Using the Glycemic Index

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glycemic indexThe Glycemic Index, also known as GI, is an index of carbohydrate ranking from 0-100. The ranking system is based on the effect that certain carbohydrates have on your blood sugar, how they reduce insulin levels, and overall insulin resistance. Carbohydrates ranking 0-50 raise the blood sugar slowly and gently, keeping insulin levels low.

Carbohydrates ranking 51-100 raise the blood sugar more rapidly, and have been linked to diseases such as diabetes and coronary heart disease. Not to say they are not beneficial once in awhile, but definitely not meant to be consumed at every meal.

Low GI

Benefits of a low GI diet include the prevention of many more common dietary diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and many heart diseases. Other benefits of using the glycemic index are better weight management and control, even weight loss. Foods with a low GI keep you full longer, and keep blood sugar at a healthy and slow raising rate. Slow rising blood sugar has been proven to be extremely vital to overall health, the prevention of disease, and to boost immunity.

Some foods that have a low GI

Knowing the exact numbers of each food in the glycemic index is not necessary, just knowing whether they place in the low, medium, or high is the important information. Here is a list of basic low GI foods:

Veggies, Legumes and Beans such as:

Brown rice
Green beans
Peas
Black beans
Pinto beans
Kidney beans
Lima beans
Butter beans
Lentils

Fruits such as:

Apple
Apricot
Banana
Oranges
Peaches
Pears
Prunes
Grapefruit

Vegetables such as:

sweet potatoes
Yams
Non starchy vegetables
Carrots
Dark chocolate plain

These are just some of the low GI foods. If you are wondering where you can find an extensive list of the glycemic index you can look to the glycemic index foundation.

If you find yourself a little overwhelmed when using the glycemic index, replace one food from each meal that’s high on the index with one that is low. It is not necessary to eat all low GI foods all at once, you don’t want to shock your body, start slow. If you already have any of the dietary diseases listed above, talk to your doctor for more information on how you should go about eating low GI foods.

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