Could “fast” be good?

Proteins, fats and carbohydrates are the most important sources of energy in the human diet. However, if the first are considered absolutely useful, then the rest, according to the generally accepted opinion, pose a real threat to our health. Carbohydrates are especially dangerous and unhealthy, and not all, but those belonging to the group of fast or simple ones. Our article will help you figure out whether fast carbohydrates are really as harmful as they are positioned, what kind of foodstuffs nature has endowed them with.

A fast-acting carb is a form of carbohydrate that will raise blood glucose levels relatively quickly when ingested. 

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What are monosaccharides?

Fast carbohydrates and monosaccharides, include the following compounds: glucose, fructose and galactose. All of these simple carbohydrates are capable of converting into fat, but the second in the list above has succeeded better than the rest. But on the other hand, fructose, in comparison with other fast carbohydrates, is less stored in reserve, making the transition to glycogen, which is concentrated in the liver.

What are the pros of glucose? It does an excellent job supplying energy to the human body. In addition, we receive this monosaccharide as a result of delicacies with products with slow carbohydrates in the composition. The explanation for this is simple: as a result of the digestion process, slow sugars are broken down into elementary components, which is glucose.

Examples of Fast Carbs

Foods with a high glycemic index include processed carbohydrates such as breads, cereals, sugars, fruits and some starchy vegetables. These foods are considered fast carbs. The carbohydrate molecules in these foods are smaller, especially in the case of sugar, and are broken down rapidly into sugars in your intestines. 

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Effects of carbohydrates on human health

How do carbohydrates affect the body? Carbohydrates are the main source of energy for physical and mental performance. In addition, all types of carbohydrates are necessary for uninterrupted cell division, muscle strengthening and normalization of growth dynamics. It is worth noting that when the body is saturated with carbohydrates, overeating and lethargy after eating rarely occur. This is due to the fact that carbohydrates are quickly absorbed by the body, give a boost of vivacity and do not require much time for this.

The lack of carbohydrates in the diet leads to the fact that for energy, the body breaks down proteins that are more useful for the recovery of the body. The calorie content of proteins and carbohydrates is relatively the same.

The harm of carbohydrates

The peculiarity of the assimilation of glucose and other monosaccharides by the body is such that for this, the human gastric gland produces insulin. Insulin converts monosaccharides to the polysaccharide glycogen, which is stored in the liver. At the rate of consumption of monosaccharides, this does not cause any harm, but with an excess of them in the blood, insulin converts monosaccharides into fatty acids and they are deposited as fat. Usually, fast carbohydrates are completely excluded from food during a diet.

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What does the body need fast carbohydrates for?

Researches show that due to sugars the absorption of foods rich in proteins and fats is possible. All doctors and nutritionists are of the same opinion that the diet should mostly consist of foods full of slow carbohydrates. 

However, there are situations when you need to restore energy as soon as possible, even if for a short time, in this case fast carbohydrates are irreplaceable. They dramatically increase blood glucose levels, which leads to a surge in insulin, intense blood circulation, and high muscle tone. This helps to cope with light-headedness, dizziness, nausea.

It is best for a healthy diet to pay attention to the glycemic index when choosing foods for the diet. It might be difficult to do this in public catering establishments, but for a home menu it is quite realizable. 

Eating balanced meals and snacks that include carbohydrates, protein and healthy fats lowers the meal’s overall glycemic load and is probably going to help you feel more nourished and satisfied overall.

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Stay balanced

Most foods with slow carbohydrates can be eaten, starting with leafy green vegetables and adding more healthy carbs. 

Often the main problem is that people eat too many fast carbohydrates, but do not burn these carbohydrates. When you have a limited amount of carbs and enough exercise, it's easy to find your healthy weight. The trick is to find the right balance, choose the right way and remember that you don't diet for 3 weeks but choose the right healthy lifestyle to live.

And remember: “The greatest wealth is health.”

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Julia Stecher is an award-winning fitness model, professional nutritionist, and certified personal trainer who provides personal training services in Zurich and online.

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