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Blog posts tagged with 'starch'

Be Aware of the Hidden Fat Content in Your Diet

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Be Aware of the Hidden Fat Content in Your DietThere are some foods out there where all it takes is one glance to know they are bad for our health and full of saturated fats, carbs, and sugars. But there are also some foods that we consume on a consistent basis that are deceptively high in saturated and trans fats. The average daily calorie intake is around 2000 calories. The recommendation, if using 2000 calories as our base number, is that no more than 30% of our daily calories should come from fats. This comes out to about 65 grams of fat a day.

How Much Fat Is in Your Food?

To get an idea of what our daily intake of fat can look like, let's look at the fat content of some popular foods. The average fast-food cheeseburger contains 36 grams of fat, while 10 average fast-food french fries contain 8 grams of fat. A typical slice of pizza contains 8 grams of fat while an ounce of potato chips contain 10 grams of fat. It's easy to see how one meal can almost wipe out our daily fat intake! There are also some foods that can be deceptively high in fats. It should be noted that there are two types of fat. Trans-fats or saturated fats are the bad kind. They have been linked to bad heart health and can lead to weight problems. The “good” fats are unsaturated fats that can actually protect your body from these problems. Some meals and snacks can look like there's nothing to them, but because of the way they are processed and packaged their fat content soars. Some sneaky, bad, fatty foods include:

  • Movie theater popcorn
  • Packaged meals with added sauces, butter, or oil
  • Highly marbled red meats
  • Chicken and other poultry skins
  • Salad dressings

Some fatty foods containing the good fats are:

  • Olive and vegetable oils
  • Nuts
  • Avocados
  • Fatty fish like salmon and tuna

It's always important to be aware of your meals' fat content when playing the good fat/bad fat game. However, with our sometimes busy and active lifestyles we can't always make the healthy choice or comb through each meal's ingredients to make sure we are consuming the right amount of the right fats. Supplementing our diets with vitamins and minerals can helps ensure that we are getting the right nutrition on a consistent basis. When it comes to fats, omega fatty acid supplements can ensure that you're getting the good fats you need to maintain a healthy, balanced diet.

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Manage Your Sugar Levels by Being Picky About Your Fiber

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Manage Your Sugar Levels by Being Picky About Your FiberIt’s always great to get more fiber in your diet. However, it also pays to be picky about where you’re getting your fiber from because not all high-fiber foods are great at blocking sudden increases in your blood sugar levels. When you obtain your fiber from grains, for example, the starch in the grain converts into additional sugar, so it overpowers any sugar-blocking effects the fiber might have.

Fruits and vegetables contain more soluble fiber than sugar per serving, so they won’t raise your blood sugar levels as much when you get your fiber from these sources. True, these foods contain some amounts of sugar that make them naturally sweet. But unlike processed grains they lack starch that can change into additional sugar.

Choose Foods with Low Glycemic Loads

A simple way to determine which high-fiber foods are best for managing blood sugar is by checking their glycemic load. The glycemic load is an indicator of how much a certain food will raise blood sugar levels after consumption. Foods with glycemic loads greater than 100 increase your risk of health challenges due to high blood sugar levels. The best sugar blockers are fruits and veggies with glycemic load values less than 50. It’s also important to consider the order which you consume your fiber with meals in order for them to have any useful effect. There’s a good reason why salad is served before the main course: the soluble fiber in leafy greens helps counteract any sugar-raising starches that may be present in any carbohydrates in your meal. In general, vegetables are better sugar blockers than fruit because they contain more soluble fiber and have lower glycemic loads. You should try eating vegetables raw or cook them as little as possible to preserve their fiber content. However, both are much healthier alternatives to starch-rich grains.

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