The main source of energy for our body comes from carbohydrates which are obtained from eating vegetables, grains and dairy products. starch, sugar and fiber are the three main types of carbohydrates found in foods.
Chain of small sugars makeup starch. These chains of small sugars break down to give us energy.Calorie content of every gram of starch contains 4 calories. Sugars are the most simple form of carbohydrates and are be easily digested by the body. Fibers are the type of carbohydrates which our body is not able to break down during digestion and hence they do not provide any calories.
Foods like jellies, cakes, candies, soda and fruits contain a lot of sugars. While foods like noodles, breads, grains and vegetables contain starch. Eating foods rich in healthy, high fiber carbohydrates helps in maintaining a healthy weight. Consuming Foods which are rich in sugars and starch can lead to weight gain and high blood pressure.
People who are trying to lose weight are recommended to have a low carb diet. But You should never stop carbs completely in your diet as it can be harmful to the body. Each gram of carbohydrates contains 3.75 kilocalories. Our body’s daily requirement for calories should be fulfilled 40 to 60% by carbohydrates, anything lower than this is unhealthy. The Body’s Daily requirement of carbohydrates is 130 grams in adults.
Here are some rich sources of carbohydrates foods:
Below is a list of carbohydrate foods list.
1. Potatoes :
Potatoes are loaded with starch which is a form of carbohydrate. A single cup of boiled potatoes has as much as 31 grams of carbohydrates and a cup of mashed potatoes has even higher i.e. 36 grams of carbohydrates. Hash browns that we have with tea or coffee are also made from potatoes and have 35% of carbohydrates while french fries contain 27% of carbs. Potatoes are also rich source of potassium which is an essential nutrient required by our body. One medium sized potato contains 110 calories. Potatoes do not contain any sodium, cholesterol or fat which makes them great for any diet. They are also loaded with Vitamin C, Vitamin B6, fibers and iron.
2. Whole grains:
Complex carbohydrates and dietary fiber are very important for our body, Whole grains are an excellent source of these complex carbs and dietary fiber. All types of whole grains are rich in complex carbs and contain bran and endosperm which provide different nutrients needed by our body. Grains like rice, corn, wheat, barley, oats and buckwheat contain carbohydrates. Brown rice contains the highest carbohydrates, 38 mg of carbohydrates per serving. Brown rice is said to provide our body with energy boosting carbohydrates. It also contains a lot of fiber which helps with digestion and bowel movement. Many doctors suggest having whole grain over regular grains as they improve digestive health and help manage weight.
3. Citrus fruits:
Citrus fruits are loaded with vitamins, minerals and dietary fibers which are essential for healthy growth and development of the body. The main reason we get energy from citrus fruits is that they are loaded with carbohydrates. They contain carbohydrates in the form of fructose, glucose and sucrose. A medium grapefruit contains 18.5 grams of carbs and 2.7 grams of fiber. A single serving of oranges contain 14 g of carbohydrates.
We all know that berries are rich in antioxidants, but they are also with pro-anthocyanin natural pigments. Different types of Berries like strawberries, blueberries and blackberries contain carbs in good quantities. There are 14 grams of carbs in a cup size quantity of Both blackberries and strawberries while there are 21 grams of carbs in a cup blueberries. The antioxidants present in berries helps to get rid of harmful oxidizing free radicals from the body and protect the body against cancer and other infections.
Watermelons are low in calories and have a high water content. Watermelons are a rich source of vitamin C, which is a major antioxidant and it also contains beta carotene which is a form of Vitamin A which helps in preventing cataract and improves eye sight. A cup of watermelons contain 11 grams of carbohydrates. The glycemic Index of watermelons is 72.
You must have heard that an apple a day keeps the doctor away, These fruits truly are loaded with various nutrients. Apples are one of the most popular fruits among health conscious people. Apples also contain a significant amount of carbohydrates. A single apple contains 23 grams of carbohydrates. A single 8 oz. serving of apple juice contains 30 grams of carbohydrates. Apples also contains phytonutrients and antioxidants that play an important role in keeping our body healthy.
7. Sweet potato:
Sweet potatoes are loaded with high amounts of carbohydrates and are a good source of energy. A single serving of sweet potato has 240 calories and 55 grams of carbohydrates. Sweet potato is known to be low in sodium, and very low in saturated fat and cholesterol. It is one of the best sources of Dietary fiber, Vitamin B 5, Potassium, Vitamin A, vitamin C and manganese.
8. Nuts and legumes:
Legumes are a very good source of carbohydrates and proteins. They are the richest source of proteins than any other vegetable. Legumes are known to contain a high amount of complex carbohydrates. They also contain omega 3 fatty acids and various other vitamins and minerals. Legumes being rich in fiber help with digestion and maintaining healthy weight. Legumes like lentils, chick peas, split peas, soybeans, kidney beans and pinto beans contain the highest amount of proteins and complex carbohydrates.
Cereals are a staple breakfast in many households. They are a healthy way to start a day, as they are loaded with carbohydrates which provide us with a good amount of energy to go through the day. Most of the ready to eat cereals are loaded with sugars which is the most basic form of carbohydrates our body needs. Store bought ready to eat cereals have 98% of carbohydrates, while homemade cereals like oats or rye contain 13-15% of carbohydrates. Cereals also include nutrients like fiber, protein, zinc, iron and B vitamins. The healthiest breakfast cereals are Oats to start the day.
10. Dry fruits:
Dried fruits are said to be rich in carbohydrates and other important nutrients like fibers and vitamins. Fruits like apples, prunes, bananas when dried contain 88% carbohydrates while peaches, apricots and raisins contain around 75% of carbohydrates. Having 1/4 cup of raisins will provide your body with 45g grams of carbohydrates. Adding dried fruits to your diet is a good way to add carbohydrates to your diet, you can use dry fruits in salads and baked desserts.
Bananas are loaded with fiber and potassium. A single banana contains 24g of carbs. Bananas have the highest amount of sugars than any other fruit. They are also rich in Vitamins like vitamin B6 and vitamin C. Having a banana daily with your breakfast will give a good start to the day, you can also choose to add it to your cereals, fruit salads, yoghurts and milk shakes.
Bread is something that we all eat on a daily basis and it supplies us with a good amount of nutrients that are required for the growth and maintenance of the body. Breads especially brown bread are a good source of vitamins, minerals, fiber and carbohydrates and are low in cholesterol and fat. A single slice of brown bread or whole grain has around 20 grams of carbs. Brown bread is an healthier option to add to your diet instead of white bread. Brown Breads are also rich in fiber which tends to keep you full for a longer period of time and help in managing your weight.
Both white pasta and semolina pasta are a rich source of carbs and glycemic acid. The healthier type of pasta to use is the quinoa pasta or wheat pasta and topping it with some healthy vegetables. Three cups of pasta can provide our body with a total of 97g of carbohydrates. Whole wheat pasta is also enriched with Vitamin B and iron which makes it more nutritious and healthy.
14. Green Vegetables:
We all know that green vegetables are very healthy for us. All green vegetables contain a high amount of carbs and are loaded with many important minerals and vitamins. Greens like Peas, acorn squash and asparagus have upto 30 grams of carbohydrates per serving, while other vegetables like beans, okra, cucumbers, zucchini and spinach contain much higher amount of carbohydrates.