The Glycemic Index for food--GI-- is a scale from 1 to 100 that tells you how rapidly a particular carbohydrate turns into sugar.
This number is based on the amount of glucose (sugar) in your food with 100 being pure glucose. All other food is then measured relative to the number 100.
When you concentrate on eating foods that are on the low end of the Glycemic Index for food, you will have control over how your body utilizes sugar and you can concentrate on eating foods that are on the low end of the scale. Eating foods with a low GI are considered complex carbohydrates.
Complex carbohydrates are good for stabilizing blood sugar and your overall health. When your blood sugar is stable, your immune system is stronger, you will have more overall energy and your appetite will stay in check.
Foods that are on the high end of the glycemic index are considered in the range of 70-100. Eating these foods will cause a sudden rise in your blood sugar, followed by a sudden drop, causing your body to start a cycle of hunger, craving and headaches. Eating foods with a high GI number keeps your body in a constant state of confusion, trying to compensate for fluctuating blood sugar levels.
The main premise of eating the low glycemic way is to eat foods that are on lower end of the glycemic index. Since the GI ranges from 0 to 100, high glycemic foods are considered to be those foods that are above 70. A food that is on the lower end of the spectrum –below 55-- will not spike your blood sugar level, while a food with a higher number has a higher glucose level will which in turn will leave you irritable and craving more foods that have a high glycemic index.
How you choose to prepare your foods can change the glycemic level of the meal. A food that has a low glycemic index such as chicken will become a high glycemic food if you fry the chicken. An easy way to choose a food with a low glycemic index number is select foods that tend to have high fiber. This will balance your blood sugar and will keep you feeling full longer. Meat, fish and poultry that are grilled or baked are considered low glycemic foods.
Choosing processed foods, potatoes, sugars, white flour pasta, white bread, and white rice will rate on the high end of the glycemic index for food as well. On the other end of the blood sugar spectrum are foods that are low glycemic foods such as non starchy vegetables, apples, pears, strawberries, and grapefruit.
|Food||Glycemic Index Number|
|Whole Grain Spaghetti||37|
|All Bran Cereal||38|