Glycaemic index

glycaemic index

What is the Glycaemix index?

The Glycaemic index (GI) is a ranking of carbohydrates based on their immediate effect on blood glucose (blood sugar) levels. It compares foods gram for gram of carbohydrate. Carbohydrates that break down quickly during digestion have a higher GI rating. Carbohydrates that break down slowly, releasing glucose gradually into the blood stream, have a lower GI.

In summary:

  • High GI foods - break down quickly and release energy to the body quickly
    Example: bananas have a high GI and are often eating during sports as they release energy almost instantly
  • Low GI foods - break down slowly and release energy to the body slowly
    Example: muesli has a low GI and is a great start to the day as it realeases energy slowly so you feel satisfied for longer.

How does the Glycaemic index help me?

  • Low GI diets can help people lose weight
  • Low GI diets can improve the body's sensitivity to insulin
  • Low GI can improve diabetes control
  • Low GI foods keep you fuller for longer
  • High GI foods can help re-fuel energy stores after exercise.

How to switch to a low GI diet

  • Use breakfast cereals based on oats, barley and bran
  • Use "grainy" breads made with whole seeds
  • Reduce the amount of potatoes you eat
  • Enjoy all types of fruit and vegetables (except potatoes)
  • Eat plenty of salad vegetables with vinaigrette dressing.

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