Low GI Diet

The Low GI Diet (GI stands for glycemic index) is a diet aimed at reducing weight by reducing sugar consumption. The Low GI Diet was originally conceived for diabetics, but has also been recommended to dieters as well.

Principle of the Low GI diet

The Low GI Diet follows the principle that some carbohydrates can cause weight gain. Some of these carbohydrates, such as sugar, can suddenly cause spikes in your blood stream, while other carbohydrates take longer to release.

The Low GI Diet advocates eating slow-release carbohydrates while avoiding quick-release carbohydrates.

Slow-release carbohydrates are absorbed more slowly by the body, and hence the food is likely to be burned as energy. Also, slow-release carbohydrates are more filling and tend to leave you with less urges to eat.

Quick-release carbohydrates, on the other hand, are absorbed quickly and can leave you feeling hungry sooner. This can induce you to over-eat, and hence you begin to gain weight.

What are you allowed to eat on the Low GI diet?

  • Fruit;
  • Vegetables;
  • Wholegrain cereals and grains – such as brown rice, basmati rice;
  • Lean meat – such as lean red meat, poultry and fish;
  • Fat-reduced dairy foods;
  • Some legumes – such as sweet potatoes and beans.

What is forbidden on the Low GI diet?

  • Refined white flour – such as white bread;
  • Refined sugars – such as white sugar, sweets and cakes;

The following are not restricted, but the Low GI Diet recommends that their consumption should be limited:

  • Salt;
  • Alcohol – two drinks a day for men, one drink for women;
  • Some legumes – such as potatoes.

Pros and Cons of the Low GI diet

The Low GI Diet is especially helpful for people with diabetes, or people who are close to developing diabetes. The diet is balanced and only restricts unhealthy food.

While the Low GI Diet has been scientifically proven as effective for diabetics, it is still unclear that the Low GI Diet can be beneficial for weight loss. Some studies have supported the Low GI Diet claim that eating some carbohydrates more can help you lose weight, but other studies have not.

The Low GI Diet may also help with preventing heart disease, although the results are still inconclusive. There may be a small reduction in the risk of developing heart disease on the Low GI Diet, but there is not enough scientific proof as yet.

Daily and Weekly Plans for the Low GI diet

There are no daily or weekly plans. The Low GI Diet is a general dietary method, and is not primarily intended as a method to lose weight.

Expected Weight Loss on the Low GI diet

There are no reports on expected weight loss while on the Low GI Diet.

Low GI Diet Rating

Ease: 4/5 – Reasonably easy, although it may be difficult to wean yourself off sugary food initially.

Balance: 5/5 – A balanced diet which only restricts unhealthy food.

Maintenance: 4/5 – Avoiding sugary food can be difficult at times, but generally the Low GI Diet is easy to maintain.

Overall: 5/5

More Information

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