The Lowdown on the GI Diet

WEIGHT LOSS
Monday, September 12, 2016
THE LOWDOWN ON THE GI DIET
The Lowdown on the GI Diet

If you’ve given up on trying unsuccessful weight loss strategies, you’re tired of counting calorie after calorie, and you’re sick of diets leaving you feeling hungry and deprived, the GI diet could be for you.

 

The Glycemic Index diet is an uncomplicated long-term approach to successful weight management. The GI diet is not only designed to be a healthy way of eating, but also to reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and colon and prostate cancers.

 

So what’s the idea?

The GI diet measures the speed at which foods are broken down by the body to form glucose, the body’s source of energy. It is based on the theory that low GI foods break down slowly providing you with a steady supply of energy so you feel satisfied longer and you're less likely to snack. Whereas foods with a high GI break down quickly and cause a rapid and short-lived rise in blood sugar leaving you low in energy and feeling hungry within a short time, thus snacking more frequently.

 

Zip up those jeans!

The GI diet has reasonable expectations and is easy to sustain. The GI diet anticipates that - on average - you will lose about ½ kg per week. You will notice the greatest weight loss in the first two to three weeks as the body adjusts to its new regimen. In many cases, the first sign of weight loss is not necessarily on the scale, but a feeling that you can do up your jeans more easily or that your dress doesn't fit quite so tightly.

 

Ready, set, go!

The GI diet lists all foods in three traffic light color categories: red light foods which you should steer clear of; yellow light foods that you can enjoy occasionally; and green light foods which you can eat as much as you like and should try to include in each meal or snack. So the idea is, if you can follow a traffic light, you can follow this diet. Foods have a GI value on an index up to 100.

 

Foods only appear on the GI index if they contain carbohydrates. So you won't find foods like fresh meat, chicken, fish, eggs, and cheese on GI lists. However, you may find some processed foods like sausages or chicken nuggets on the list because they contain flour!

 

One of the main limitations to a GI diet is that it is difficult to identify the GI value of a food/meal. Also, while some foods have a low GI value, they may also be packed with fat and/or salt and contain few nutrients such as peanuts and chocolate.

 

So if getting healthy is on your ever-increasing list of things to do, give the GI diet a go! Think of it as a new way of eating and a step towards a healthier lifestyle, rather than a diet per se. 

 

 

Low GI foods (55 or less) 


Roasted & salted peanuts

14

Whole milk

27

Noodles

40

All Bran

42

Macaroni

45

Milk chocolate

49

Orange juice

46

Boiled carrot

49

Banana

55

 

Medium GI Foods (56-69)


Boiled potatoes

56

Sultanas

56

Basmati rice

58

Honey

58

Digestive biscuits

59

Coca cola

63

Croissant

67

Mars bar

68

Wholemeal bread

69

 

High GI foods (70 plus)


Mashed potatoes

70

White bread

70

Watermelon

72

Bran flakes

74

French fries

75

Rice cakes

82

Cornflakes

84

Baguette

95

White rice, steamed

98

 

 

  • With the GI diet there is no need to go hungry or feel deprived because it is a balanced combination of proteins, carbohydrates and good fats.  It is extremely simple to follow; there is no need to weigh, measure or count grams or calories and it is actually beneficial to health.

 

  • How you cook a food, the degree of processing and the ripeness and variety of a fruit, for example, affect its GI value.

 

  • The glycemic index diet was originally created to help people with diabetes manage their blood sugar. 
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