Counting Carbohydrates in Vegetables


Counting Carbohydrates in Vegetables

A diet rich in vegetables can lower blood pressure, reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke, prevent some types of cancer, lower risk of eye and digestive problems, and have a positive effect on blood sugar. All vegetables contain some carbohydrates. 

Vegetables are categorized as starchy or non starchy.

Non Starchy Vegetables

In general, non starchy vegetables contain 5 grams of carb for 1 cup raw or ½ cup cooked. The difference in serving size is due to water loss when cooking. Think about how different raw spinach vs. cooked spinach looks. So, 2 cups of cooked spinach or 4 cups of fresh spinach is 20 grams of carbohydrates.

Starchy Vegetables

Starchy vegetables as their name implies have more starch, which means more carbohydrates, but they still have a lot of nutrients. 

Starchy vegetables are all measured as cooked. In general, ½ cup cooked starchy vegetables is 15 grams of carb. Here is some examples of a serving size for 15 grams of carb:

  • ½ cup corn, green peas, potato, or sweet potato
  • ¾ cup pumpkin puree (canned without added sugar)
  • 1 cup  butternut squash

Starchy vegetables should take up around 25% of your plate, while non-starchy vegetables should take up at least 50% of your plate.

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