Why should I choose low glycemic foods? First you need to understand what does glycemic even mean. Glycemic Index, (GI), is a measurement system that ranks foods according to their effect on your blood sugar levels. This was created in 1980 by a man named David Jenkins who is a Canadian Professor.
Here are the Glycemic ratings:
High- 70 or more
Medium- 56- 69
Low- 55 or more
Why should I choose low glycemic foods?
Foods that are low in Glycemic Index are slowly digested and absorbed and this causes a slower rise in your blood sugar levels. So that is why so many dieticians and nutritionists suggest eating foods that are low in GI because they believe it is healthier. The foods that raise blood sugar levels depends on how much you eat, depends on the type of carbs and the nutrient composition.
There have been some studies that suggest that low GI diets reduce blood sugar levels in people with diabetes. And there has been some studies that suggest that high GI diets have been linked to a higher risk to Type 2 diabetes.
Here Are The Health Benefits To Low GI Diets Based On Studies:
- Reduce the risk of heart disease- research has shown that high GI diets heightened risk of heart disease.
- It may reduce the risk of cancer- research has shown that high GI diets are associated with all types of cancer such as breast cancer and colorectal cancer and others.
- It may help you lose weight—some research has shown that people on low GI diets have lost weight and improved fat loss.
- Improved cholesterol levels- recent research has shown that low GI diets are linked to low cholesterol levels.
Why should I choose low glycemic foods?
Here are the healthy low GI Foods you can eat:
- Grains: such as barley, wheat bread, quinoa.
- Rice: such as basmati, brown, long grain.
- Vegetables: broccoli, spinach, asparagus, green peas.
- Fruit: such as oranges, bananas, apples, pears, apricots, strawberries.
- Legumes: such as kidney beans, lentils, chickpeas, baked beans.
- Dairy: such as soy milk, almond milk, yogurt, cheese, coconut milk.
Some healthy low GI snacks are:
- Unsalted nuts
- Carrot Sticks
- Cup of Strawberries or Raisins
- Several teaspoons of peanut butter
- Greek Yogurt
“The foods that raise blood sugar levels depends on how much you eat, depends on the type of carbs and the nutrient composition.”
The bottom line: is, you want to make sure that your diet is balanced with protein, carbs, and fats regardless of the GI value. If you focus on balance, you will be able to manage your weight and establish long term health with minimal chronic health diseases.
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Ojo O, Ojo OO, Adebowale F, Wang XH. The Effect of Dietary Glycemic Index on Glycaemia in Patients with Type 2 Diabetes: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials. Nutrients. 2018;10(3):373. Published 2018 Mar 19. doi:10.3390/nu10030373
Alan W Barclay, Peter Petocz, Joanna McMillan-Price, Victoria M Flood, Tania Prvan, Paul Mitchell, Jennie C Brand-Miller, Glycemic index, glycemic load, and chronic disease risk—a meta-analysis of observational studies, The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Volume 87, Issue 3, March 2008, Pages 627–637, https://doi.org/10.1093/ajcn/87.3.627
Sieri, S., Agnoli, C., Pala, V. et al. Dietary glycemic index, glycemic load, and cancer risk: results from the EPIC-Italy study. Sci Rep 7, 9757 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-017-09498-2
De Rougemont, A., Normand, S., Nazare, J., Skilton, M., Sothier, M., Vinoy, S., & Laville, M. (2007). Beneficial effects of a 5-week low-glycaemic index regimen on weight control and cardiovascular risk factors in overweight non-diabetic subjects. British Journal of Nutrition, 98(6), 1288-1298. doi:10.1017/S0007114507778674