Everyone who strives to have optimum blood sugar levels should at least try avoiding foods which are high on the glycemic index (GI), and the riper, more cooked, or processed a vegetable, fruit, or other food is, chances are it will be higher on the glycemic index, and the most common of these foods include bananas, watermelons, carrots, pineapples, parsnips, mashed or russet potatoes.
If you follow any of those popular diet programs, it is likely that the concept of carbohydrates is not too foreign to you, and are at least aware that there are good carbs, bad carbs, low carbs, or no carbs.
Carbohydrates can be difficult to understand, but should you suffer from diabetes or are at risk of developing this ailment, then you ought to learn as much as possible about carbs and how they affect your health. Thankfully, researchers have already made it simpler for us to understand.
The glycemic index is a method of quantifying the effect of certain foods on a person’s blood glucose level.
The number of the index represents a certain rise in blood sugar levels a couple of hours after eating and can range from 0 – 100, where 100 is pure glucose.
Foods with carbohydrates which take less time to digest will have a higher GI number than those that take more time to break down.
So, if you are trying to be cautious with your blood glucose levels, try avoiding foods that are high on the glycemic index.
But remember that the glycemic index is not ideal nor exact and it does not take into account the insulin response, which varies from person to person and is measured by the insulin index, but we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.
High Glycemic Index Fruits and Vegetables
It is not seldom we hear that fruits and vegetables are among the healthiest foods, and apart from one small but significant fact, that is true.
Five to 9 fruits or vegetables a day is the recommended amount to be healthy, but there are some fruits and vegetables that are high on the glycemic index and eating them may result in an increase in your blood sugar levels.
Have a look at the list below and see where your favorite foods:
Bananas are not easy to quantify, as while the GI number for bananas is 51, they vary a great deal depending on how ripe they are.
Bananas that are brown and spotted are packed with sugar, and this can classify them into the high GI category.
Pineapples have a GI of 66 and are on the upper end of the medium spectrum. The reason it’s included in this list is because fresh pineapples can drastically differ from caned ones, which are rich in sugar syrup. Always go for fresh pineapples when choosing between the two.
Carrots have a GI of 71 and are always healthy to consume, but with moderation.
The watermelon has a GI of 72, putting it high in the category.
On the GI scale, parsnips come in at a staggering 97, which is among the highest for vegetables.
As is the case with other fruits/vegetables on the list, where potatoes stand on the GI scale depends on how they are cooked and what they are served with, and their glycemic index can vary from 87 for instant mashed potatoes, to 111 for baked.