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Glycemic index: controlling food cravings


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Do you experience food cravings when you know you are actually not hungry? This is likely due to spikes in your blood sugar levels, which can be controlled through a diet based around foods with low glycemic index.

According to a study done at the Research Center Hôtel-Dieu de Montréal (University of Montréal), diet based on foods with low glycemic index improves health, aids in weight loss, and even helps with the management of diseases like type II diabetes. So, what is the glycemic index and how can you take advantage of lowering it in your diet?

A typical Montréaler’s diet revolves around carbs—just think about all the baguettes, croissants, and pastries this wonderful city has to offer. Different types of carbs behave differently once they hit your body. The glycemic index measures how quickly a type of carbohydrate is absorbed into the bloodstream. Avoiding carbs that have high absorption rates will keep the blood sugar levels even, taking you off the rollercoaster of constant food cravings. A glycemic index of 70 or more is high, a 56-69 is medium, and a 55 or less is low. Here are some common foods and their approximate glycemic indexes:


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Beer

110

Potatoes

70-95

Sticky and puffed rice

85-90

Carrots (cooked)

85

White wheat flour

85

Doughnuts

75

Watermelon

75

Chocolate bar (with sugar added)

70

Cola drinks, soft drinks, sodas

70

Refined cereals (with sugar added), cornflakes

85-70

Standard and long-grain rice

70-60

White sugar (sucrose)

70

Couscous, semolina

65

Whole-grain bread

65

Ripe bananas

60

Ice cream

60

Oatmeal, porridge

60

Pizza

60

Cookies

55

Spaghetti (well cooked)

55

Basmati and brown rice

50

Whole wheat pasta

50

Pumpernickel bread

45

Whole cereals (no sugar added)

45

Buckwheat, kasha

40

Al dente pasta

40

Oats

40

Peanut butter (no suger added)

40

Most peas, beans, lentils

35

Most fresh fruits

35

Wild rice

35

Yogurt, milk

35

Carrots (raw)

30

Tomatoes

30

Most berries

25

Dark chocolate (more than 70% of cocoa content)

25

Eggplant, asparagus

20

Most nuts and seeds

15

All brans

15

Broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, celery, cucumber, salad, spinach, sweet peppers

15

Mushrooms

15

Tofu, soybean curd

15

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