The Glycemic Index

26 Nov

I’m sure you’ve heard of The Glycemic Index: (GI)?

… is the GI really the best guideline or criteria for choosing carbs? The answer might surprise you… The glycemic index (GI) ranks foods on a scale from 1 to 100 based on how much the blood sugar increases after each food is consumed. In particular, the index is concerned with carbohydrates because fats and proteins have little effect on blood sugar levels. The higher the number, the greater the increase in blood sugar. The GI has recently attracted a lot of attention in the bodybuilding, fitness, and weight-loss world. Many popular weight-loss diets base the is entire program on the index as their primary criteria for choosing carbohydrates.

According to advocates of the GI system, foods that are high on the scale such as rice cakes, carrots, potatoes, or grape juice are “unfavorable” and should be avoided because they are absorbed so rapidly and are there foremore likely to convert to fat. Instead, you are urged to consume carbohydrates that are low on the GI such as black-eyed peas, oatmeal,peanuts, apples, and beans (all good foods, by the way).

Foods with a high GI increase insulin output more than those with a lower GI. Because high levels of insulin are associated with increased fat storage and suppressed fat burning, it is hypothesized that eating high GI foods can make you fatter than eating low GI foods. Low GI foods are thought to reduce fat storage because they cause slower release of sugar into the bloodstream and therefore less insulin production. While the GI should be given consideration in your carbohydrate choices, it’s not a good idea to make it your only criteria for choosing carbs. The mistake in strictly adhering to the GI to dictate all your carb choices isthat the index is based on carbohydrates being eaten by themselves in a fasting state … and as I’m sure you know by now, that’s a problem in ofitself. An effective fat-burning and/or muscle-preserving/building diet is always based on combining carbs and protein together – this is very important. When carbs are eaten in mixed meals that contain protein and small amounts of fat, the glycemic index loses its significance, because the protein and fat slow the absorption of the carbohydrates. For example, mashed potatoes have a GI that is near that of pure glucose, but if you combine the potatoes with a chicken breast and vegetables, the GIof the entire meal is much lower than the potato by itself. Rice cakes alsohave a high GI. But if you spread a little peanut butter on them, the fat slows the absorption of the carbs, thereby lowering the GI of the combination. A fat-burning and/or muscle-preserving/building diet is also based on eating small frequent meals that are spaced out 2.5 – 3 hours apart. This also lowers the significance of the GI because on such an eating schedule, you are never eating at a truly fasted state, except for breakfast (i.e after 8 hours of sleep). So, as you can see, if you’re including a good protein source at each meal, and you’re eating small meals frequently throughout the day (4 to 5 meals,every 2.5 – 3 hours), which is what I suggest in FusemeAll Diet .

hope me on the Glycemic Index (GI) was helpful. In summary, although it does have some merit, it’s of much less concern if you’re combining protein and/or healthy fats with your carbs and eating regularly throughout the day.

So what’s the best criteria for choosing your carbs? It’s whether or not they are natural vs. processed (man-made). To avoid natural foods like potatoes simply because they are high on the GI is unwarranted. Potatoes,for example, are an outstanding source of starchy complex carbs and contain protein as well. Cooked exactly as it is found in nature, an 8-oz. potato has only 170calories and almost no fat; it is loaded with essential nutrients and it is satisfying to eat. Compare that to 8-oz. of processed carbs, such as white pasta, which has 840 calories… Which do you think is the better choice when you’re counting calories and you want to lose body fat? If you said the potato, you’re right! If a food is all natural, if it is starchy rather than sugary, and if you are eating it as a part of a mixed meal (with a complete protein and a little unsaturated fat) every 2 – 3 hours, then you shouldn’t worry ifthe food is high on the glycemic index. The foundation of the FusemeAll Diet is based upon choosing foods that are all natural and unrefined. And the “acid-test” for whether a carb is natural and unrefined is to ask, “Did this food come out of the ground this way?” If the answer is yes, then it’s a natural, unrefined food. Here are some good natural carbs… Fruits,  Vegetables, Oatmeal (dry rolled oats and/or steel cut oats), Sweet Potato, Brown rice (basmati and long-grain rice are also fine), Beans (black, kidney, lima, etc.), Lentils,  Couscous,  Squash, Pea.

Broadly speaking, processed carbohydrates include all white sugar and white flour products, such as bread and pasta. In the processing of a whole grain into white flour, the carbohydrates are converted from a complex carb to of a more simple carb. The milling of the grains in essence causes them to lose their complexity while at the same time increasing their caloric density. In fact, one cup of regular flour contains 400 calories. One cup of high-gluten flour, which is used to make bagels, contains more than 500calories! White flour is a simple carbohydrate that is processed in the body much like sugar. Most white-flour products are also lower in nutritional value.

If you want the best results, you would be wise to limit processed carbs including white sugar and nearly all products made from white flour including baked goods, bread, crackers, pretzels, pasta, bagels, and so on.

Switch mostly to natural, unprocessed carbs like vegetables, oatmeal, yams, brown rice, potatoes, beans, lentils, etc. You could probably consume small amounts of sugar and refined carbs and still lose weight as long as you continued to burn more calories than you took in each day. But the high calorie density isn’t the only reason to avoid processed carbs… Refined carbohydrates provide little or no nutritional value. You shouldn’t just be concerned with the number of calories you eat each day; you should also be concerned with the quality and nutritional value of those calories. Your goal, and the foundation of the FusemeAll Diet, is to get the most nutritional value out of every calorie you consume

I hope this was helpful, and I hope I have the opportunity to help you lose fat fast, and permanently.

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