What is a glycemic load? Our bodies must convert the starches and sugars in foods into blood glucose to meet our basic energy needs. The glycemic index (GI) is a measurement of how fast the body breaks down starches and sugars into blood glucose after a food or drink is consumed. The glycemic load is determined by multiplying a food’s glycemic index by the amount of carbohydrate it contains.The glycemic load of any given meal is based on three things: portions size, glycemic index, and fiber. If you have ever followed the glycemic index of foods, like I have, then you know there is much to appreciate about taking portion size into consideration. I once followed a therapeutic diet at a time when I was made to feel guilty for eating a carrot for fear of the sugar it contained. I stopped eating fruit for an entire year and now I shudder to think about all of the nutrition and deliciousness I gave up due the fear of spiking my blood sugar.
Why does this matter? Normalizing our blood sugar and preventing dips and spikes reduces stress on our bodies on many levels. Just by being aware of our blood sugar levels and keeping them in check will reduce adrenal stress and promote a longer, healthier life. Adding fat to any meal will slow the absorption of sugar into the blood stream. Healthy fats should be the mainstay of our caloric intake, so if you want to eat something with higher carbs, add some quality fat. The glycemic load combined with the positive manipulation of sugars fats and protein, or general knowledge of food combining, has opened up the flood gates for what we can eat when we are considering both nutrition and blood-sugar levels. This is where my brain and culinary passions thrive, in walking this line. Where there once were no carrots, now there is strawberries and cream!