Friday, January 20, 2012

The Glycemic Index Diet - Foods To Avoid by Andrew Mason

One of these days somebody is going to invent the perfect diet, a plan that will enable every one of us who is plagued by this issue to overcome all our problems and live happily ever after. A pipe dream? Unfortunately, yes, as there is no such thing as a perfect diet, a solution that will work for each and every one of us. Remember that the diet is an individual undertaking and the ideal, healthy plan has to be based on a variety of different factors. Just think of our makeup, our genetic input, the lifestyle that we choose to lead, what we like and dislike and our general aversion to a plan and you can see how difficult it could be.

Many of us choose to go on a diet for a number of reasons. Often these are health related, but sometimes we come across a dietary plan that seems to address a number of very important health issues in one go. Such a diet bears extra attention and a plan based on the glycemic index is just such an option.

The glycemic index is a ranking factor, based upon the effect of a carbohydrate when we consume it. The process of digestion releases a certain amount of blood glucose into our system and the index measures a portion containing 50 g of carbohydrate to get relative values. All readings are compared against pure glucose, which is allocated a factor of 100 and each food is therefore given a number between zero and the top of the scale. Foods that are higher on the index will elevate your blood sugar levels much more than those at the bottom. This is known as the glycemic response and is also affected by the quantity of the food in the portion, whether it is processed or not and how it is prepared.

The glycemic index diet is particularly attractive, as it regulates the blood sugar levels of those who have been affected by diabetes. It's easy to understand why people are drawn to this style of dieting, as it has a clear ability to regulate weight control. If we opt to consume foods from the lower part of the index, blood glucose levels will be better regulated, the sugar levels will be more balanced over a longer period of time and this will help to avoid peaks and troughs, hunger pangs, cravings and other issues.

We find that diets based on the glycemic index contain many different fruits and vegetables, often presented in their natural state for their health benefits and nutrient loads. Always contain the portion size, however, and develop your plan based on the glycemic load, rather than simply the index. After all, a glycemic load takes into account the portion size of each serving as well.

It's important to avoid foods such as baked potatoes, white rice, heavy starches and others that will elevate the sugar levels too quickly, lead to the formation of fats, create difficulties with weight regulation and, of course, raise the possibility of diabetes. Balance a diet based on the low glycemic count by adding lean protein, the right amount of fat and of course remember to be active and to exercise. The bottom line is that it is the quality and not necessarily the quantity of the carbohydrate that we should focus on.