The glycemic index pertains to the metabolism of carbohydrates, and how quickly they are converted to blood sugar (glucose). A carbohydrate with a high glycemic index is one that is quickly absorbed and metabolized into blood sugar. A carbohydrate with a low glycemic index is one that is absorbed and converted more slowly into blood sugar.
The importance of the glycemic index is that when a carbohydrate is rapidly converted to blood sugar, the blood sugar rises quickly. This leads to a rapid rise in insulin, in an attempt by the body to lower the blood sugar level. In some people, this can lead to a rapid fall in blood sugar, and at times even an abnormally low blood sugar. This low blood sugar leads to hunger in an attempt to raise the blood sugar level. The fall out from this is that, when a carbohydrate with a high glycemic index is eaten, less energy (calories) is expended to metabolize it, and more calories are taken in sooner, as compared to one with a low glycemic index. As such, it is advised that patients needing to maintain their weight or control their blood sugar should select carbohydrates with a lower glycemic index.
|MALTOSE||105||HIGH GLYCEMIC INDEX|
|HONEY||75||= CONVERTED QUICKLY|
|SUCROSE||60||TO BLOOD SUGAR.|
|RAISINS||64||LOW GLYCEMIC INDEX|
|BANANAS||62||= CONVERTED QUICKLY|
|ORANGE JUICE||46||TO BLOOD SUGAR.|
|POTATO (NEW), BOILED||70|
|BREAD, WHOLE GRAIN||72|