of sugar) and lactose (the sugar in dairy products). Some examples of simple carbohydrates are white bread, white rice, biscuits, and crackers.
Complex carbohydrates include but are not limited to starchy vegetables, whole grains, brown rice, wholegrain pasta and wholegrain bread. These carbohydrates are digested more slowly than simple carbs, due to the fibre, and are more filling and so provide slightly longer lasting more steady energy release, although they are eventually broken down into simple sugars by the body. 15g of simple carbohydrates is approximately the equivalent of 1 tbsp of sugar.
Carbohydrates have a direct impact on our blood glucose levels because of this conversion to sugars in the body. We all know how sugars can negatively effect our health. Lowering the consumption of carbs can in turn help balance these blood sugar levels and as a result help with the feeling of fullness for longer periods of time minimizing blood sugar spikes.
Low Carb refers to low amounts of carbohydrates such as sugary foods, bread, pasta and grains, starchy vegetables such as potatoes.
Low carb diets usually mean eating more fat, more nutrient rich plant foods such as lower starch vegetables, and more protein.