2265 North Clybourn Avenue    Chicago, IL 60614    P: 773.296.6700     F: 773.296.1131

Complex Carbohydrates

What Is It?

Complex carbohydrates, primarily starches, are long chains of glucose molecules. These large glucose molecules are also known as polysaccharides which can be composed of various numbers of monosaccharides and disaccharides. Complex carbohydrates are polymers of simple sugars (monosaccharides) that are branched and may contain lipid or protein groups.

The three types of complex carbohydrates of nutritional importance are fiber, starch, and glycogen. Fiber refers to foods, mostly from plants, that the human body can not break down. Dietary fiber can be classified as soluble or insoluble. Examples of dietary fiber include beans, oatmeal, and the skins of fruits and vegetables. Starch, primarily found in grains, cereals, breads, and pastas, is the major source of carbohydrate in the diet. It is the storage form of carbohydrates in plants, comparable to glycogen in humans. Glycogen, commonly known as animal starch, is a starch-like substance in the liver and muscle tissue that is changed to glucose when it is needed for muscular work and for liberating heat. Glycogen represents the body’s carbohydrate stores. Glycogen is not counted as one of the complex carbohydrates in foods because it is not found in significant amounts in food.

Health Benefits

Complex carbohydrates are important for several reasons. Starch and glycogen represent energy sources for the body while fiber has strong links to disease prevention.

Fiber is not a single substance, but represents a large group of different compounds with a variety of effects in the human body. However, all types of fiber are parts of plants that can not be digested by enzymes in the human intestinal tract. High fiber foods may be beneficial because they tend to be rich in antioxidants and low in fat and calories. A fiber rich diet is also beneficial in alleviating and preventing conditions including constipation, diverticulosis, colon and rectal cancer, heart disease, breast cancer, diabetes, and obesity.


Join our Newsletter

Get health recommendations, delicious and time-saving recipes, medical news, supplement reviews, birthday discounts, and more!

Health Tips

Dr. Edelberg’s Health Tips contain concise bits of advice, medical news, nutritional supplement and pharmaceutical updates, and stress relief ideas. With every Health Tip, you’ll also receive an easy, delicious, and healthful recipe.

When you sign up to receive Health Tips, you can look forward to Dr. Edelberg’s smart and very current observations arriving in your in-box weekly. They’re packed with helpful information and are often slightly irreverent. One of the most common responses to the tips is “I wish my doctor talked to me like this!”

Quick Connect

Get One Click Access to our

patient-portal

The Knowledge Base

Patient education is an integral part of our practice. Here you will find a comprehensive collection of staff articles, descriptions of therapies and nutritional supplements, information addressing your health concerns, and the latest research on nutritional supplements and alternative therapies.

Telemedicine – Now Available at WholeHealth Chicago

In order to maintain your continuity of care, WholeHealth Chicago now offers telemedicine appointments with most of our practitioners. During a telemedicine visit, you and your healthcare provider can review medical history, discuss symptoms, arrange for prescriptions, and more. When necessary, labs and diagnostic imaging can be ordered from a facility near your home, and our Natural Apothecary can ship supplements quickly to your door.

Please contact Patient Services for details and scheduling a telemedicine appointment, or to change a regular appointment to telemedicine by calling 773-296-6700.

We’re looking forward to meeting with you in our virtual consultation room soon.

DIAGNOSE-IT-YOURSELF: COVID-19

Far and away, the commonest phone call/e mail I receive asks about COVID-19 diagnosis.
Just print this out, tape it on your refrigerator door, and stay calm.

ALLERGIES

• Runny nose
• Sneezing
• Red, swollen eyes
• Itchy eyes and nose
• Tickly throat
• No fever

COLD
• Runny nose
• Sneezing
• Sore throat
• Mild muscle aches
• Mild dry cough
• Rarely a low fever

STREP THROAT
• Painful sore throat
• Hurts to swallow
• Swollen glands in neck
• Fever

FLU (Standard seasonal flu)
• Fever
• Dry cough (no mucus)
• Sudden onset over few hours
• Headache
• Sore throat
• Fatigue, sometimes quite severe
• Muscle aches, sometimes quite severe
• Rarely, diarrhea

CORONAVIRUS-COVID 19
• Shortness of breath
• Fever (usually above 100 degrees)
• Dry cough (no mucus)
• Slow onset (2-14 days)
• Mild muscle aches
• Mild fatigue
• Mild sneezing

Recent Health Tips

  • Six Commonly Missed Diagnoses: B12 Deficiency

    You’re pretty sure you know your body and you tell your doctor you’re just not feeling right. You’re tired, maybe a little depressed, a bit achy. Maybe your digestion is “off.” The list of foods you can’t seem to enjoy is definitely longer. Your doctor’s empathic, not at all dismissive of your symptoms, but after a physical exam and some apparently appropriate tests she can’t Read More

  • What is Low-Dose Naltrexone (LDN) and Can It Help Me?

    Ten years ago April marks the anniversary of the first time I wrote about low-dose naltrexone (LDN). I described it as an orphan drug, meaning that its patent had long ago expired, that it was generic, and that it was not owned by any one company. For these reasons and because they’d never recoup their investment, no Big Pharma company was interested in pursuing the Read More

  • Can’t Get Vaccinated? Here’s Why

    Once a week, the Chicago Sun-Times asks random people “How hard have you found it to get a Covid-19 vaccination?” and devotes a page to the responses. Virtually every answer is a variation of “I’ve tried to sign up on all the websites every day at all times of day and night and appointments are never available.” The situation is worse for people who aren’t Read More

Join our Discount Program

Member benefits include 10% off all your purchases. Low, one-time membership fee of $25 ($35 for family).

MORE INFORMATION

Join our Newsletter

Get health recommendations, recipes, medical news, supplement reviews, birthday discounts, and more!