Glycemic index is a measure of the glycemic power of food in the blood. One of the main aspects that facilitate weight loss is favoring foods that do not raise blood sugar. Peaks of blood glucose promote the storage of fat. High glycemic index foods, therefore, stimulate appetite leading to consumption of food that the body does not need.
In addition to dietary recommendations, the authors of the GI diet also offer a global approach (30 minutes per day of physical activity, stress management, adequate hydration, and listening to hunger signals/satiety).
Basic principles of the new GI scheme
- The more soluble fiber a food has, the lower its GI.
- Foods rich in amylopectin (rapidly digested starch) have a high GI.
- Gelatinization of starch (when cooked in the presence of water) increases the GI of a food.
- The more food is processed and the more severe the treatments are (cooking, grinding, mashed), the higher the GI.
Example: Whole milk has a glycemic index of 25. This means that it raises blood sugar level in the blood by 1/4 of what the glucose would generate.
The notion of glycemic index starts from the principle (discovered in the mid-1970s) that each carbohydrate results in a different elevation of blood sugar.
Interest in people who want to lose weight is crucial because a sharp rise in blood sugar causes the secretion of a hormone that takes care of the delivery of glucose to the cells of the various organs of the body.
This hormone is called insulin. Everyone has heard of it. But is everyone aware that putting yourself in a situation where you force the body to create insulin spikes prevents the body from losing weight?
Moreover, it is following glucose peaks in the blood which cause the insulin spikes that one feels weak and will tend to snack to “awaken” and / or fill the hunger that reappears.
It is therefore vital to control the levels of glucose in the blood to avoid sticking more fat. To lose weight, it’s advisable to consume foods with low glycemic index.