The Most Effective Way to Use Foods With a Low Glycemic Index

Understanding the Glycemic Index

Knowing what foods are low on the glycemic index can be valuable to many people for many reasons. The glycemic index is used to categorize foods containing carbohydrates and their affect on blood glucose levels in the body. A diet that includes foods with a low glycemic index can minimize the complications of diseases such as diabetes and reduce the risk of heart disease.

Foods with a low glycemic index help to maintain more stable blood glucose levels and allow the body to function properly with balanced energy. Consuming low GI-rated foods can also help you to manage your weight more easily.

Under 55

In order for a carbohydrate to be considered low on the glycemic index, it must have a rating of 55 and under. Here is a list of foods with low glycemic index values:

Fruits:

Cherries 22, Grapefruit 48, Prunes 29, Apricots (dried) 30, Apple 38, Peach (canned in juice) 38, Pear (fresh) 38, Plum 39, Strawberries 40, Navel Orange 42, Peach (fresh) 42, Pear, canned 43, Grapes 46, Mango 51, Banana 52, Pineapple 46, Fruit Cocktail 55, Tomato 40

Cereals:

All Bran with Fiber 38, Muesli 43, Bran Buds 47, Oat Bran 55, Barley (pearled and boiled) 35

Vegetables:

Broccoli 10, Cabbage 10, Lettuce 10, Mushrooms 10, Onions 10, Red Peppers 10, Carrots 49, Green peas 48

Pasta:

Fettuccine (egg) 32, Spaghetti (whole wheat) 37, Spaghetti (white) 38, Star Pastina 38, Spiral Pasta 43, Capellini 45, Linguine 46 Macaroni 47

Dairy:

Yogurt (artificially sweetened) 14, Whole milk 31, Skim milk 32, Yogurt (sweetened) 33, Ice cream (premium) 38, Ice cream (low fat) 43, Peanuts 15, Walnuts 15, Cashews 22

Breads:

Pumpernickel 41, Sourdough 53, Stone Ground whole wheat 53, Yams 37, Sweet potatoes 44

Juices:

Tomato 38, Orange 53

Beans:

Chickpeas (dried) 28, Kidney Beans (dried) 28, Lentils 29, Lima Beans (frozen) 32 Yellow Split Peas 32, Chickpeas (canned) 42, Black eyed Peas (canned) 42, Baked Beans 48, Kidney Beans (canned) 52

Ways to Use Foods With Low Glycemic Index Values

There are several choices available to the individual who is following a low glycemic diet. During cold winter months, for example, soups make an easy meal. Opt for broth based beef stew, minestrone, split pea, or a simple vegetable soup to warm up.

Snacking on low glycemic foods is imperative to keeping glucose levels steady. Pairing up 1/2 cup cottage cheese sprinkled with a few walnuts is great, or try a sliced apple with a serving of peanut butter spread on top. Both of these have healthy fats and offer protein as well.

Start the day off right with a healthy breakfast, by preparing something easy such as a bowl of cooked barley and eggs. Eggs are an excellent protein food, with no glycemic index reading, and barley is an excellent source of fiber and iron. Another way to use those foods with low glycemic index values, is to include many vegetables-especially the green ones, into a person's daily nutrition. Steam them with fish, or use them to make salads, and throw in kidney beans or dried chickpeas to make a meal. There are so many ways to keep a diet low glycemic, and using this list of foods will ensure that a person can maintain with this healthy way of eating.

Resources

Home of the Glycemic Index-www.glycemicindex.com

Revised International Table of Glycemic Index & Glycemic Load Values-2008

Glycemic Index-www.diabetesnet.com