The Glycemic Index or GI, measures how a carbohyrate-containing food raises blood glucose. Foods are ranked based on how they compare to a reference food — either glucose or white bread.
A food with a high GI raises blood glucose more than a food with a medium or low GI. Meal planning with the GI involves choosing foods that have a low or medium GI. If eating a food with a high GI, you can combine it with low GI foods to help balance the meal.
Examples of carbohydrate-containing foods with a low GI include dried beans and legumes (like kidney beans and lentils), all non-starchy vegetables, some starchy vegetables like sweet potatoes, most fruit, and many whole grain breads and cereals (like barley, whole wheat bread, rye bread, and all-bran cereal).
Meats and fats don’t have a GI because they do not contain carbohydrate.
Below are examples of foods based on their GI.
Why Is GI Important?
Over the past 15 years, low-GI diets have been associated with decreased risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, stroke, depression, chronic kidney disease, formation of gall stones, neural tube defects, formation of uterine fibroids, and cancers of the breast, colon, prostate, and pancreas. Taking advantage of these potential health benefits can be as simple as sticking with whole, natural foods that are either low or very low in their GI value.
GI or Carbohydrate Counting?
There is no one diet or meal plan that works for everyone with diabetes. The important thing is to follow a meal plan that is tailored to personal preferences and lifestyle and helps achieve goals for blood glucose, cholesterol, cholesterol and triglycerides levels, blood pressureblood pressure, and weight management. Research shows that both the amount and the type of carbohydrate in food affect blood glucose levels. Studies also show that the total amount of carbohydrate in food, in general, is a stronger predictor of blood glucose response than the GI. Based on the research, for most people with diabetes, the first tool for managing blood glucose is some type of some type of carbohydrate counting.carbohydrate countingcarbohydrate counting Because the type of carbohydrate can affect blood glucose, using the GI may be helpful in “fine-tuning” blood glucose management. In other words, combined with carbohydrate counting, it may provide an additional benefit for achieving blood glucose goals for individuals who can and want to put extra effort into monitoring their food choices.
More About GI?
The glycemic index website at the University of Sydney provides extensive information about her work as well as a searchable database for GI values.
Reference : http://www.diabetes.org/