Complex Carbs vs Simple Carbs - What You Need to Know?

Complex carbs are starches and dietary fibers that take longer to digest and provide sustainable energy. These complex carbs offer fiber, vitamin B and E, phytochemicals, and healthful fats which help you control cholesterol.


As we all know, Carbohydrates (Carbs) are one of the main macronutrients; which work as fuel for the brain and muscles. Nowadays, some diets and weight loss programs encourage cutting your carb count or avoiding them altogether to lose weight. Whatever your fitness goal is, you can achieve it without taking away all the carbs from your plate. As carbohydrates are an essential part of a well-balanced diet, you need to find the right carbs to eat rather than eliminating them from your meal plan.

To find the right sources of carbs, you need to have some knowledge about simple carbs and complex carbs, the difference between them, and their pros & cons.

The Difference Between Simple and Complex Carbs

Simple carbs are basically sugars found in raw and brown sugar, milk, fruit juice, and corn syrups. These simple carbs are added to foods that we regularly have, including soda, baked treats, packaged cookies, ice cream, breakfast cereal, etc. All the simple carbs are not necessarily the bad ones. For instance, being simple carbs, fruits, milk, and veggies are excellent sources of vitamins and minerals. On the other hand, packaged foods made with refined grains have little nutritional value and are considered empty calories.

Complex carbs are starches and dietary fibers that take longer to digest and provide sustainable energy. These complex carbs offer fiber, vitamin B and E, phytochemicals, and healthful fats which help you control cholesterol and maintain a healthy weight. Some of the primary sources of complex carbs are brown and wild rice, barley, quinoa, potatoes, corn, nuts, beans, chickpeas, lentils, etc.

Benefits of Complex Carbs:

You must have heard people saying about the good and bad carbs. In general, simple or refined carbs are considered bad carbs, and complex carbs or whole grains are considered good carbs. This is because Complex carbs or starches contain a long complex chain of sugar molecules. And so, the body takes a longer time to break down and digest the complex structure compared to simple carbs.

Some significant health benefits of complex carbs are -

  • Promotes and optimizes muscle growth and recovery.
  • Keeps blood sugar level steady.
  • Regulates craving by keeping you full.
  • Improves digestive health.
  • Sustains energy for a longer time.
  • Helps the body to relax.
  • Ensures optimal brain function.
  • Lower the risk of heart diseases.

The key to long-term health is to choose your micronutrient sources wisely. The best way to stay fit is to eat more natural foods rich in vitamins, minerals, and fibers. So do your research, and keep a keen eye on the nutrition labels to stay healthy and guard your body against long-term complications.

Language: English - Odia - Change