GI stands for Glycaemic Index, a scale of one to a hundred that describes the rate at which our body digests carbohydrates and the impact this has on our blood sugar levels.
Foods with a high GI, such as bagels (72), white rice (87) and parsnips (97), encourage the body to release insulin at a fast rate, resulting in short bursts of energy that are replaced with long energy lulls and possibly food cravings, plus the sugar is converted rapidly into glucose and any left unused is then stored as fat. Low GI foods, on the other hand, release sugar into the bloodstream slowly and steadily to give you a constant supply of energy that means ultimately you store less fat.
Although high GI foods aren’t completely off limits, the concept of the GI is to stick to foods with a low GI such as all bran cereal (30), lean white meat (0), tomatoes (15), sweet potatoes (48) and noodles (47). By doing this your body will be satisfied, you’ll feel less hungry and you shouldn’t experience any cravings.
The GI scale…
55 or less – low GI
56-69 – medium GI
70 plus – high GI
A typical day on the GI diet could include….
Breakfast: Natural no sugar muesli (40) with semi skimmed milk (31) and a glass of apple juice (41).
Lunch: Tomato soup (38) with a soya and linseed bread roll (36), and low fat yoghurt (14).
Snacks: Fresh Cherries (22) or dried apricots (31).
Dinner: Roast chicken (0), a sweet potato (48) with a small knob of butter and lots of vegetables including broccoli (10), cauliflower (15), asparagus (15) and cabbage (10). Two scoops of low fat dairy ice cream with peaches (42).
The GI diet is considered a safer and healthier method of weight loss than many fad diets. No food is completely off the menu, plus it claims to show visible results within seven days.
Many complex carbohydrates are low GI so you shouldn’t get hunger pangs or cravings.
Initially you’ll need to carry a GI food index with you. Plus, lots of fruit and vegetables – such as watermelon (80), carrots (92), dates (103), pumpkin (75) and broad beans (79) - are high GI and shouldn’t be eaten.
Kylie Minogue, Naomi Campbell, Kim Cattral, Natalie Imbruglia