Almost anything you use to thicken things is a starch and adds a small amount of carbs and calories. Basically whether you consider oats and barley useless carbs depends on what kind of diet you are on. You would obviously not eat barley or oats if you are on Atkins. If you are on South Beach and they don't trigger they would be considered good carbs and it would take very little to thicken soup. I consider whole grains like whole grain barley and quinoa much superior to grains like bread which is highly processed. Barley is loaded with soluble fiber and naturally occurring selenium and other good minerals. Both barley and oats lower blood cholesterol. Arrowroot is similar to cornstarch in carbs - If I remember right a tsp around 2.5gms of carbs. I use arrowroot in some recipes. That being said I don't consume many grains nor thickeners and get most of my carbs chiefly from fruits and veggies which to me are superior to any grains, especially things like instant oatmeal. If you eat oats steel cut are preferable.
Edited by: MORTICIAADDAMS at: 10/2/2011 (17:38)
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