The complex carbohydrates or slowly absorbed carbohydrates are those carbohydrates or carbohydrates formed by the largest sugar chains (oligosaccharides and polysaccharides ), usually consumed in the form of fibers or starches, the latter method vegetal beings for storing energy (equivalent to fat in animals).
Unlike simple or fast-absorbing carbohydrates (monosaccharides), these nutrients provide the body with a longer energy release throughout the day, which is why they are often recommended for people seeking to lose weight.
In this way, complex carbohydrates provide a much more extensive feeling of filling, since they cannot be converted into glucose quickly and stored in the form of fat reserves , as can be the case with simple carbohydrates. For the same reason, their consumption is discouraged for people with diabetic disorders or metabolic imbalances, and they are a recommended alternative to refined and processed sugars.
Examples of foods with complex carbohydrates
- Whole wheat flours . Especially those made from whole grains. For example, corn flour, oatmeal, cassava flour, grated wheat, bran or bran, whole wheat flour or cracked wheat, muesli, sorghum.
- Grains . Particularly those that have not been processed and stripped of their essential nutrients (like starches). For example: quinoa, popcorn, grain corn, buckwheat, barley, wild or brown rice, oats, wheat germ.
- Pulses . Coming from vegetable pods, such as peas, lentils, beans, beans (black, white, red), chickpeas, peas, broad beans, alfalfa, couscous, soybeans or soybeans.
- Tubers and roots . Normally they are rich in starches, such as potatoes (baked, especially), sweet potatoes, chayote, squash, manioc (yucca), yams, and octopus.
- Vegetables. Especially those rich in calcium, such as spinach, chard, leeks, purslane, artichokes and most cabbages. Also zucchini, paprika and asparagus, green beans.
- Nuts and seeds . Particularly those that have not been processed. Such as almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts, raisins, pistachios, sunflower seeds, plantain, flax or mustard.
- Fruits . Most fruits contain simple carbohydrates (monosaccharides), but bananas (not bananas), pears, grapefruits, avocados, radishes, figs, and plums contain abundant complex carbohydrates. Also the apple rind.
- Algae and lichens . Foods rich in mucilage, such as agar-agar and other red algae (rhodium), or lichen of Iceland, contain abundant complex carbohydrates.
- Vegetables and vegetables . Especially those rich in mucilage and cellulose, such as cucumber, carrot, eggplant, tomatoes, onion and most sprouts.
- Green leaves. Usually used raw in salads: lettuce, radicheta, arugula, watercress; or as flavorings and infusions, such as parsley, thyme and coriander.
- Dairy . Certain cheeses, yogurt, and skim milk contain just as much complex carbohydrates as soy milk (even though it’s not actually dairy). In contrast, milk and most of its derivatives contain monosaccharide sugars .
- Seafood . Certain shellfish can be a source of complex carbohydrates (glycogens), such as mussels or oysters, as well as most edible bivalves. However, most are lost in the commercial or industrial management of them.
- Vegetable stems . Rich in cellulose (vegetable relative of glucose), such as celery, chives, garlic joint, hearts of palm, cauliflower, watercress and broccoli (the stems). Especially if they are consumed green or steamed.
- Vegetable oils . Although they are not properly a food, nor do they provide complex carbohydrates per se , their use (especially olive oil) allows to preserve the polysaccharides in plant foods and not to denature the sugars contained in them.
- Breads and pasta . Only those made from wholemeal flours or those indicated above, such as bran, whole wheat, without added processed sugars.