Low Glycemic Index Diets Better For Weight Loss

Armen Hareyan's picture

Low Glycemic Index Diets

A diet of foods less likely to spike blood sugar levels helps dieters lose more weight.

Put aside the white bread and pick up an apple.

"Losing weight is very difficult and many people are unable to sustain a weight-loss diet. The low glycemic index diet is satisfying and has proven benefits," said review co-author Elizabeth Elliott, Ph.D., professor at the University of Sydney, The Children's Hospital at Westmead.


The glycemic index (GI) ranks carbohydrate-rich foods based on their effect on blood sugar levels. Compared to high GI foods such as white rice and French fries, low GI foods, such as lentils, sweet potatoes and apples produce more consistent blood glucose levels. Previous studies have indicated that keeping blood sugar levels steady throughout the day may stimulate more weight loss in obese people.

Researchers evaluated randomized controlled trials that compared weight loss in people eating foods low on the glycemic index to weight loss in people on higher GI diets or other types of weight loss plans.

Six trials, involving 202 adults from Australia, France, South Africa, Denmark and the United States were included in the review. The diets lasted from five weeks to six months.

The review appears in the latest issue of The Cochrane Library, a publication of The Cochrane Collaboration, an international organization that evaluates medical research. Systematic reviews draw evidence-based conclusions about medical practice after considering both the content and quality of existing medical trials on a topic.

The review found that dieters focused on eating low GI foods dropped significantly more weight


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