Foods High on the Glycemic Index but Low on Glycemic Load
Some foods rank high on the glycemic index, which used to scare people into avoiding those foods altogether. But gone are the days when experts classified foods as good and bad according to the glycemic index alone. Thanks to the glycemic load, carrots and other high-glycemic fruits and veggies aren’t considered so bad for you anymore, which is a good thing as potatoes, carrots, watermelon, and the like are often loaded with important nutrients.
If you’ve been avoiding certain foods or avoiding a low-glycemic diet because some foods you love are considered bad, you can take these foods off of your taboo list. The following foods not only have a low glycemic load but are also healthy, low-calorie choices:
Cantaloupe (GI 65; GL 4): This fruit offers a full array of nutrients, including vitamin C, vitamin A, potassium, and fiber.
Papaya (GI 59; GL 10): This incredible fruit that you may not have eaten much has a rich, tropical taste and is high in vitamin A, vitamin C, potassium, folate, magnesium, and fiber.
Pineapple (GI 59; GL 7): Being a tropical fruit, pineapple is naturally loaded with vitamin C, but it also contains a special substance called bromelain, which has shown potential as an anti-inflammatory as well as a digestive aid.
Pumpkin (GI 75; GL 3): You can safely include pumpkin in your glycemic index diet thanks to its low glycemic load of 3. This food is an excellent source of vitamins A and C as well as fiber. It’s also wonderfully sweet and can be used in everything from soups to healthy desserts.
Watermelon (GI 72; GL 4): This delicious summer fruit may at first look like a high-glycemic food with its glycemic index of 72, but it actually has a very low glycemic load. Why? Because it’s made up of a lot of water, hence the name. Watermelon is also loaded in antioxidants with high levels of both vitamin C and vitamin A. It also contains lycopene, which is shown to be helpful for heart health.
When you take glycemic load into account, you find that nearly all fruits and vegetables are acceptable on your low-glycemic diet. This is an important realization because fruits and veggies (which are naturally low in calories) also provide the majority of nutrients and fiber in your diet. Including five to nine servings of fruits and vegetables in your diet will help you lose weight in a way that you can eat plenty of food and not starve yourself!