A low glycemic diet will help you deal with conditions such as diabetes and cholesterol, as well as reach a healthier weight. It will help reduce your intake of processed grains, sugar, and other high glycemic foods which are bad for your overall health.
Whether you start this diet to lose weight, reduce cravings, or control blood sugar, it’ll benefit your health in many surprising ways. (1)
Avoiding high glycemic foods like desserts, cereals, rolls, or sweetened beverages will open up more room in your diet for nutrient-rich foods with a low glycemic load. These include lots of lean proteins, healthy fats, and vegetables.
Eating low glycemic foods will prevent you from overeating due to moodiness, cravings for more carbs, and blood sugar swings.
So, these are just some of the reasons to start consuming foods with a low glycemic index (low GI). (2)
Foods with a low GI have a glycemic value below 50, those with a medium GI have a value ranging from 50 to 70, and the foods with a high glycemic index have a glycemic value ranging from 70 to 100.
But, how to choose the right low GI foods for you when buying groceries? Except for apps like Glyndex or My Glycemic Index, you can buy the right ingredients with the help of a few general guidelines: (3)
Choose whole-grain bread covered with visible whole grains. Also, don’t throw away fruit and vegetable peels but add them to your dishes for a higher fiber and nutrient content. Eat fresh or frozen green vegetables every day. Moreover, choose baked goods whose content includes at least some whole grain flours.
For example, fully ripe bananas have double the glycemic index as under-ripe ones. And, have in mind that tropical fruits are higher in sugar, whereas berries are lower.
These include instant rice, oats, pasta, and potatoes. These foods are chopped, steamed, and cooked before being packed, which is why they cook and digest quickly. But, the versions which need more time to cook, such as steel-cut oats, and brown rice, contain more nutrients and fiber than their counterparts.
Puffed cereal grains break down quickly, so their glucose is also absorbed fast.
A cold potato has a lower GI than a hot one which has a Gi of around 75. You can combine them with another vegetable, vinegar, oil, and some herbs, and get a delicious potato salad.
Consuming mostly foods with a low glycemic index and counting your carb intake can be an effective way to control your blood glucose and weight.