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What they talk about – glycemic index foods

September 16th, 2015 | by Czech Association
What they talk about – glycemic index foods
Diet Guides

For good control of diabetes we need to know the carbohydrate content in foods. Doctors to demonstrate that any food raises blood sugar in another way – some fast and some slow. Because diabetics is a sharp rise in blood glucose harmful, it is preferable to learn to predict the glycemic index of foods at a blink.

It has been found that certain carbohydrates increase blood sugar more than others. This can be expressed using the so-called Glycemic index (GI), which determines how far the food deflects level of sugar in the blood after its consumption. GI values are determined experimentally, that the maximum value of GI = 100 is associated with glucose.

In general we can say that if two people go on a diet with the same energy value, it is likely to lose more weight one that will eat mainly foods with a lower glycemic index.


How is the value of the glycemic index determined?

This is based on the value of the glycemic index of glucose, which has a value of 100. The index indicates the ability of carbohydrate foods to raise blood sugar.

Values are determined experimentally and are far from being available for all food (a lot of information but still growing).

The more you move closer to a hundred, it is more insidious for obese and diabetics. Some foods may even exceed the value of 100.



The value of the glycemic index is influenced by:


  • carbs

The higher is the content of simple sugars, especially glucose, so the higher is GI value (sugar in tea, lemonade). The higher is the content of polysaccharides – starch, so the lower is the GI value. Ripe fruit (eg. bananas) have a higher GI than a non-ripe fruit, long-term storage autumnal fruit has a higher GI than summer.

  • the ratio between the three essential nutrients – carbohydrates, fats and proteins

Proteins or fats don‘t have the ability to influence the secretion of insulin. The glycemic index of a food will be different when you eat a food alone or when you combine it with other foods. The addition of fat and protein reduces GI. These nutrients contained in food or in the meal slow gastric emptying and thus also the subsequent absorption of the ingested sugar from this meal. It is therefore advantageous to combine in one meal carbohydrate-containing foods and food without carbohydrates or low content carbohydrates (meat, fish, cheese, eggs, dairy, vegetables).

  • fiber

Fiber slows down the use of sugars. The higher is the fiber content, so the lower is the GI. Similarly it behaves also thermally untreated starch. The more food contains starch, so the slower digested and has a lower GI. Examples are e.g. legumes. The more starch is swollen, overcooked, so the higher is the GI. Therefore pasta has relatively high GI, while certain cereals have lower GI – longer to digest and release glucose more slowly.

Starch from peeled rice and boiled or baked potatoes are quickly broken down into glucose, therefore, they have a high GI.

  • way of handling food

Processing of foods affects GI levels. The more “holds food together,” the harder it releases sugar into the blood and lower GI. The food is more “puffed”, overcooked and more cooked, thereby increasing GI.

  • acidity of foods

Acids present in a food or additive in food have reducing effect for GI by slowing down gastric emptying of foods, thereby limiting the speed of absorption of sugar. These effects have e.g. vinegar, lemon juice, salad dressings, sour fruit etc. They have the same effect as fermented milk products like e.g. yoghurt, sour milk and others.

  • serving sizes

It is preferable to eat small meals more often per day, because of course in this manner we eat smaller portions of sugar.


How should a menu look like?

Today, unfortunately, the prevailing trend is hyperglycemic nutrition. Often it is the essence of the diet of modern man finely ground grains in the form of hamburgers, baguettes and sandwiches, as well as chips, popcorn, sweet drinks. It is not enough simply to count calories, it is necessary to take into account the composition of the diet, method of preparation, heat treatment, the amount of fiber – these all influence the glycemic index also of the same foods (eg. corn has a GI of 70, popcorn 85, jacket potatoes have a GI of 65, peeled potatoes has 70, mashed potatoes 90 and potatoes baked in the oven or fries 95).

Who wants to lose weight, then he should choose foods with a GI largely to 30, a range of foods GI 30-70 is overweight prevention and in the zone above 70 is already threatening weight gain.

The basis of the diet should be adequate intake of protein from dairy products, fish and poultry, as well as good sources of carbohydrates with a low glycemic index, such as legumes, vegetables and some fruits, as well as adequate intake of fat, especially high-quality plant.



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