Dietary Sources of Carbohydrates

Written by rissa watkins
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Dietary Sources of Carbohydrates
(Hannah Chapman/SXC username Cybersnot)

Carbohydrates are in most of the foods people eat. People might think all carbohydrates are bad, but that is wrong. Humans need some carbohydrates to stay healthy. The trick is to eat good dietary sources of carbohydrates and avoiding the bad ones.

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Carbohydrates have the biggest impact on your blood glucose levels, according to the Mayo Clinic. Elevated blood sugar levels trigger your body to release insulin. Insulin pushes the sugar into cells, preventing fat breakdown in the body.

Low Carbohydrate Versus High Carbohydrate

Food that is lower in carbohydrates will have less of an impact on your blood sugar levels than high-carbohydrate foods. Lower carbohydrate foods are usually denser, causing you to feel fuller longer than high-carbohydrate foods.


You might think all vegetables are low in carbohydrates, but that's not true. Most leafy green vegetables such as cabbage, lettuce and greens are lower in carbohydrates. These vegetables are better dietary sources of carbohydrates than starchy vegetables like corn or potatoes.


Bagels, croissants and other white breads are high in carbohydrates. Better dietary sources of carbohydrates are cracked wheat, rye or sourdough bread. For breads, dense and dark is usually better for you than fluffy, white breads.


Pasta can be a good dietary source of carbohydrates as long as it is higher grain pasta such as whole wheat pasta. Spinach pasta is another option that is much better than pasta made with white flour.


Rice is another food choice most think they should avoid because it is too high in carbohydrates. White rice like Jasmine rice used in Asian cooking can raise your blood sugar very high. Brown rice is a healthier option that is a much better dietary source of carbohydrates.

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