What Is Glycemic Index

The glycemic index, simply put, is a measure of how quickly a food causes our blood sugar levels to rise. Glycemic index is a number. It gives you an idea about how fast your body converts the carbs in a food into glucose. Two foods with the same amount of carbohydrates can have different glycemic index numbers.

The smaller the number, the less impact the food has on your blood sugar.

  • 55 or less = Low (good)
  • 56- 69 = Medium
  • 70 or higher = High (bad)

Foods with a low GI are digested and absorbed at a slower rate, and, subsequently, cause a slower rise in blood sugar levels. These are typically rich in fiber, protein and/or fat. Keep in mind that a low GI doesn’t mean a food is high in nutrients. You still need to choose healthy foods from all five food groups.

THINGS TO KEEP IN MIND:

Glycemic Index Can Change

That number is a starting point on paper. It could be different on your plate, depending on several things (as mentioned below).

Preparation

Fat, fiber, and acid (such as lemon juice or vinegar) can lower the glycemic index. The longer you cook starches like pasta, the higher their glycemic index will be.

Ripeness

The glycemic index of fruits like bananas goes up as they ripen.

Other foods eaten at the same time

Bring down the overall glycemic index of a meal by combining a high-glycemic index food with foods that have lower ones.

Other factors

Your age, how active you are, and how fast you digest food also affect how your body reacts to carbs.

 

 

 

HERE ARE SOME EXAMPLES OF FOODS WITH A LOWER GI READING:

Written By:

Salome Scholtz RD(SA)

Salomé Scholtz RD(SA)

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