Food Quality Powered by Ratios Carb to Fiber & Others
Introducing the first Nutrition Quality calculator. The NCS algorithm integrates the latest gut health & nutrition research, simplifying food decisions to a 100-Point scale. Powered by the Nutrient Ratios disrupted during food processing, it eliminates the need to carb & calorie count allowing you to simply choose high-quality foods. The microbiome & body will naturally do the rest. ~ Dr. Chris Damman
Try a Food Search
► Type & Add Items, + What is the score?
► Add Some Fiber, ≡ Does it change?
► Type a Wild Card, * What foods return?
► Sort the Results, 🔘 How do they rank?
DIVE DEEPER ON NUTRIENT RATIOS
Maximize green, moderate yellow, and minimize red scoring food combinations in both amount and frequency. See how scores and subscores change when you combine foods. Use ratio subscores to provide insights on how to synergize and supplement foods. Don’t fret about small point differences between foods or achieving the highest possible green score and do embrace a wide variety of green foods.
- Green (100-70): Maximize
- Yellow (69-60): Moderate
- Red (59-0): Minimize
The gut health nutrition algorithm designed by a University of Washington gastroenterologist incorporates below literature evidence on nutrient ratios, additives, and bioactives to inform an overall food quality score. It references the USDA’s FoodData Central for nutrient values of individual foods. Quality scores of 70-100 and ratio subscores of less than 2 correlate with whole foods and better-for-you processed foods.
Modern food processing has disrupted the natural ratios present in whole food matrixes, concentrating for simple carbohydrates, saturated fats, sodium, and additives while limiting fiber, unsaturated fats, potassium, and bioactives. Some of the latest research is suggesting that disrupted ratios that involve both concentrated and insufficient nutrients are important contributors to the rising rates of gut, metabolic, cardiovascular & neurologic disease.[1,2]
Nutrient ratios that provide a composite score of carb, fat, and micronutrient quality have been associated with a lower odds ratio for metabolic syndrome, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer, and lung disease as well as higher odds ratio for optimal cardiometabolic health.[3,4]
Carb quality (i.e. favorable carb to fiber ratio) is associated with better health: lower depression, smaller waist, lower diabetes rates[8–10], and less heart disease[11,12]. Fiber slows the absorption of carbs and is converted by the microbiome to factors like butyrate that help to efficiently process them once absorbed. For more information on fiber please follow this link.
Fat quality (i.e. favorable total fat to unsaturated fat ratio) is also associated with health: improved blood lipids and glycemic control. For more information on fats please follow this link.
Micronutrient quality (i.e. sodium to potassium ratio) has been associated with lower blood pressure and interventions have lead to decreased blood pressure and stroke.
Bioactive quality (i.e. low harmful additives and high bioactives). Some unnatural additives like certain sugar alternatives, trans fats, and some emulsifiers have been linked to poor health markers or outcomes while other natural bioactives like polyphenols/phytochemicals and short chain fatty acids (e.g. acetic acid, butyrate) have been linked to better health outcomes.
This resource is intended to be a dietary guide. Please consult your physician for any questions pertaining to medical advice.
MD-authored food & microbiome digests to demystify gut health.
1. Fardet A, Rock E. Chronic diseases are first associated with the degradation and artificialization of food matrices rather than with food composition: calorie quality matters more than calorie quantity. Eur J Nutr. 2022;61: 2239–2253. doi:10.1007/s00394-021-02786-8
3. Mozaffarian D, El-Abbadi NH, O’Hearn M, Erndt-Marino J, Masters WA, Jacques P, et al. Food Compass is a nutrient profiling system using expanded characteristics for assessing healthfulness of foods. Nature Food. 2021;2: 809–818. doi:10.1038/s43016-021-00381-y
4. O’Hearn M, Erndt-Marino J, Gerber S, Lauren BN, Economos C, Wong JB, et al. Validation of Food Compass with a healthy diet, cardiometabolic health, and mortality among U.S. adults, 1999–2018. Nat Commun. 2022;13: 1–14. doi:10.1038/s41467-022-34195-8
5. Mozaffarian RS, Lee RM, Kennedy MA, Ludwig DS, Mozaffarian D, Gortmaker SL. Identifying whole grain foods: a comparison of different approaches for selecting more healthful whole grain products. Public Health Nutr. 2013;16. doi:10.1017/S1368980012005447
6. Makhani SS, Davies C, George KA, Castro G, de la Vega PR, Barengo NC. Carbohydrate-to-Fiber Ratio, a Marker of Dietary Intake, as an Indicator of Depressive Symptoms. Cureus. 2021;13. doi:10.7759/cureus.17996
7. Sawicki CM, Lichtenstein AH, Rogers GT, Jacques PF, Ma J, Saltzman E, et al. Comparison of Indices of Carbohydrate Quality and Food Sources of Dietary Fiber on Longitudinal Changes in Waist Circumference in the Framingham Offspring Cohort. Nutrients. 2021;13: 997. doi:10.3390/nu13030997
