The glycemic index (ig) is a value assigned to foods based on their effects on postprandial blood glucose levels, prescription in other words ig appreciates the extent to which carbohydrate-containing foods raise blood glucose.
Foods that are used to compare glucose and white bread, as these quickly and at high levels in blood glucose rise. Foods rich in carbohydrates, that are rapidly digested and release glucose rapidly into the bloodstream have a high ig, instead which little by little digested releasing glucose into the bloodstream slowly have a low ig.
There are several factors that influence the ig, some of them are;
- Fiber: As a rule ( but not always ) the fiber tends to slow digestion, is why it is recommended to consume fiber at every meal, breakfast and snack can be incorporated through whole grains at lunch and dinner and always accompanying the protein or carbohydrate with vegetables.
- Preparation: The time in which they were cooked food also influences the ig, eg al dente noodles have a lower than the more ig cooked noodles, like the baked potato shell compared to the mashed potatoes in which the ig is much higher.
- Maturity and storage time: in the case of the higher the more mature fruit is your ig. It should also take into account the development, fruit juices are digested faster than if you eat the whole fruit, making their ig is higher.
Other factors to consider and no less important are; food variety, the presence or absence of other nutrients and combination with other foods, An example of the latter is the union at one meal of a food with low ig ig another high which helps to balance the effect on blood glucose level.
Note that not only the amount but the type of carbs have an effect on blood glucose level, whereby the portion control is still a major element to consider.
Know and use the ig and factors in the influence is a good resource to improve control of blood glucose, while emphasizing that there is no single food plan, work in all diabetics alike, ideally this plan suits the habits and lifestyle of the person; considering that the mainstays of treatment of this disease are physical exercise, a balanced diet, and adequate medication indicated.
Lic. María Soledad Del Boca
Area of Nutrition – La Posada del Qenti