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Simple and complex carbohydrates, sugars, fast, slow, starch

Simple and complex carbohydrates, sugars, fast, slow, starch

Up until now, we've tended to consider simple carbohydrates, present in sweet-tasting foods (sweets, fizzy drinks etc.), as "fast" and complex carbohydrates, present in foods containing starch (bread, pasta, rice, cereals...) as "slow".

The former were deemed to produce a fleeting peak in blood sugar levels, and the latter were said to 'fill you up' and deliver long-lasting energy.

However, when GI first came in, this classification was deemed too simplistic - it's not necessarily the simple carbohydrates that are the quickest. So bread and white rice, which are rich in starch and therefore considered slow, actually have a high glycaemic index. Naturally, in an age when obesity and conditions like diabetes are rife, this discovery shook up the way we think about carbs.


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