We’re all familiar with the low and no-carb diets that claim to make us lose weight in a hurry, but is that really healthy? As it turns out, healthy carbs are actually an essential part of our diet. And they’re also you body’s primary source of energy.

What Are Good Carbs?

  • Natural carbohydrates
  • Take longer to digest
  • Give you more energy
  • Found in whole grain foods and legumes

What Are Bad Carbs?

  • Often found in processed foods
  • Have little to no nutritional value
  • Digested quickly
  • Won’t satisfy hunger

How To Tell If It’s A Good Carb Or Bad Carb

It’s not hard to determine whether or not a carb is good or bad. All you need to have to do is look at the nutrition label and use a little common sense. You always want to look at the sugar and fiber content in food. This is a great rule of thumb to help you decide.

  • Good carb: low in sugar / high in fiber
  • Bad carb: high in sugar / low in fiber

You can also check out this carb infographic which goes into a lot of detail.

Top 5 Foods With Healthy Carbs

Black Beans

Carbs: 38g per cup / 12% daily need

  • Heart healthy
  • Low in fat
  • High in antioxidants
  • Contains a ton of healthy minerals


Carbs: 27g per 1/2 cup / 9% daily need

  • Fiber rich
  • Lower cholesterol
  • Helps with weight loss
  • Lowers risk of heart disease


Carbs: 15g per cup / 5% daily need

  • Yellow squash and zucchini have a little less
  • High in Vitamin C
  • Helps reduce risk of diabetes

Quinoa (cooked)

Carbs: 39g per cup / 13% daily need

  • Ancient grain / first cultivated 5,000 years ago
  • Almost like eating a multi-vitamin
  • Lowers risk of high blood pressure
  • Lowers risk of certain cancers


Carbs: 31g per cup / 10% daily need

  • High in antioxidants
  • Digestive aide
  • May lower risk of colon cancer
  • Helps control diabetes

Examples of Bad Carbs

These foods should be avoided and have little to no nutritional value. They pack on the pounds!

  • White bread
  • White rice
  • White pasta
  • Soda
  • Candy
  • Artificial syrups
  • Refined sugar
  • Pastries
  • Desserts

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