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Old 01-21-2004, 09:13 AM   #11
David Wood
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I believe it's that the (generally) higher fiber content of complex carbs slows digestion, causing the carb load to reach the bloodstream over a longer period of time. The net result is a smaller but longer rise in blood sugar (a "rise" rather than a "spike"), triggering less of an insulin reaction.

Dave
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Old 01-21-2004, 09:35 AM   #12
Alexander Karatis
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I was under the impression that the generally higher GI and GL of complex carbs will do the exact oposite, producing a spike in blood sugar and thus should not be favoured over simple carbs when seeking to maintain higher energy outputs over prolonged periods of time.

And concerning the fiber content of "good" complex carbs, vegetables and greenery also contain plenty.

Thus: Higher GI/GL + Fiber = Large insulin spike

VS

: Lower GI/GL + Fiber = Small insulin reaction

Or is my logic flawed somewhere?
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Old 01-21-2004, 10:25 AM   #13
David Wood
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Hmmm . . . we may be saying the same thing (I think).

In general, more fiber in any particualar carbohydrate will slow digestion, and reduce insulin reaction (I think).

So, I would add two more "equations" to your mix:

(These are overly simplistic, but directionally correct.)

High GI => large insulin spike

High GI + fiber => Lowers GI => lower insulin spike

Low GI => small/no insulin spike

Low GI + fiber => Lowers GI even further? => lower insulin spike? (not sure if the effect here really matters, assuming the source of carbohydrates was already a relatively low GI product).

As I understand it, fats or oils combined with carbohydrates generally have same effect as fiber . . . slows digestion, spreads out the carbohydrate uptake over time, and reduces the peak blood sugar effect, which reduces the size of the insulin response.

Also, as I understand it, "vegetables and greenery" certainly contain significant fiber (usually), and are therefore (usually) considered both Low/Lower GI and/or "complex" carbohydrates.

The whole dichotomy between "complex" and "simple" or "refined" carbohydrates is a major (over)simplification. Things don't really separate that completely or cleanly into good and bad categories.

Take corn on the cob, for instance. It's pretty high in simple sugars (high GI, "bad"), but also relatively high in fiber. So is it good or bad? Who knows? I want to know if it's fresh, and does it taste good?

In general, you won't go wrong if you choose foods that are:


-- minimally processed, which means they must be fresh, or they would have spoiled
-- as close to its natural state as possible
-- free of additives, dyes, chemicals, etc.

You could sum it up more simply: If it's not food, don't eat it. "Food" is stuff that nature grew, without the intervention of a chemist (sorry to all the chemists on the board).

Yes, I'm a big fan of modern living, and I'll happily eat food from cans, or food that has been heavily chemicalized to preserve it, if there are no other choices available. I'm not a Luddite.

I don't think you have to go nuts about this, and I certainly have consumed plenty of chemicals in my day without dying (yet) . . . but those are not the better choices.


Dave
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Old 01-21-2004, 10:29 AM   #14
David Wood
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One other comment on Guns, Germs, and Steel . . . not only is it a great book, but it has one of the better titles of all time.

I mean, who can resist a book with that combination of elements in the name?

The only book title like that that I thought was even better was "Women, Fire, and Dangerous Things" by George Lakoff (it's on linguistics and how we form categories . . . there's some language out there where those three items in the title are all considered in the same 'category').

Dave
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Old 01-21-2004, 12:39 PM   #15
Alexander Karatis
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Dave, forgive me but doesn't nature provide us with simple carbs only? I was under the impression that no complex carbohydrate source would be classified as "paleo food"...
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Old 01-21-2004, 08:06 PM   #16
David Wood
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Hmmm . . .

Maybe we're using the terms differently.

I think the phrase "complex carbs" is usually (in American English) applied to foods that are relatively "whole".

They can be contrasted with foods that are relatively "refined" (i.e., processed).

The simplest example I can think of is wheat or wheat flour: "whole wheat" or "whole wheat flour" contains the entire seed (berry) of the wheat kernel: germ, endo-something layer, starch layer, and the outer husk (the bran), which is technically indigestible, and would be listed in an American "nutrition analysis" as "insoluble fiber".

"White flour" (out of which we Americans make that abomination of a product "white bread" (which could be used for wall putty if you get it the right degree of damp)) is made by discarding everything except the starch layer. All of the bran (the fiber) and all of the germ (where the oil and Vitamin E reside) are lost.

So . . . the "whole wheat" is the "complex carb", and the "white flour" is the "simple" carb (in the version of the language that I understand).

Of course, I'm sure it's more complex than this. Properly speaking, "simple carbohydrate" is the name for the highly-digestible molecules like sucrose and fructose . . . which enter the system fairly rapidly. (I'm not sure where lactose (milk sugar) or other sugars fall on the continuum).

But real foods are never just sucrose or fructose (even sugar cane isn't PURE sucrose). American manufactured foods tend be overly loaded with "simple", though . . . they've been stripped of fiber or other stuff, and, in our frenzy for "fat-free" foods, they've been pumped up with HFCS (High Fructose Corn Syrup) until they're so sweet they can't spoil.

So, in this categorization I'm using, "complex carbs" would refer to foods that are eaten with the additional elements that nature (usually) packages them with (e.g., whole fruit, including as much of the skin as is edible). "Simple carbs" refers to foods stripped down to as much sugar, and as little else, as possible (e.g., filtered, 'no pulp' orange juice).

Dave
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Old 01-22-2004, 01:43 AM   #17
Alexander Karatis
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Hmm...I see what you're saying. But I was fairly certain that simple vs complex had to do with the sugar molecule and its structure.

One of us is definately wrong, and I'm thinking that it's you Dave!:biggrin:LOL!

Seriously though I'm waiting for someone else to step in here because I'm sure there are a lot of misconceptions in all posts by the both of us.
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Old 01-22-2004, 07:16 PM   #18
bill fox
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I am interviewing Ori for the next issue of Circular Strength Mag. The topic of this thread, along with many others that have been discussed here are covered. I'll announce it here when it's on-line.

BTW - check out my new website
www.movingcenterfitness.com

Bill
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Old 01-22-2004, 08:24 PM   #19
Kevin Roddy
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Bill - Sounds exciting! I'll be looking forward to reading that.

Also, nice site. Is that you in the picture? You're looking pretty mean with that clubbell raised like that.
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Old 01-22-2004, 08:29 PM   #20
bill fox
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That is me. By the 10th time I tried to hold that thing over my head I was feeling pretty mean too.
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