The most harmful foods are sources of refined starch, which fall into three main categories

  •  sugar
  • fiber
  • starch

Starch is the most commonly used type of carbohydrate and an important source of energy for many people. Usually the sources are cereals and root crops. Starch is classified as a complex carbohydrate because it is made up of many sugar molecules bonded together. Traditionally, complex carbohydrates are seen as healthier options. Starch gradually releases blood sugar instead of causing it to rise sharply. Many of the starches are highly purified. They can actually cause your blood sugar levels to rise sharply, even though they are classified as complex carbohydrates.

The most harmful foods
The most harmful foods

This is because many of the refined starches are devoid of almost all nutrients and fiber. Simply put, they contain empty calories and provide little nutritional benefit. Many studies also show that a diet rich in refined starches is associated with a higher risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease and weight gain. Here is a list of some high-starch foods that are good to stay away from.

Corn flour

Corn flour (74%) is a type of coarse flour obtained by grinding dried corn kernels. It is naturally gluten-free, which means it is safe to eat if you have celiac disease. Although corn contains some nutrients, it is very high in carbohydrates and starch. One cup (159 g) contains 126 grams of carbohydrates, of which 117 grams (74%) are starch. If you choose cornmeal, choose whole grains. Otherwise it loses some fiber and nutrients.

2. Rice Krispies (72.1%) Rice is a popular cereal made from red rice. It is simply a combination of rice and sugar paste formed into crispy rice forms. They are often enriched with vitamins and minerals. One ounce (28 grams) contains more than 1/3 of your daily needs for thiamine, riboflavin, iron and vitamins B6 and B12. However, Rice Krispies are extremely high in starch. 28 grams of rice snack contains 20.2 grams of starch or 72.1% by weight. If Rice Krispies are on your daily menu, consider choosing a healthier breakfast alternative.

Millet flour

One cup (119 g) of millet flour contains 83 grams of starch or 70% by weight. Millet flour is also gluten-free and rich in magnesium, phosphorus, manganese and selenium. Pearl millet is the most common type of millet. Although pearl millet is very nutritious, there is some evidence that it can affect thyroid function. However, the effects in humans are unclear, so more research is needed.

Rice krispies
Rice krispies

4. White flour (68%) Whole grain wheat has three main components. The outer layer is known as bran, the germ is the reproductive part of the grain, and the endosperm is its food. White flour is prepared by removing bran and germ, which are full of nutrients and fiber. This leaves only the endosperm, which is processed into white flour. It is usually low in nutrients and mostly contains empty calories. In addition, endosperm gives white flour with a high starch content. One cup (120 g) of white flour contains 81.6 grams of starch or 68% by weight.

5. Salty crackers (67.8%) Salty crackers are thin square biscuits made with refined wheat flour, yeast and baking soda. Although salty crackers are low in calories, they are also low in vitamins and minerals. In addition, they are very high in starch. For example, a serving of five standard salty crackers (15 grams) contains 11 grams of starch or 67.8% by weight. If you like salty biscuits, choose ones that are made with 100% wholemeal flour and seeds.