What is the glycemic index?

Every third person in the world is suffering from various health issues due to high body fat. If you do not want to enter this group, you better get to know more about GI, the glycemic index.

It is a term used to standardize how each specific food increases your blood sugar. It has a scale from 0 to 100. The closer the value is to 100, the more rapidly that food will raise the sugar amount in your blood. Pure glucose is set as the reference point as its GI is considered to be 100, which means that every single bit of it will enter your blood vessels. All the other foods are listed in descending order regarding their own potential.

Everyone who is trying to watch his/her weight shall be aware of these values but those who are suffering from diabetes and obesity are at the top of this list. Consuming foods that are not increasing sugar levels is an important step in preventing diabetes, obesity and many other chronic diseases.


Glycemic index and blood sugar level

When foods with a high index are consumed, blood glucose rises very quickly. This is one of the symptoms of overweight and increases the risk of type 2 diabetes. Therefore, the more foods with a low index are preferred, the slower the rise in blood sugar. The following percentage intervals are drawing the outlines of high, moderate and low classes:


  • Below 55 means low (preferable)
  • 56 to 69 means moderate (tolerable)
  • 70 and above means high (very risky)
What is glycemic load?

Glycemic load is the total sugar load on blood sugar caused by the carbohydrate content of each gram of foods consumed at any meal. Carbohydrates are any type of simple or complex sugars like:

  • Glucose
  • Fructose
  • Sucrose
  • Maltose
  • Lactose
  • Starch

Foods with a high glycemic index also have a high glycemic load. If you want to learn how much extra load each food will give you, you can calculate it with a simple formula:

Glycemic load=(GI x weight of the consumed food in grams)/100).

Foods with a low glycemic index value

Here are some food and their list values that may help you while trying to keep fit and healthy:

  • Meats (0)
  • Yogurt and kefir (30 to 35)
  • Green leafy vegetables (spinach 15, fresh beans 30, zucchini 15)
  • Milk and dairy products
  • Wholegrain breads (40 to 50)
  • Grapefruit (22)
  • Pear (30)
  • Nuts (hazelnut 15, walnut 15, almond 15)


Benefits of low glycemic index foods

There is strong correlation between the type of food you consume and the incidence of obesity, diabetes and other chronic diseases. Therefore, carbohydrate foods in a healthy and regular diet should be balanced. When such a diet is followed, blood sugar rises moderately and your body performs its normal activities better. Foods with a high glycemic index cause excess insulin secretion. Excess insulin leads to body fat, which in turn leads to obesity.


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