Understanding the Glycemic Load Index – How is it Different From the Glycemic Index?


Glycemic load index also referred to as GL is a ranking system of the carbohydrate content in portions of food based on its glycemic index (GI) and portion size. A relatively new way of examining effects of carbohydrate consumption taking GI into consideration but has a wider scope than GI itself. This is because GI food values only show the rate a sugar is produced from carbohydrates but does not discuss the amount of carbohydrates there is in a serving of food. GL on the other hand sees the importance of this so as to know a food’s effects on blood sugar level.

Food with high GI are more easily digested and absorbed by the body therefore making it prone to a sudden rise of blood sugar level. That is true but GL further explains that food with low GI can give a rise on blood sugar as high as a high GI food can if taken in large amount. So it is not just the GI but also the quantity that should be taken in consideration.

Bear in mind that the more a food is processed before you eat them, the higher would be its GL level. This is the rule of thumb when choosing low GL food. You’ll get higher load value eating the same quantity of canned beans than the boiled ones. This is because processed food are easily digested, thus it is faster to convert to sugar.

Glycemic load index, like the glycemic index, is also essential in curing or managing diseases such as diabetes and also helps in weight loss. Health maintenance programmes use the concept of GL for it helps manage blood sugar levels. With the use of GL the blood sugar level can be monitored and this helps prevent the onset of diabetes. On the aspect of weight loss, GL explains that it is not necessary to just eat low GI meals because the quantity of the food you take also matters. High GI meals will have the same effect as low GI meals if the latter is not taken in moderation.

Glycemic index explains to us a lot of things. These are things that we should ponder on if we like to live a healthier life.

Melissa McKyler is a work at home mom and health nut. For more great information about understanding the glycemic load index be sure to visit http://www.GlycemicIndexAnswers.com