The Glycemic Index Diet, or GI Diet for short, is a diet based on eating foods that have a low impact on your blood sugar levels. If you have any diabetic or related problems however, it’s definitely not a good idea to follow a diet that alters your blood sugar levels, without a physician’s advice. For those of you that haven’t heard of it, the Glycemic Index is a widely-used measure invented in 1981 by David Jenkins and Thomas Wolever of the University of Toronto, to categorise foods into the impact that make on your body, in particular your blood sugar levels. The GI is the newest method for classifying foods which contain carbs, according to how fast they raise blood-sugar levels inside the body. More simple, foods with higher GI values raise blood glucose faster, thus making them less beneficial to blood-sugar control than foods which score lower.
The Glycemic Index Scale (GI Scale) shows how fast 50 grams of carbohydrate in a particular food is absorbed into the bloodstream as blood-sugar (bloog-glucose). The Scale ranges from 1 to 100, with glucose being used as main reference and rated at GI 100. Using the Glycemic Index, carbs-containing foods are classified in:
• High Glycemic Index Foods (GI 70+). These products cause a rapid rise in blood-sugar levels. Examples of high GI foods are: White bread, french fries,watermelon etc.
• Intermediate Glycemic Index Foods (GI 55-69). These foods contribute to a medium rise in blood-glucose. Some examples: Baked potatoes, honey, mango etc.
• Low Glycemic Index Foods (GI 54 or less), causing a slower rise in blood-sugar. Examples: Most vegetables (carrots, cauliflower, onions, cabbage, etc), fruits (cherries, plums, grapefruit, peaches, etc) instant noodles, brown rice, nuts and raisins, whole milk, whole wheat bread and so on.
On the GI Diet, you avoid high GI foods because they have two big disadvantages. Firstly they give you a rush of energy that doesn’t last so you end up with a lack of energy afterwards and thus get hungry very quickly and want to eat more; not good for weight loss. Secondly, you end up with a lot of energy in your blood after eating these high GI foods and your body accesses the energy in your blood first before moving onto the energy stored in your fat; when following weight loss plans you want your body to be accessing the fat stored in your body to reduce your weight. By following the GI Diet plan you will learn to eat low GI diet foods that will fill you up for longer and give you energy, thus reducing your cravings for bad foods.
The GI Diet foods that you can and can’t eat are provided in a list when you start the diet. For breakfast, low GI foods include things like bran and oats, however most branded cereals, including Cornflakes, Total and Branflakes, are classed as high GI and therefore not permitted. For other meals the staple foods that you can have include yam, brown rice and wheat pasta but things like instant white rich and fresh mashed potatoes are banned. Most vegetables and beans are low GI and therefore oaky to eat under the GI Diet Plan, but you have to avoid beetroot, pumpkin, parsnips, and beans in tomato sauce. Most dairy is okay too except for ice cream, but that should be obvious!
People worldwide have had lots of success with the GI Diet plan as it is a diet based on sound scientific evidence and, as you’ve read the science behind it above, you should be able to really believe that it works and this will motivate you to give it a try. It is one of the better diets out there today and definitely worth looking into.