THE CARB CONFUSION: GOOD CARBS, BAD CARBS, NO CARBS? Dr. Braadt’s Nutrition Tips
I discussed carbs (carbohydrates) a bit in the last newsletter, but there’s more to know. Recently, a patient told me that he didn’t eat carbs. I asked what he ate for breakfast. He said, “Apple pie fromMcDonald’s.” I said, “That’s a carbohydrate.” He said, “No it’s not; it’s apples.” Ummm. A carbohydrate is any group of substances made of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen, including sugars, starches, grains, vegetables-and sweet fruits. Starchy carbs would include potatoes, yams, corn, and french fries. Non-starching veggies are unrefined carbs — good carbs. • Unrefined carbohydrates provide nutrients like vitamins, minerals and fiber. This includes green, leafy and cruciferous vegetables (plants from the cabbage family) such as broccoli, cauliflower, kale and radishes. Sweet fruits, like bananas, citrus, melons, pineapples etc., are sugary carbohydrates and should be limited. Eat berries instead because they contain less sugar. • Refined carbohydrates have minimal nutrients and include bread, pasta, cereal, crackers, donuts, cakes, cookies, candy, juice and alcohol. • The Standard American Diet (SAD) includes most of the refined carbohydrates as well as a lot of low-fat foods (not good) and large doses of chemical sweeteners, artificial flavors and colors with a lot of words you can’t pronounce on the labels. The key is to know your unrefined and refined carbs:
The risks of this SAD diet, which includes mostly refined carbs , on the American people has been a medical disaster! Depending on which researcher
you consult, over 70 percent of Americans are overweight with younger teens increasing weight at an alarming rate. Close to 40 percent of people are obese — defined as a body mass index (BMI) over 30. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reported in 2017 that over 30 million people were diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes with an estimated 24 percent of the population undiagnosed and 34 percent of the population is estimated to be pre-diabetic. That’s 10 years lost off the average lifespan. Annual cost per patient is $13,700. This SAD diet is also associated with problems like heart disease, Alzheimer’s and liver, eye and nerve damage. Adding to the problem is standard medical treatment with drug therapy. The FDA has put a black-box warning on the most common drug, Metformin, meaning long-term use is potentially life-threatening.
When choosing a carbohydrate, think unrefined whole foods instead of refined risk makers . There are no food labels on high nutrient vegetables. Remember, we’re moving toward creating and maintaining a healthy lifestyle that’s free of pain and full of energy so you can chase your dreams, big and small!
Chipotle-Roasted Carrot Salad
Inspired by Bon Appétit magazine
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 4 ounces watercress, stems trimmed Plain Greek yogurt, for serving Kosher salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
30 small carrots (2–3 bunches), tops removed and carrots scrubbed 2 chipotle peppers in adobo, minced 1 teaspoon adobo sauce from the chipotle can
1 tablespoon molasses
3. Once cooled, toss carrots with adobo sauce. Lay
1. Heat oven to 350 F. In a
rimmed baking sheet, toss carrots with chipotle peppers, molasses and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper, and roast for 30–35 minutes. 2. Transfer carrots to a plate and let them cool completely.
across a platter, and top with watercress.
4. Serve alongside yogurt.
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