The glycemic index was designed for diabetics in the early 1980’s as a ranking system for carbohydrates based on their immediate impact on the blood glucose levels.
It measures how quickly or slowly a food is digested, absorbed and ultimately used for energy on a scale of 0 to 100.
A score of 55 or lower is considered low GI while 75 to 100 high.
Foods low on the index have the smallest effect on blood sugar and helps you feel fuller for longer because they take longer to digest and the sugar they contain is released slowly into the bloodstream helping you keep your blood sugars more stable.
High GI foods are typically low in fiber and you’ll likely be hungry again soon after eating them because your body breaks them down quickly to be used for energy or stored for later use as fat.
Some high fiber foods happen to have a high glycemic index too, like the special K breakfast cereal.
Although they have a high fiber content they also happen to be in the high glycemic index range.
The reason for this is the processing and that’s why we cannot only rely on the fiber content of food to determine whether it is a good choice for us because breakfast cereals in general tend to be highly processed.
So should you entirely avoid foods that have a high glycemic index? No, because life would be boring otherwise.
You do not have to avoid all foods that are high glycemic index but I’ll advice not to take them in isolation.
The best way is to have it as part of a meal. Count it as part of the carbohydrates in your meal, choose some lower GI foods at that meal to compensate so this way the proteins and fats at the meal will work together to lower the rise of blood glucose level after having eaten the high GI food.
Of course eating it everyday weather you have diabetes or not is not necessarily considered part of a healthy diet.
All foods can fit in your diet, it’s ultimately the portion size and the frequency that you’re going to be having it that matters.
Even low GI foods can spike your blood glucose levels if you consume them in large portions.
Conditions like insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes are the long term consequences of eating foods that spike up your blood glucose levels.
For every diagnosed type 2 diabetic there are about two to three undiagnosed PRE diabetics waiting in the wings to become diabetics so even if you’ve not been diagnosed it’ll only be sensible to reduce the chances by making healthier choices.
A quick google search can help you identify which foods are high or low on the glycemic index scale.
Think of food as intelligence/information that influences your physiology long term.