Understanding Glycemic Index (GI)

Last Updated on June 18, 2021

Yesterday, I spent a lot of time pouring through the book called “The Glucose Revolution”. Basically the book promotes taking food which is low in G.I or Glycemic index. Originally GI is developed as a tool for diabetics to control the blood sugar and insulin in their blood, its popularity spread through the entire world.

How GI is derived: from how taking certain food affected the blood sugar level on real humans. Then, every 15 min, the volunteer’s blood sugar are tested to determine how much of blood sugar is in the system. The average is then taken as the GI. From there, G.I are developed for single as well as combined food.

According to the authors, the key to successful permanent weight loss lies in choosing the right type of food to eat. The diet should not leave you feeling deprived or starved. You can eat more as long as it is not energy densed food (like a crossant or cheesecake). By choosing food low in GI, you tend to be satiated and do not suffer from hunger pangs due to flunctuation of your blood sugar level. Examples:

Food that you must avoid (because high in GI):
white rice, Jasmine rice, watermelon, dates, cornflakes, pretzels, sodas, bagels.

Food you can take moderately (medium in GI):
table sugar (surprisingly), noodles, pasta, raisins, Mars bar (another surprise).

Food low in GI (good to take):
Many types of beans & vegetable.

The book also recommends that by careful food combination, you can take low and high GI food in single meal -if the overall GI factor is low, then your blood sugar will not fluctuate rapidly.

My experience
The GI concept does not fully work with me. Reason being is that my body is sensitive to sugar intake. If you suffer from the following signs:

  • continuous craving for sugar and starchy food (not to be mistaken with hunger). You only specifically wants something starchy or sweet, even after a meal.
  • tendency to gain weight easily or easily regain lost weight
  • always feel very bloated, sluggish, no energy, lethargic after a processed carbo meal.
  • always feel hungry or tired in mid afternoon
  • have the following signs: headaches, irritability, mood swings, dizziness, disorientation, lack of concentration, lack of motivation.

Then we are on the same boat…. sensitive to sugar. The best is to combine both the low carb diet but take a bit of idea from the GI:

  • avoid fruits in high GI such as watermelon.
  • If you want to take food that is high in GI, then you must combine some low GI food to lower the effect on your blood sugar.

Read more on the next topic: Are you a Carbohydrate Addict?

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