8. AlEssa HB, Bhupathiraju SN, Malik VS, Wedick NM, Campos H, Rosner B, et al. Carbohydrate quality and quantity and risk of type 2 diabetes in US women. Am J Clin Nutr. 2015;102: 1543–1553. doi:10.3945/ajcn.115.116558
9. Hashimoto Y, Tanaka M, Miki A, Kobayashi Y, Wada S, Kuwahata M, et al. Intake of Carbohydrate to Fiber Ratio Is a Useful Marker for Metabolic Syndrome in Patients with Type 2 Diabetes: A Cross-Sectional Study. ANM. 2018;72: 329–335. doi:10.1159/000486550
10. AlEssa HB, Ley SH, Rosner B, Malik VS, Willett WC, Campos H, et al. High Fiber and Low Starch Intakes Are Associated with Circulating Intermediate Biomarkers of Type 2 Diabetes among Women. J Nutr. 2016;146: 306–317. doi:10.3945/jn.115.219915
11. Fontanelli M, Sales C, Liu J, Micha R, Mozaffarian D, Fisberg RM. The ≤ 10:1 carbohydrate to fiber ratio to identify healthy grain foods and its association with cardiometabolic risk factors in Brazil. Proc Nutr Soc. 2020;79: E309. doi:10.1017/S0029665120002578
12. AlEssa HB, Cohen R, Malik VS, Adebamowo SN, Rimm EB, Manson JE, et al. Carbohydrate quality and quantity and risk of coronary heart disease among US women and men. Am J Clin Nutr. 2018;107: 257–267. doi:10.1093/ajcn/nqx060
13. Schwingshackl L, Zähringer J, Beyerbach J, Werner SS, Heseker H, Koletzko B, et al. Total Dietary Fat Intake, Fat Quality, and Health Outcomes: A Scoping Review of Systematic Reviews of Prospective Studies. Ann Nutr Metab. 2021;77. doi:10.1159/000515058
14. Binia A, Jaeger J, Hu Y, Singh A, Zimmermann D. Daily potassium intake and sodium-to-potassium ratio in the reduction of blood pressure: a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. J Hypertens. 2015;33. doi:10.1097/HJH.0000000000000611
16. Suez J, Cohen Y, Valdés-Mas R, Mor U, Dori-Bachash M, Federici S, et al. Personalized microbiome-driven effects of non-nutritive sweeteners on human glucose tolerance. Cell. 2022;185. doi:10.1016/j.cell.2022.07.016
19. Del Bo’ C, Bernardi S, Marino M, Porrini M, Tucci M, Guglielmetti S, et al. Systematic Review on Polyphenol Intake and Health Outcomes: Is there Sufficient Evidence to Define a Health-Promoting Polyphenol-Rich Dietary Pattern? Nutrients. 2019;11: 1355. doi:10.3390/nu11061355
20. Valdes DS, So D, Gill PA, Kellow NJ. Effect of Dietary Acetic Acid Supplementation on Plasma Glucose, Lipid Profiles, and Body Mass Index in Human Adults: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. J Acad Nutr Diet. 2021;121. doi:10.1016/j.jand.2020.12.002
21. Amiri P, Hosseini SA, Ghaffari S, Tutunchi H, Ghaffari S, Mosharkesh E, et al. Role of Butyrate, a Gut Microbiota Derived Metabolite, in Cardiovascular Diseases: A comprehensive narrative review. Front Pharmacol. 2022;12. doi:10.3389/fphar.2021.837509
44 responses to “Carb Fiber Ratio Calculator for Gut Health Nutrition”
Love this, so simple but practical!
Very cool tool!
Interesting and looks easy to use. Also makes you think.
What a great way to see how healthy you are eating.
Absolutely outstanding tool. Very well designed infographics. Minor translation and vocabulary issues from American English to Australian English but this will only slightly slow down use.
Please let us know when the app is available in the app store
Will there be a way for us to be able to input food items with the nutritional facts if it doesn’t show on your list of foods? I’m in Australia so a lot of foods I use don’t show.
On https://gutbites.org/wp-content/uploads/2023/05/Slides-For-Website.pdf, you give fruit smoothies a score of 84, which may reflect their nutritional content, but isn’t it also true that smoothies are basically sugar bombs because all their sugar is available as free sugar, and are therefore not as healthy as they seem?
Thanks for the tool and carb:fiber ratio info.
1. What is the number right after CARBS?
eg. Avocado, raw – CARBS 1.13, Total Carb 8.53, Fiber 6.7g
Is lower COMPOSITE SCORE better than higher?
thank you this looks great.
What about high fiber versions of common foods such as tortillas, breads and crackers? Will they be listed by brand and not lumped into a category?
You mentioned the glycemic index. How does this factor into your algorithm?
How do I get the app?
My husband has been doing Noom with much success. This Red, Yellow, Green and how it calculates food look a lot like this. What is the difference?
Would love to try this, but it doesn’t seem to work. Can type in something, but the search bar doesn’t work. Am I doing something wrong?
This was eye opening. I thought I was getting fiber, but no. I haveve IBS- D. I follow the formal diet, foods listed high I can’t eat at all and done things on the low side I also don’t tolerate. ( gas, diarrhea). I don’t tolerate fiber, and am eating a high carb diet. Would like to change but don’t know how. Any suggestions would be welcome
how will i know when the app is available for iPhones?
I love this. Thanks for developing such a useful tool. Can’t wait for the app.
what the heck is NFS? In my world of retail, it means “not for sale”
I found calculator to be limited in current form as I add my salad ingredients, I can no longer see the list to add to the total