Is there really such a thing as a good or a bad carbohydrate? Barbara J. Rolls, chair of the department of Nutrition Sciences at Penn State University, says “Yes.” She classifies “good” carbohydrates as those with lower calorie density, meaning those with fewer calories per bite.

For example, if you’re faced with a bowl of chocolate-covered pretzels and a bowl of berries (both full of carbs), which is better. Using Dr. Rolls’ criteria, the berries are better because they contain far fewer calories per bite.

We have often said that there are no superheroes or arch villains when it comes to food, and that applies to carbs as well. A balanced diet for most healthy adults should contain about 45 to 65 percent carbs. These help provide your body with the fuel it needs throughout the day. Carbs are also important for the functioning of the brain, the red blood cell system and the immune system.

The problem is that many foods high in carbohydrates are also high in calories. And that’s trouble for anyone trying to stay fit. Fortunately, many natural foods are high in carbs and low in calories. Many fruits and vegetables fall into this category. Mangoes, grapes, apples, and oranges as well as corn and potatoes are all high in carbohydrates and relatively low in calories per bite. They are also high in fiber, and they contain essential vitamins and nutrients too.

Carbohydrates are part of a healthy, balanced diet for most people. So eat your carbs, but make sure you choose foods with lower calories per bite!

Remember, healthy choices you make each day can transform your family for generations! What choices will you make today?
You may also want to read: Eat Right: What You Eat First Matters, Breakfast on the Go: 3 Ideas to Start Healthy…in a Hurry!, 7 Popular Nutrition Myths Busted

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