If you have been recently been diagnosed with diabetes, you may be interested in trying the glycemic diet to encourage natural weight loss and help manage your blood sugar levels. Using this diet, all food items are assigned a number from 1 to 100 to show their level of carbohydrates and how fast they get into the bloodstream. For a diabetic, or anyone looking to lose weight, the idea is to only consume foods with a glycemic index of 50 or less.
The glycemic diet is easy to get started on. Here’s how:
Study the Glycemic Index
Find a copy of the Glycemic Index online and look it over thoroughly to familiarize yourself with the different categories (and where different foods belong). There are many online resources with the Glycemic Index, including searchable databases where you can enter a food item in question to determine its GI and whether or not it is suitable for you to eat.
Study the rating system and its meanings. Green light foods are the best for your weight loss and will help aid in permanent weight loss. Yellow light foods are in the medium range, while red light foods are high in carbohydrates or fats and should be minimized in your diet. Keep in mind that you can pair higher-GI foods with lower-GI foods to create a meal that has an average GI. This is the ideal situation. If you do plan on eating higher GI foods, be sure to eat them with a protein or fat to slow down the effects of the carbohydrates in your bloodstream.
Research the Diet
Read about the general idea behind the diet, mainly to eat the right foods. Your body needs fats and carbohydrates to function, but it is important to consume the right carbohydrates and right fats to maintain your weight and health. This includes eating complex carbohydrates like many fruits and vegetables and healthy oils like monounsaturated and polyunsaturated ones.
Avoid Bad Fats and Bad Carbohydrates
Begin by avoiding all “bad” fats and carbohydrates in your diet. This includes all fried foods, processed flour, many processed foods, candy, milk shakes and more. Try replacing some of the things that you enjoy eating with comparable low-GI foods. The nice thing about this diet is that there is a lot of room to make substitutions instead of simply cutting out foods.
Focus on Green Light Foods
Load your diet with the healthy choices outlined by the green light foods. This includes plenty of good carbohydrates and a small amount of good fats. Eat plenty of lean proteins, healthy vegetables, and complex carbohydrates as outlined in the Gycemic Index. Snack on fruits, nuts and lowfat dairy like cottage cheese.
Practice self-control and common sense to follow the glycemic diet. If you break from daily portions and recommended servings, try to make it something from the green light foods, rather than something greasy and bad for you (such as a hamburger and fries or pizza). Whatever you do, practice moderation and understand that you are undergoing this diet to help manage your diabetes and prevent complications down the road.