- NUTRITIONAL WELLNESS
- KNOW YOUR SERVING
- BODY SMART
- MEAL PLANNING
- TIPS & TRICKS
- UNDERSTANDING FOOD LABELS
The Glycemic Index (GI) is a scale which ranks carbohydrate by there glycemic response, which is the amount and speed they raise blood sugar levels. The reference food is compared to either glucose or white bread. The lower the glycemic index, the lower the rise in blood sugar.
Why Should I Choose Foods Low in Glycemic Index?
Eating foods with a low glycemic index may help to:
- control your blood sugar and blood cholesterol levels
- control your appetite
- lower your risk for developing heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
Foods with a higher glycemic index break down faster during digestion. High glycemic foods are useful for some groups of people, including athletes, who need a fast supply of glucose to fuel their muscles during and after competition.
Most starchy foods have a high Glycemic Index. Foods with high fibre content typically have a lower GI. Choose medium and low GI foods more often.
Table 1: Glycemic Index of Some Common Foods
Low GI (55 or less)*
Medium GI (56-69)*
High GI (70 or more)*
100% stone ground whole wheat
Heavy mixed grain
Oat bran cereal
Oatmeal, Quick oats
Basmati rice, Brown rice
Sweet potato, Yams
Chickpeas, Kidney beans, Split peas, Soy beans, Baked beans
Sweet corn, Popcorn
Black bean soup
Green pea soup
Potato, baking (Russet)
*Expressed as a percentage of the value for glucose
Ref: Diabetes of Canada website, 2008