Carbohydrates are an essential macronutrient that comes in three forms: sugar, starch, and fiber. Carbs are in many of the foods we eat. Sugar is the least healthy kind of carb, a monosaccharide that metabolizes quickly, causing spikes in blood sugar that put stress on the insulin production of the pancreas. Starch is a polysaccharide in plants, grains, and potatoes. It metabolizes slower, making it a healthier carb. Fiber is mostly undigestible, but it helps the body feel full for a long time and eases constipation. Fiber helps with weight management, reduces cholesterol, and feeds healthy gut bacteria.
Bread is high in carbohydrates, but white bread does not contain much fiber and can cause spikes in blood sugar that stress the pancreas and metabolism. One medium bagel contains 36 grams of carbohydrates, 12 percent of the daily recommended intake, and two slices of white bread contain 26 grams. Whole-wheat bread contains about the same amount of carbohydrates as white bread, but it has more fiber, so opt for whole-grain bread over white bread.
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