Glycemic INDEX










High Glycemic Index Foods
(GI >70)
Glucose = 100

Rice Bubbles, Corn flakes, most sugary cereals, Wheat Bix, Baked Potato, Rice (other than Basmati), Watermelon, Corn chips, Jelly beans and Lollies.

Medium Glycemic Index Foods
(GI 50-70)

Muesli, Puffed Wheat, White and Mixed Grain Breads, Potato, Sweet-corn, Pineapple, Mango, Bananas, Rockmelon, Raisins, Biscuits (most), Shredded Wheatmeal

Low Glycemic Index Foods
(GI <50)

Porridge Oats, Oat Bran, Barley Bran, All Bran, Mini Wheats, Sultana Bran, Rye Bread (most), Pumpernickel Bread, Wholemeal Bread (most), Pasta, Baked beans, Butter Beans, Soy beans, Chick Peas, Lentils, Sweet Potato, Apples, Oranges, Grapefruit, Cherries, Peaches, Pears, (low sugar) Ice-cream, Basmati rice

What happens if I eat too much "GOOD" Carbohydrate?

When carbohydrate intake exceeds energy expenditure (even if it is all LOW GI), the excess glucose will be converted into FAT. A person eating more carbohydrate than their body uses will become FAT.

12. beer and newspapers.gif (9989 bytes)

Glycemic Index: What does it mean to you?

The Glycemic Index (GI) is the rate at which a food is broken down in the body to produce GLUCOSE. It applies to foods known as CARBOHYDRATES that we might refer to a STARCHY FOOD. Carbohydrates include BREADS and all cakes, cereals, biscuits, chips and the like. It also includes all fruit, beans and some starchy vegetables, especially potatoes.

High Glycemic index foods release glucose rapidly in the blood stream and should usually be avoided. Most fast foods are high GI. Low GI foods release glucose slowly and are encouraged. The remainder not surprisingly are medium GI.

Excess glucose is converted to FAT so even though GI relates to carbohydrates, it also has a great deal to do with CHOLESTEROL and all those other worrisome words.

What happens to carbohydrate after I eat it?

All carbohydrates are broken down to glucose. The brain and liver can use the glucose immediately for energy. Other cells require the Pancreas to produce Insulin to assist them to take in the glucose. The glucose may then be used as a source of energy for that cell.

Insulin has many other important roles. A major role is to stimulate the liver and muscle to convert glucose to glycogen for storage. Whenever blood glucose becomes low, the glycogen can be converted back to glucose for energy. Cells need glucose for energy. Glucose can be produced from fat but it is a much more complex process.

What happens if I eat high GI Food?

High Glycemic Index foods release glucose rapidly and this produces high blood levels of glucose. The body reacts by producing INSULIN from the pancreas. If this is done frequently then the cells become overloaded in their attempt to respond to insulin and take in the glucose. Like most situations of "drug" dependence, the cells gradually build up a condition known as INSULIN RESISTANCE. They require higher and higher levels of insulin in order to move the glucose into the cells.

Limited GLYCOGEN Storage Capacity

Our bodies can only store 15% of total body weight as glycogen and only 5% of Liver weight as glycogen. The remainder of the glucose is converted into fat. Five per cent of liver weight is 50 grams, about the weight of half an apple.


People who eat high enough quantities of low and medium GI food can easily find that they are in the "HELP TRIANGLE" situation shown opposite. They can move out of this situation by merely reducing their overall intake of carbohydrate and my excluding any other than low GI carbohydrate.

People who don't change, will develop ONE OR MORE of the symptoms shown as the "BLACK HOLE" of illness.

Frequent intake of high GI foods is at least partly responsible for conditions as diverse as OBESITY and ROAD RAGE!

The Pancreas produces INSULIN and GLUCAGON

The Pancreas is able to produce both INSULIN and GLUCAGON. When blood sugar is high it produces Insulin and when blood sugar is low it produces glucagon. Insulin converts glucose to glycogen and glucagon converts glycogen to glucose.

Intake should balance Expenditure

Like any MACHINE, intake needs to balance output. So with the APPROPRIATE INTAKE of low GI carbohydrate for ENERGY EXPENDED the body should be in perfect balance.

Insulintriangle.jpg (45550 bytes)

Your individual response is influenced by your genes

  • Your Pancreas fails to produce sufficient Insulin. You become a Diabetic

  • Insulin Resistance prevents Magnesium from entering your cells. The cells of your blood vessels contract causing you to have HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE

  • Insulin Resistance causes cells to build up high levels of Sodium. This leads to FLUID RETENTION and CONGESTIVE HEART FAILURE

  • Insulin Resistance causes glucose to be converted into low density CHOLESTEROL (the bad type) and TRIGLYCERIDES. This is a further risk factor in CORONARY HEART DISEASE

  • High blood Glucose stimulates the endothelial cells lining the arteries to divide. This causes thickening of the arteries, ARTERIOSCLEROSIS

  • Both high Insulin and high Glucose stimulate cell division (in general) increasing your risk of CANCERS

  • High Glucose suppresses IMMUNITY and increases susceptibility to INFECTIONS

  • High Glucose depletes VITAMIN B1 (THIAMINE) which is known as the SELF-ESTEEM vitamin. This causes or increases ANXIETY.



For information on how to overcome any problems of reproduction natural

The Lifestyle Doctor, Adelaide, South Australia
Cartoons on this site are the original creations of Janita Hill