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March 08, 2016 2 min read

By Ana Reisdorf, MS, RD

If you’re trying to lose weight you have no doubt heard that eating carbs will make you fat. However, this isn’t entirely true, as your body does require carbohydrates to use as fuel.

The key is eating carbs that are nutrient-dense and contain fiber, so that your body will take longer to break them down and digest, keeping you full longer. Carbs that have a low glycemic index (GI) will release energy at a steady rate throughout the day, keeping your blood sugar levels in check and preventing cravings.

These are the best carbs to eat for weight loss that you should try incorporating into your diet:

Barley – Barley can keep your appetite down and is also healthy. It contains soluble fiber, which can increase satiety, lower blood sugar and decrease cholesterol levels. Controlling blood sugar stave off cravings for the rest of the day. Barley can also reduce inflammation.

Quinoa – Considered a “superfood” by some, this grain contains almost double the amount of fiber compared with other grains. It is naturally gluten-free and is also higher in protein than any other grain. It contains all nine essential amino acids, which are necessary building blocks for lean muscle. Quinoa is also a good source of B vitamins.

Oatmeal – Half the fiber in oatmeal is soluble fiber, which takes longer to digest and keeps you feeling satiated for longer. It is also a complex carbohydrate, so it takes longer for your body to process it. Energy is released into your bloodstream at a steady rate, preventing cravings.

Whole Wheat Pasta – Whole wheat pasta is nutrient-rich and full of fiber, since it contains all 3 parts of the grain. A study conducted in Britain showed that less abdominal fat and lower BMI were linked to a diet that contained whole grains.

Sweet Potatoes – This type of root vegetable contains about 27 grams of carbs and helps increase the levels of a hormone called adiponectin. This hormone helps regulate blood sugar levels, which is useful for keeping cravings away. It also contains fiber and water, so it will keep you full without adding to your waistline.

Green Peas – A good source of the mineral zinc, green peas will help you keep colds away and also reduce hunger. This is because of a hormone called leptin, which sends a signal to your brain that your stomach is full.

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