Weight loss and sugar in fruit and vegetables

watermelon

When trying to lose weight, avoiding high sugar foods such as refined carbohydrates like bread and carbonated drinks is fairly straight forward. However for other foods often the glycaemic index is useful as a guide. This can be handy but also perplexing!

The glycaemic index (very simplistically) is a way of measuring how quickly and by how much your body converts what is being eaten into sugar in your body. Some fruits are low and others high on the glycaemic index – some vary according to dried versus fresh. For example apricots dried are 32 (low) on the glycaemic index but apricots canned are 64 (almost double). Confusing!

Vegetables are a little more straight forward and easier to understand – essentially– cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage and celery, spinach, mushrooms and green beans are 0 on the glycaemic index – YAY! However peas, tomato (which is actually a fruit as it has seeds in it) and of course your root vegetables and corn are higher on the glycaemic index – including potato a whopping 104! To add to this is the glycaemic load – the quantity – so while carrots are high on the glycaemic index, they are low on the glycaemic load; sweet potato is a quarter of the glycaemic load of a white potato.

The usual rhetoric of “a balanced diet” is all well and good but if weight loss is your short term goal, then considering the glycaemic index and glycaemic load may be a good place to start. Still confused? Make an appointment with Healthy Vitality TODAY and set yourself on the path to better health.

Glycaemic Index and Glycaemic Load
Food Index Serving Size (g) Load
VEGETABLES
Potato 104 213g (1 med) 36.4
Parsnip 97 78g (1/2 cup) 11.6
Carrot, raw 92 15g (1 large) 1
Beets, canned 64 246g (1/2 cup) 9.6
Corn, yellow 55 166g (1 cup) 61.5
Sweet Potato 54 133g (1 cup) 12.4
Yam 51 136g (1 cup) 16.8
Peas, Frozen 48 72g (1/2 cup) 3.4
Tomato 38 123g (1 med) 1.5
Broccoli, cooked 0 78g (1/2 cup) 0
Cabbage, cooked 0 75g (1/2 cup) 0
Celery, raw 0 62g (1 stalk) 0
Cauliflower 0 100g (1 cup) 0
Green Beans 0 135g (1 cup) 0
Mushrooms 0 70g (1 cup) 0
Spinach 0 30g (1 cup) 0
FRUIT
Watermelon 72 152g (1 cup) 7.2
Pineapple, raw 66 155g (1 cup) 11.9
Cantaloupe 65 177g (1 cup) 7.8
Apricot, canned in
light syrup 64 253g (1 cup) 24.3
Raisins 64 43g (small box) 20.5
Papaya 60 140g (1 cup) 6.6
Peaches, canned,
heavy syrup 58 262g (1 cup) 28.4
Kiwi, w/ skin 58 76g (1 fruit) 5.2
Fruit Cocktail,
drained 55 214g (1 cup) 19.8
Peaches, canned,
light syrup 52 251g (1 cup) 17.7
Banana 51 118g (1 med) 12.2
Mango 51 165g (1 cup) 12.8
Orange 48 140g (1 fruit) 7.2
Pears, canned in
pear juice 44 248g (1 cup) 12.3
Grapes 43 92g (1 cup) 6.5
Strawberries 40 152g (1 cup) 3.6
Apples, w/ skin 39 138g (1 med) 6.2
Pears 33 166g (1 med) 6.9
Apricot, dried 32 130g (1 cup) 23
Prunes 29 132g (1 cup) 34.2
Peach 28 98g (1 med) 2.2
Grapefruit 25 123g (1/2 fruit)2.8
Plum 24 66g (1 fruit) 1.7
Cherries, raw 22 117g (1 cup) 3.7
Source: http://www.alsearsmd.com/glycemic-index/ retrieved 17th March 2014

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