By Heide Kennedy, Arizona Farm Bureau Communications Intern
When I’m feeling stressed, I often find myself reaching for a carb-filled snack such as a bag of greasy popcorn or tortilla chips for consolation. And if we’re honest, just two or three chips is not enough to satisfy that craving. It feels as though once you get started on a few chips, you just keep going. Come to find out, one of the biggest reasons that it is so easy to binge eat carbs has to do with the quality of those carbs.
According to a recent article from the Cleveland Clinic, the difference lies in whether the carbs are refined carbs or high-fiber carbs. Registered dietician Anna Taylor notes that “When we consume a lot of these refined carbs, those foods are more quickly digested and absorbed into the body, causing a spike in blood sugar. That spike, in turn, triggers hunger that causes us to, yep, reach for those refined carbs again and keep the cycle going.”
So, does that mean that we should completely eliminate all refined carbs from our diet and throw away every bag of chips in the pantry? Luckily, the answer is no!
One of the ways that you can still enjoy carbs is by choosing carb sources that are higher in fiber because those carbs take longer for your body to digest. This will leave you feeling more satisfied for longer periods of time, and help to reduce binge eating. Choosing high-fiber foods can be as easy as cutting out white grains and switching to whole grain foods and reducing refined sugar intake. Or, you can explore other high-fiber options such as beans, chickpeas, lentils and quinoa.
For recipe ideas that feature many of these high-fiber carb sources, check out the recipe database on Arizona Farm Bureau’s Fill Your Plate Blog.