Carbohydrates are found in a variety of foods. Avoid consuming carbs that contain added sugar or a high amount of fat or sodium. These carbohydrates are high glycemic. This means that they have a large impact on your blood sugar response, which can be detrimental to your health. According to several large-scale studies by Harvard Medical School, consuming a high-glycemic diet can increase your risk for Type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
Avoid Added Sugar
Too much added sugar can lead to weight gain, which is a risk for heart disease and Type 2 diabetes. Added sugar may appear on the ingredient list of a food as sugar, molasses or syrup, or as sucrose, maltose or other names ending in "ose." Two forms of added sugar, fructose and high-fructose corn syrup, can actually increase your cholesterol and triglycerides, which are risks for heart disease. Sweetened beverages, such as soda, may contain high-fructose corn syrup and up to 40 grams of sugar in one serving. Avoid sweetened beverages, candy and other sweetened foods, which may include bakery items, cereals, granola bars, peanut butter, pickles, dressings and condiments.
Avoid Refined Grains
Refined grains are not whole grains, as they have had most of the fiber, vitamins and minerals removed during processing. They provide calories with few if any nutrients. Refined grains include white rice, and they are used to make white-flour cakes, pastas and breads; they are missing a lot of important nutrients. For example, 1 cup of steamed white rice and 1 cup of cooked brown rice have about 200 calories and 45 carbs each, but white rice has less protein, iron, calcium and B vitamins than brown rice.
Avoid Fried and Salty Carbs
The American Heart Association recommends that you avoid fried foods and consume less than 1,500 milligrams of sodium daily to reduce your risk for cardiovascular disease. Fried-carb foods are high in fat and can lead to high cholesterol and weight gain, while carb foods that are high in sodium can lead to high blood pressure. Carb foods to avoid include canned or instant soups and pastas, snack foods such as potato chips, and fast-food items such as French fries. These foods may be high in fat or sodium, or both. For example, one medium-sized fast-food order of French fries may contain around 20 grams of fat and 300 milligrams of sodium.
You do not have to completely eliminate added sugar, fried foods, refined grains and salty foods from your diet, but you should make a conscious effort to avoid them by making healthier choices. To satisfy a sweet craving, have a serving of a food containing natural sugar, such as an orange. Choose whole grains over refined grains -- for example, eat 100 percent whole wheat bread instead of white bread. Choose foods that are fresh rather than those preserved with high amounts of sodium. Instead of frying foods, eat them raw, steamed, grilled or baked. For example, have steamed vegetables or a side salad instead of French fries or potato chips.