Glycemic index determines the foods’ increasing rate of blood glucose (sugar) level after ingestion. Glucose glycemic (GI) index is accepted as “100” , because it increases the blood sugar level fastest in all nutrients. Other foods’ sugar increasing affect is determined by comparing with glucose.
Factors that affect glycemic index
- Food processing- cooking method is one of the main factors that affects glycemic index. Cooking a food or applying some special methods like marinating make digestion and absorption easier so increases the glycemic index.
- Cereals and legumes have a hard coating on their surface; this coating slows down the digestion so these foods’ GI is low.
- Water-soluble fiber containing foods like apple, oat have a low glycemic index.
- Natural sugar containing foods have a low glycemic index but glucose syrup containing foods have very high GI.
- Foods can be listed according to their glycemic index. Understanding the foods’ GI value is important for healthy eating for a healthy life. You can know which foods have high GI and you can avoid eating them. High glycemic index foods cause so many diseases like heart disease, cancer, etc.
Foods can be listed according to their glycemic index as high-medium-low
Corn syrup (HFCS; high fructose corn syrup) is on the top of the list with its 115 GI. HFCS
is used as a sweetener in so many commercially prepared food. It increases blood sugar level in a very short time so we must avoid these kind of foods as possible to protect our health.
Fried potatoes is a 95 GI fast food and people eat so much potatoes with another high glycemic index food; hamburger. This kind of “fast food” eating habit is not recommended because of same reason.
Pop corn (85 GI) is an another high glycemic index food. These kind of fast food is preferred much by teens and children and cause obesity from very young ages. Parents should teach their children about these harmful foods and guide them to develop healthy eating habits.
Here a list of some high glycemic index foods to avoid eating so much
White rice 95
Corn flakes 85
Mashed potatoes 80
Cola fanta pepsi etc. 65-75
HFCS containing drinks 85-95
Rice cakes 81
The list can be extended, but nutritional value of the foods and the size of the portion are important as GI.