nutrition

Weight loss: how to lower the glycemic index (easily)?

A high glycemic index leads directly to weight gain, sugar cravings, and the risk of diabetes. Here’s how to opt for low-GI alternatives and how to change menus.

For a long time carbohydrates have been classified according to their composition, with complex carbohydrates on one side and simple carbohydrates on the other, assuming that the former were digested slowly and the latter quickly. Then we realized that this did not correspond to the physiological reality: “White bread, for example, which contains starch, causes the blood sugar level (glycaemia) to rise rapidly, which does not correspond. This is not the case with fruit, which contains fructose, a simple sugar, “explains Dr. Pierre Nys, nutritionist endocrinologist.

On the same topic

How to lower the glycemic index of our plates

In the 1980s, researchers from the University of Toronto, Canada, then devised a tool to classify carbohydrate foods based on their impact on blood sugar: the glycemic index. Foods with a high GI cause blood sugar levels to rise, which triggers a strong secretion of insulin, the hormone responsible for introducing sugar into cells. Problem, it also promotes the accumulation of fat. For this reason it is necessary to favor foods with a low glycemic index.

Only (small) complication: it is not always easy to navigate. The fast / slow sugar classification had the advantage of being simple. The glycemic index is less intuitive. “It depends on the composition of the food (type of carbohydrates, but also on the presence of fibers, lipids, proteins that will lower the GI) and on the way in which it is transformed “, says Dr. Jean-Michel Lecerf, head of the nutrition department of the Institut Pasteur de Lille. This requires simple information: eat a variety, favor whole foods, consume more fruits and vegetables, limit processed foods, and avoid sugary drinks.

We explain below how to treat yourself on a daily basis.

Low glycemic index menu: day 1

Breakfast

  • Fermented milk nature (such as buttermilk)
  • Toasted wholemeal bread with a little almond puree
  • Strawberry salad with mint

To lunch

  • Cauliflower Salad in vinaigrette and chia seeds
  • Cod fillet, buckwheat, spinach
  • Ricotta with a little raisins

Having dinner

Low glycemic index menu: day 2

Breakfast

  • Chicory tea
  • Blend of oat flakes, mulberries, raspberries, almonds and soy milk

To lunch

  • Radish with salt toast
  • Chicken breast, spelled, green beans
  • Pineapple carpaccio and ground flax seeds

Having dinner

  • Miso soup
  • Buckwheat pasta with peas and strips of ham
  • milk flakes

Low glycemic index menu: day 3

Breakfast

  • Rooibos Unsweetened
  • Rye bread with a little cream cheese
  • Apple

To lunch

  • green asparagus in vinaigrette and almond flakes
  • Veal cutlet, brown rice, Provencal tomatoes
  • Sheep yogurt

Having dinner

  • Sardine rillettes (crushed sardines + fromage blanc + tarragon)
  • Dahl of lentils and basmati rice
  • Kiwi

Low glycemic index menu: day 4

Breakfast

  • Green tea Unsweetened
  • Pancakes with buckwheat flour and banana slices

To lunch

  • Grated carrots
  • Mackerel baked with sweet potatoes, green salad
  • Homemade compote with pieces

Having dinner

  • Leek vinaigrette with chopped hazelnuts
  • Wok of tofu, Chinese cabbage, edamame, corn and bean sprouts
  • Ricotta with berries (frozen)

Low glycemic index menu: day 5

Breakfast

  • coffee without sugar
  • Sourdough bread and slice of white ham (+ 1 knob of butter or cream cheese) Pear

To lunch

  • Avocado with lemon juice
  • Filet mignon, quinoa, zucchini with thyme
  • Goat yogurt

Having dinner

  • Large salad of lentils, cucumber, goat cheese, parsley and pumpkin seeds
  • Poached pear with vanilla

Low GI menu: day 6

Breakfast

  • Sugar-free pomegranate juice
  • Blend of oat flakes, hazelnuts, diced dried apricots, blackberries and soy milk

To lunch

  • Red cabbage, apple and beetroot salad
  • Rabbit with mustard, wholemeal tagliatelle, braised escarole
  • Carpaccio of mango and hemp seeds

Having dinner

  • homemade vegetable soup
  • Scrambled eggs, green salad and wholemeal bread
  • milk flakes

Low glycemic index menu: day 7

Breakfast

  • Simple almond milk
  • Wholemeal carrot cake
  • Strawberries

To lunch

  • Spring roll
  • Cod fillet, leeks and split pea fondue
  • yogurt with coconut milk

Having dinner

  • Tabbouleh cauliflower
  • Endive with ham
  • Cinnamon baked apple

Our experts :

  • Marie-Laure André, dietician nutritionist and Nathalie Négro, dietician in charge of the nutritional center of the thermal baths of Brides-les-Bains
  • Dr Pierre Nys, endocrinologist-nutritionist, in charge of the Paris hospitals and Dr Jean-Michel Lecerf, head of the nutrition department of the Institut Pasteur de Lille

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A homemade cake rather than a baker’s pastry
Aside from a few trendy pastries that have embarked on low-glycemic recipes, most pastries use white sugar and white flour. Tasting one of their sweets in the afternoon is guaranteed to raise your blood sugar. The ideal is to prepare homemade biscuits and cakes with wholemeal flours (spelled, rye, buckwheat …) and low glycemic index sugars (acacia honey, coconut sugar, agave syrup …). And possibly add seeds (chia, pumpkin, sunflower, etc.) and seasonal fruit.

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