What is the glycemic index and how can it help me?

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What is the glycemic index and how can it help me?

Question:

I have had diabetes for many years and manage it by diet and exercise.  I keep hearing about the glycemic index.  What is this and how can it help me? -Jessica

Answer:

Jessica,

The glycemic index (GI) is a scale of how glucose in edible products affects the blood glucose.  It has been shown in many research studies that low glycemic index foods help to regulate blood sugar because they slow down the digestive and absorption process.  The ratings are based on a scale of 100.  Foods with a rating of 55 or lower are considered low glycemic index foods and are recommended to be eaten by people with diabetes and those at risk of developing diabetes.  Foods with a rating of 56 to 69 are considered moderate GI.   High glycemic index foods are those with a rating of 70 or greater.  For instance, when comparing whole grain rice versus white rice, whole grain rice falls into the category of moderate glycemic index whereas white rice falls into the high category.   You can find more information at www.glycemicindex.com.