What Are Complex Carbohydrates - Definition And List Of Foods

What Are Complex Carbohydrates - Definition And List Of Foods
Image: enforma.salud180.com

We've all heard of carbohydrates and most people are able to identify many of the foods in this group. However carbohydrates are grouped into simple and complex, each with their own nutritionally different benefits that help us in different ways. When it comes to enhancing our physical training and getting the maximum energy from food, complex carbohydrates are the best option, though we do not always know how to choose them. Therefore at OneHowTo.com we explain what complex carbohydrates are.

Steps to follow:

Once ingested, carbohydrates are processed in the body to become glucose, which is used to produce the energy we need on a daily basis. All carbohydrates go through this process, however complex carbohydrates do it more efficiently, converting into glucose more slowly, allowing us to take more advantage of the energy they provide throughout the day.

Complex carbohydrates are also ideal to make your brain work better and faster, making you think more clearly.


That is why complex carbohydrates are recommended as a food that should be present in the diet of a sportsperson or those who train frequently. They slowly raise levels of blood sugar and provide a lot of energy.

Though it is thought that carbohydrates need to be removed from diets when losing weight, complex carbohydrates will actually help your metabolism work faster and will help you feel full for longer, thus avoiding snacking.


Many foods that compose the complex carbohydrates group are cereals, which should preferably be consumed as whole grains so that we can also take advantage of the fiber that they offer. Among them we can highlight:

  • Normal or brown rice
  • Oats,which are full of health benefits
  • Wheat germ
  • Bran
  • Rye
  • Quinoa

It is very important to consume these foods as whole grains to really take advantage of all their nutritional benefits.

Image: nuriapuig.blogspot.com.es

But these are not the only complex carbohydrates we can find, in fact many foods we commonly consume at breakfast or other meals are complex carbohydrates, such as:

  • Pasta
  • Bread
  • Potatoes
  • Legumes such as lentils, beans or chick peas
  • Cassava
  • Corn
Image: clubmegamusculo.com

It is important to include complex carbohydrates in our diet, preferably wholegrain, in order to obtain energy.

Although it is believed that carbohydrates are fattening, really we should not be without this food group because it is fundamental to our health. That is why complex carbohydrates such as whole grains and legumes play an important role in the food pyramid.

However, you should take into account certain aspects when eating carbohydrates, such as learning the best time to eat carbohydrates and how to avoid simple carbohydrates.

This article is merely informative, oneHOWTO does not have the authority to prescribe any medical treatments or create a diagnosis. We invite you to visit your doctor if you have any type of condition or pain.

If you want to read similar articles to What Are Complex Carbohydrates - Definition And List Of Foods, we recommend you visit our Healthy living category.