How ‘Fast Carbs’ May Undermine Your Health

Obesity and metabolic diseases are complex conditions, driven by a variety of factors, including genetics, environment, diet, and lifestyle. But after decades of research and interviewing prominent nutrition researchers, Drs. Kessler found that the one thing that is most successful is that they limit highly processed carbs.

Yet these fast carbs foods have become a mainstay for many people. According to the federal government, cereal-based desserts such as cookies, donuts and granola bars are Largest source of calories The American diet, followed by bread, sugar drinks, pizza, pasta dishes, and other processed foods. About 60 to 70 percent of processed foods contain refined wheat, corn, tapioca, rice, potatoes and other fast carbs as their primary components.

For thousands of years, humans have been processing foods in various ways for cooking, boiling, grinding or mixing. But Dr. Kessler argues that industrial processing of carbs occurring today has a more pronounced effect on food than the techniques used by our ancestors.

“If cooking and milling were early forms of processing,” he writes, “today’s food manufacturing strategies are more aptly called.”

Most grains that are used in foods such as breakfast cereals, corn chips and crackers are melted by high-speed steel rollers. They are then proceeded through a variety of high pressure techniques. One of these is extrusion cooking, a thermal and mechanical process that dramatically alters the chemical structures of grains, breaking their long chains of glucose into small starch molecules that can be rapidly digested.

“The physical properties of the original starch molecule are no longer the same,” Dr. Kessler writes. “The granule structure has been destroyed, glucose polymer chains have reduced in size, and their surface area has expanded, which is how fast these foods are absorbed from our digestive system into our bloodstream.”

Our intestinal length is about 25 feet, an evolutionary adaptation that allows us to slowly extract glucose from relatively unbroken starches as they move through our system. But processes like extrusion are essentially like precursor starch to us: they reach our stomach as a soft, porous paste, and the glucose that is absorbed beyond the stomach into the first part of the small intestine, The duodenum ignores the need to travel. Through the entire digestive system.

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