02 January 2019

Carbs are not the worst!

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Sims IVF

A healthy platter of fruit

Carbohydrates get a bad rap! But not all carbohydrates are created equal. Carbohydrates are actually the body’s chief source of energy, being the easiest micronutrient to absorb as they convert quickly into glucose for energy for the body to use.

But depending on what type of carbohydrate we eat the body can absorb glucose rapidly or have a slower sustained release. Unless we need to suddenly sprint for the bus then a slower release of energy is better for our bodies. That’s’ why it is best to go for complex carbohydrates rather than simple. Choosing a slower release carbohydrate will ensure balanced blood sugars, hormones, help to feel full longer and less likely to crave simple carbohydrates.

Include Complex Carbohydrates Avoid Simple carbohydrates
Whole grains - spelt, sourdough, rye Breads made from white flour
Gluten free grains - quinoa, brown rice, wild rice, buckwheat White rice
Starchy vegetables - sweet potato, pumpkin, beetroot, potato – careful portion size (fist) Pasta made from white refined flour
Oats, barley Pastries, crisps, baked goods made from white refined flours
Low GI fruit – berries, citrus fruits, stone fruits - pears, apples Most packaged cereals
Beans, legumes, lentils Chocolate
Vegetables Refined sugar

What are carbohydrates important for?

  • Fuel the work of most of the body’s cells
  • Key source of dietary fibre
  • Promotes optimal centre nervous system (brain and CNS need a continuous supply glucose to function effectively)
  • Needed for serotonin (feel happy hormone)
  • Can help weight loss

To boost fertility the best carbohydrates are complex carbohydrates especially vitamin packed vegetables. Load up on vegetables such as asparagus, cabbage, dark leafy greens, all lettuce, peppers, fennel, courgettes, cucumber, celery, mushrooms, onions, garlic, leeks, radish, rocket, tomato, green beans, seaweed, aubergine, brassica vegetables (these need to be cooked well if any thyroid issues as goitrogen vegetables can interfere with thyroid). Starchy vegetables include but careful portion size. Include sweet potato, sweetcorn, peas, parsnip, squash, beetroot, and carrots.

Would you like to find out more? Contact our nutritionist today at nutrition@sims.ie