Carbohydrate-rich foods naturally contain varying levels of glucose. Carbohydrates are found in fruits, vegetables, milk and milk products, grains, seeds and legumes. The body breaks down these foods and converts them into glucose for energy. Every cell uses glucose and it's the brain's only energy source.Continue Reading
Carbohydrates are broken down at various speeds, depending on their complexity. Simple carbohydrates, like fructose, a sugar found in fruits, rapidly enters the bloodstream as glucose for a quick source of energy. Complex carbohydrates, which contain a lot of fiber and complex starches, like barley or beans, enter the bloodstream as glucose more slowly. They provide a more sustained source of energy to the body.
Nutritionally speaking, complex carbohydrates make healthier food choices. They tend to be nutrient dense, containing important vitamins and minerals in addition to complex sugars. They also contain fiber, the part of a plant that remains undigested and passes through the body largely intact. There are two types of fiber: soluble and insoluble. Soluble fiber dissolves in water, and helps lower blood glucose and cholesterol levels. It's found in foods like beans, apples, oatmeal and lentils. Insoluble fiber adds bulk to the diet. Its laxative effect promotes regularity and helps prevent constipation. It's found in foods like brown rice, carrots and whole grain breads.Learn more about Nutritional Content
The foods with the highest levels of vitamin A include sweet potatoes, carrots and dark green leafy vegetables, such as kale and spinach. Vitamin A is an important nutrient for keeping a person's immune system and vision healthy.Full Answer >
Foods that raise HDL levels include whole grain and wheat products, nuts, foods containing plant sterols and omega-3 fatty acid-rich foods. A doctor may advise a person with high cholesterol to eat these foods with or without medication.Full Answer >
White rice, cornmeal and white potatoes are the three foods with the highest levels of starch. Just one serving of white rice (parboiled, cooked and unenriched) has 47 grams of starch. These types of foods generally digest in a very short time and cause blood sugar levels to spike.Full Answer >
Foods that contain the highest levels of purines include sardines; anchovies; organ meats, such as brains, kidney and liver; gravy; and most meats. Beer is also high in purines. Other fish and seafood as well as oatmeal, wheat germ and wheat bran contain moderate levels of purines.Full Answer >