Archive for the ‘Glycemic Index’ Category

High carb diet will add more pounds

Monday, November 29th, 2010

It seems almost silly at this point to mention that a high carb diet is probably not a good idea.  But yet another study, this one published in the New England Journal of Medicine from the University of Copenhagen concluded that people who ate a lower carb diet kept more weight off than a higher carb diet.

Surprise, surprise.  Refined carbs, in my opinion, can be quite addictive.  And an excess of carbs over time gets converted and stored as fat in the body.  What the body doesn’t use, it stores for a rainy day. Or more specifically, a day when food isn’t so readily available. 

But our modern society has provided us with an abundance of food and food choices.  Some of them even completely chemical and not found in nature.  And even Frankensteinish genetically modified foods (GMO).

This study showed that eating foods relatively high in protein and mixed with low GI (Gylcemic Index) foods resulted in people doing and feeling better.  High glycemic index foods cause a rapid rise in blood sugar levels and usually a consequent drop in levels to form the classic roller coaster symptoms.

So, this study also suggested that people cut back on 2 servings per day of refined carbs and replace them with nuts and beans.  Nuts are low carb, and beans are medium carb, but have fiber to help slow blood sugar absorption.

My suggestion would be to go one step further and replace refined carbs with vegetables.  Especially green leafy vegetables.  Lots of fiber, nutrient dense and ultra low carb.

Meat, fat and the glycemic index

Friday, November 12th, 2010

The glycemic index measures how carbohydrates affect blood sugar in the body.  The lower the glycemic index, the less the body reacts to the carbohydrate.  Higher glycemic index foods can cause significant blood sugar spikes, because sugar is quickly broken down by the body for use as fuel.  And with diabetics this can be actually dangerous.

So interestingly enough, meat and fats aren’t really a part of the glycemic index (because they aren’t carbs).  And because they don’t cause a measurable rapid increase in blood sugar levels like carbs do.  Meat and fat, being dense nutrient foods seem to actually help slow the absorption of high glycemic foods.

Which could ultimately mean that if you are prone to blood sugar spikes and the slew of symptoms associated with that, like fatigue, irritability, shakiness, fogginess, etc., then you might want to consider looking at what you are eating.

High glycemic foods are white bread, sugar, potatoes, rice, cereals. All the things that aren’t low carb.  Typically the more processed the food, the higher the glycemic index.

Vegetables, like cauliflower, zucchini, green beans, broccoli are all extremely low on the glycemic index.

So when you eat low glycemic foods, like meat, fat and vegetables, you don’t cause your body to quickly raise blood sugar levels and then convert any excess / unused sugar into fat where it’s stored.

I carried most of my weight in my stomach / mid section.  When I started eating just meat and vegetables, that’s the first thing that started to go.  And go quickly.  I lost 7 inches in 12 weeks.  That’s what I really like about the low carb lifestyle, the speed of the weight loss.

Here’s also what happened in my own experience when I switched to low carb – hence very low glycemic foods.  Besides losing weight unbelievably fast (my friends are literally shocked – cause I’ve been heavy for years), I had a whole host of positive symptoms, like improved mental clarity, better sleep, it literally reset my nocturnal clock, no more grogginess, my circulation has improved radically and I feel more consistent stable energy throughout the day.  No more naps, no more mood swings, no more chronic fatigue, no more food caused blood sugar spikes – it’s really been an eye opening experience.

So for me, right now, I still have alot of weight to lose.  And what I am doing is working like nothing else I have tried.   And so I am gonna keep on doing it.  And when I get down to where I want to be, then I will start adding more of the low to medium glycemic foods with an occasional higher glycemic food, but only when mixed with some protein, fat and vegetables to slow down the absorption rate.

My approach is to get the excess weight off first, because I know that is wreaking havoc on my system and then once I am where I want to be, then I’ll build on that foundation by adding better food choices in the future.

I’m already down 48 lbs in about 12 weeks.  I have at least another 40 to go, but I am definitely headed in the right direction and fast.