How to Choose Low GI Foods: What Factors Influence the GI of a Food?
- Simple sugars, such as regular sugar, syrup,
and honey, are high on the Glycemic Index. Foods that contain
more sugars are higher on the GI.
- Starchy foods, such as white baking potatoes
and white bread, are absorbed more quickly by the body, so they
are higher on the GI.
- Processing foods raises the GI. Any time rice
is stripped of its brown coating, or oats are cut thinner for quicker
cooking, the GI is increased. Your best bet is to eat the "whole
food"—as close as possible to how it came off the plant.
- Cooking can also raise the GI, because the food
itself is broken down during heating, making it more readily digestible.
Pasta, which is low on the index, can be made into a high GI food
if you overcook it and turn it to mush.
- Fiber in foods helps lower the GI. When you
read labels, choose foods that have at least three grams of fiber
per serving (more is better).
- Protein can also help lower the GI, so add beans
to your meal.