The new Glycemic Index diet was written by a dietician of French origin as well as an engineer, specialist in food. The first book published in 2007, The GI slimming diet, was very successful. According to the authors, this is the only method that would be effective for long-term weight loss and has been the subject of numerous scientific studies. Also according to the authors, for many years, all health professionals have been wrong in suggesting diets low in lipids (fat) to lose weight. This new book is therefore an update of the previous one because new scientific studies have confirmed the beneficial effects of this diet on the figure and health in general. The dietitian author of this book has been using this method for more than two years with her clients and has seen impressive results.
What is Glycemic Index?
The index or glycemic index of a food is the impact that this one produces on the glycemia – the level of sugar in the blood. It ranges from 1 to 100, 100 being attributed to glucose, a pure sugar. The higher a food has a glycemic index, the more it changes blood sugar.
The sugars in a food with a low glycemic index are called complex carbohydrates, as opposed to simple carbohydrates. The former consists of a long chain of sugars, which the enzymes must “cut” during digestion. The longer a chain, the longer it takes to cut it, and the longer it delays the onset of hunger.
The main goals or principles
- Decreased risk of diabetes, heart attack, cancer, eye pathologies, and age-related hearing loss.
- Decreased inflammation
- Increase in service life
What is the principle of the low glycemic index diet?
The new GI diet is based on the great principle of the glycemic index of foods. What would make you lose weight would be to focus on foods that do not raise the blood sugar level (blood sugar) suddenly because the blood sugar spikes promote the storage of fat. Foods with a high glycemic index (sugary foods, refined grains, potatoes) are thought to stimulate appetite and encourage eating large amounts of foods that the body does not need. In addition to dietary recommendations, the authors of the IG diet also offer a comprehensive approach (30 minutes per day of physical activity, stress management, adequate hydration, listening for hunger and satiety signals, reading labels).
Basic principles of the new GI diet
- The richer food is insoluble fiber, the lower its GI (oatmeal, barley, legumes, apple, prune).
- Foods rich in amylopectin (quickly digested starch) have a high GI (potatoes, breakfast cereals)
- The gelatinization of starch (when cooked in the presence of water) increases the GI of a food (well-cooked pasta versus al dente, rice, bread)
- The more a food is processed and the more severe the treatments (cooking, crushing, mashing), the higher the GI.
The Ten Commandments of the New GI Diet
- At least 3 fruits and 3 vegetables per day
- Low or moderate GI bread and cereals (E‚55): whole grain multi-grain bread, sourdough bread, brown rice, basmati rice, oatmeal
- Legumes twice a week
- Nuts and oleaginous fruits (hazelnuts, almonds …) every day
- Two fish three times a week
- Meat, eggs two to four times a week
- Dairy products in moderation
- Olive and rapeseed (or canola) oil for seasoning and cooking (ideally first cold pressing)
- Listening for signals of hunger and fullness
Pleasure and good humor
- The new GI diet has three phases. The duration of these phases is variable and depends on the desired weight loss.
- The first phase is the offensive phase. You must choose foods from the green zone with a GI of less than 20.
- Then the second phase is that of destocking. You must choose foods from the green zone and add those from the yellow zone with a GI lower than 55. Each meal must contain a carbohydrate food, a protein food, a fruit, and a drink without added sugar.
- Finally, the third phase is that of stabilization. Choose foods with a GI of less than 70. Every day, eat vegetables, legumes, fresh and dried fruits, pasta, basmati rice, wholemeal sourdough bread, olive oil, butter, nuts, and seeds. Each week eat fish, seafood, eggs, red meat, and poultry. Occasionally, consume white bread, white rice, potatoes, pastries, industrial cakes, cold meats, and sodas or soft drinks.
Foods with a GI between 70 and 100 are reserved for special occasions only (mashed potatoes, fries, white flour, sweet breakfast cereals, cakes, pies, rice drink …).
Advantages and disadvantages of low glycemic index diet
Satiety and well-being
Sufficient protein intake at each meal helps achieve a feeling of fullness. As in most diets, the first phase is often very drastic and limits certain food groups. In this case grain products and dairy products. Since grain products provide a significant amount of fiber, avoiding them for a while can limit their potential satiating effect.
High to Low Glycemic Index Fruits:
High Glycemic Fruits (GLYCEMIC INDEX >70)
- Watermelon (GI: 72)
- Honey (GI: 73)
- Doughnuts (GI: 75)
- French fries (GI: 76)
- White Rice (GI: 89)
- Cereals (GI: 76)
- Millet (GI: 71)
- White bread (GI: 71)
- Cheerios (GI: 74)
- Pumpkin (GI: 75)
- Instant oatmeal (GI: 83)
- Rice pasta (GI: 78)
- Parsnips (GI: 97)
- Corn syrup (GI: 73)
- Table sugar (GI: 75)
- Soda (GI: 74)
- Puffed rice (GI: 78)
Moderate Glycemic Fruits (GLYCEMIC INDEX 55-70)
- Kiwi (GI: 58)
- Pineapple(GI: 66)
- Raisins (GI: 64)
- Ripe Bananas (GI: 56)
- Papaya (GI: 60)
Low Glycemic Fruits (GLYCEMIC INDEX <55)
- Apples (GI: 39)
- Nectarines (GI:42)
- Raspberries (GI: 32) & Blueberries (GI: 54)
- Cherries (GI: 22)
- Grapefruit (GI: 25)
- Orange (Gi: 48)
- Peaches (GI: 28)
- Pears (GI: 33)
- Plums (GI: 24)
- Strawberries (GI: 40)
- Grapes (GI: 43)
- Mango (GI: 51)
You can also read: Top 10 Low Glycemic Index Vegetables
Low Glycemic Diet for Weight Loss
Low Glycemic Index (GI) diets cause short-term weight loss, but this weight loss is no greater than with higher GI diets. The claim that low glycemic index diets are the key to weight loss remains controversial. However, a modest reduction in the diet GI and a modest increase in the protein content of the diet do appear to improve diet monitoring and long-term weight maintenance. Still, experts in the field believe that the positive impact of low GI diets on weight loss and weight maintenance is overestimated.
- In the offensive phase, limiting dairy products, which are an important source of calcium and vitamin D, could potentially lead to a deficiency of these two important nutrients.
- Lack of offensive phase whole-grain cereal products could lead to constipation from lack of dietary fiber unless you consume lots of legumes and vegetables.
- Even if no other food group is totally to be avoided during all phases of this diet, there are still restrictions in all groups including fruits and vegetables, which could in the long term induce the yoyo effect and weight gain.
- Some foods in the green zone have a high saturated fat content like cheese and bacon.