In my earlier post, i talked about the how glycemic index (GI) affects weight loss. Here is a more detailed explanation of what it’s about.
GI is the ranking of carbohydrates on a scale of 0-100 according to the extent they raise blood sugar levels after consumption of food that contains carbohydrates.
High GI means that the carbohydrates in food breaks down quickly and thus releases the glucose into the blood quicker. Low GI means the opposite; slow digestion and slower release of glucose into the blood stream. Diets that are low GI have shown to improve both glucose and lipid levels in people with diabetes and aids in weigh loss because it helps to control appetite.
- High GI: 70 and above (Whole wheat bread, corn flakes, watermelon, potato)
- Medium GI: 56 to 69 (Pumpkin, honey, popcorn, pineapple)
- Low GI: 55 and below (Chocolate, soy milk, carrots, apple)
Should I eat a low GI diet?
A low GI diet is helpful for everyone. It can help those with weight problems, diabetes, low blood sugar, low HDL levels and help increase physical activities or sports.
Switching to low GI meals
First check your daily meals to find out where most of the carbohydrates is coming from (usually it is the rice, noodles, breakfast cereals, potatoes). Aim to swap some high GI foods with low GI foods. You don’t need to exclude all high GI foods from your diet but instead choose more low GI foods.
For example switching cornflakes for wholegrain cereals/rolled oats/bran. White bread for multigrain bread. Examples of high GI foods include short grain rice, pumpkin and watermelon. Meat, eggs and oils have no or very little carbohydrates. So they may not have a GI value.
The GI is not meant to be the only determinant when choosing foods. Look at the overall nutritional quality and quantity of your food.
Tip: Include 1 low GI food in every meal.
Do note that the glycemic index is not to be confused with glycemic load values.
To find out about a specific food’s GI, you can visit nutritiondata.com
GYLCEMIC INDEX OF BUCKWHEAT