Carbohydrates are found in grains, vegetables, legumes and fruit.
The Best Source of Energy - Complex carbohydrates are the best source of energy. The body digest them slowly and steadily providing constant energy and keeping the stomach feeling full longer. The long molecules keep the digestive system happy and busy and the fiber carbs keep things moving and clear.
Sugar Blues - Simple carbohydrates are quickie carbs are actually quite stressful to the body when consumed alone in quantity. With very little digestive effort these quickie carbs (all that white sugar and corn syrup pressed on us by snack companies) are thrown into the bloodstream which gets the pancreas working hard producing a dose of insulin to carry the sugars around to the cells. Then suddenly the job is done and the blood sugar level goes too far down. Then adrenal hormones (stress hormones) are released that drag stored sugar from the liver trying to get things back to normal. Sweet junk food is full of processed quickie carbs. Natural sources of simple carbs, such as whole fruit, have fiber and other nutrients to balance the simple carbs.
The Whole Deal - We need foods that are a complete nutritional unit where fiber and other complex carbohydrates are combined with simple carbohydrates creating a mix that is great for steady digestion and where vitamins and minerals are included rounding out the nutritional benefit.
Where do we find these complete nutritional food units?
They grow that way! Apples, oranges, potatoes, spinach, walnuts, rice, beans, bananas, avocados, squash, carrots, pecans...you get the idea, the list goes on and on. Plant foods in their original form are outrageously nutritious.
Much of the food we eat is processed in some way, taken out of its original unit. Milling wheat grains for flour, for example, gives us flour to make pastas and breads with which is great. Just remember that nutrients that complement and benefit each other are often separated in processing. In the case of milled wheat grains, the white flour does not contain the nutrition dense wheat germ and digestion aiding wheat bran. Our bodies do best with and need, the full and complete combination of nutrients.