Do you ever find yourself wondering if what you’re eating is good for you? Here are 5 rules that you can use to quickly assess the glycemic index of a certain food. These are not absolutes, but can serve you well if you don’t have access to a chart/table (easily found online):
- Whole Foods: the more natural, less processed the food, the lower the score
- Fiber Content: fiber helps slow down the absorption of carbohydrates, but beware how processed the fiber is, I’ll talk about it in length another day
- Starch Content: there are two types, amylose and amylopectin. Amylose is digested more slowly (basmati rice, black beans, lentils), thus makes for a lower score. Amylopectin on the other hand is absorbed really fast, jasmine rice for example.
- Sugar Content: quantity and type of sugar influence the rate of absorption. Most fruits generally score low, but tropical fruits like banana and mango score medium-high.
- Preparation of Food: cooking of foods usually increases their glycemic index, so raw food will generally score lower.
Next week: Glycemic Load.