Glycemic index helps manage and prevent diabetes

Thirty per cent of the next generation will develop diabetes at some point in their lives

Thirty per cent of the next generation will develop diabetes at some point in their lives. Chances are diabetes affects of will affect someone you know.

To lower the risk of diabetes, the Canadian Diabetes Association recommends people eat a low Glycemic Index (GI) diet and engage in active living.

Dr. David Jenkins, a Canadian nutritional sciences professor, developed the Glycemic Index. It ranks carbohydrate-rich foods by how much they raise blood glucose (sugar) levels. When you eat food containing carbohydrates, glucose breaks down during digestion and gives you energy.

After you eat, blood glucose level rise. Foods that increase glucose levels quickly have a higher GI rating.  Foods that do so more slowly have a lower one. Generally, the lower the rating, the better the quality of the carbohydrate and the greater the overall nutritional benefit. Low GI foods are usually low in calories and fat, while high in fibre, nutrients and antioxidants.  Choosing low GI foods more often has many health benefits.

Prevent obesity: Low GI foods digest more slowly and stay in your stomach longer.  This makes you feel full longer, resulting in consuming fewer calories and making it easier to control weight.  In addition, low GI foods do not cause blood glucose levels to spike.

Prevent type 2 diabetes: High GI foods may increase the body’s demand for insulin and raise the workload of the pancreas.  Some researchers believe that eating a diet rich in high GI foods for many years may cause the pancreas to wear out, resulting in type 2 diabetes.  Eating low GI foods can ease the demand on the pancreas.

Manage diabetes: Eating low-GI foods helps control blood glucose and improves the body’s sensitivity to insulin.  These foods do not break down into sugar as quickly and can keep blood glucose from spiking which allows the body to keep up with insulin demands.  For those with diabetes, controlling blood glucose plays an important role in preventing the serious complications of the disease.

Prevent heart disease: High GI foods can raise cholesterol and triglyceride levels, increasing the risk of heart disease.  In contrast, consuming low GI foods keeps blood glucose and insulin levels in check. Some evidence suggests low GI foods reduce total blood cholesterol and bad LDL cholesterol, while increasing heart-friendly, good HDL cholesterol.

Including lower GI foods in your diet can be easy. Eat more whole grain pasta, legumes, vegetables and low-fat dairy products. Try using vinaigrette dressings instead of creamy dressings. They are lower in fat and the acidity of the vinegar slows digestion, lowering your meal’s GI. Choose breads that contain a high proportion of whole or cracked grains, stone-ground whole wheat flour, oats, bran and seeds. Aim to include at least one low GI food in each meal.

– The author, Laura Kalina, is a community nutritionist with Interior Health

 

 

Just Posted

The Valley Votes: Your election results

The results are in from the 2018 municipal election.

Salmon Arm Silverbacks lock down 5-3 victory over Alberni Valley Bulldogs

Nick Unruh scores three goals to land a hat-trick on home ice

Salmon River and Deep Creek roads in ministry’s 2019 paving plan

Columbia Shuswap Regional District director bemoans lack of money for rural roads

New bus service hopes to announce scheduled stops by Oct. 26

Shuswap is expected to be included in Rider Express Transportation’s plans

Black trucks figure prominently in Shuswap thefts

Chase RCMP investigating stolen vehicles from several communities

Tommy Chong says cannabis legalization makes him proud to be a Canadian

Legendary marijuana advocate and comedian celebrates cultural milestone at Kelowna event

Prank pizzas delivered to B.C. mayor on election night

The fake orders happened throughout Victoria mayor’s re-election campaign

MLA to become Nanaimo’s next mayor, could weaken NDP’s grasp on power

Leonard Krog’s win will trigger a byelection when he gives up his provincial seat

Horvat nets OT winner as Canucks beat Bruins 2-1

Young Vancouver star had spirited scrap earlier in contest

Team Canada gold medal winners for first time in world curling championship

Team Canada earned gold in Kelowna at the 2018 Winn Rentals World Mixed Curling Championship

B.C. passenger caught smoking weed in a car issued $230 fine

Saanich police did a field sobriety test on the driver and deemed it safe for him to drive

Payette invites critics to ‘come and spend a few days’ with her

Governor General Julie Payette made her first official to B.C. back in March

More pot stores expected in B.C. in coming ‘weeks and months’: attorney general

Attorney General David Eby and Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth visited the new BC Cannabis Store in the province’s Interior

Telus launches charitable foundation to help vulnerable youth

The Telus Friendly Future Foundation complements other social initiatives by the company, including Mobility for Good

Most Read