Choosing Low Glycemic Index Foods - Allergy Advice

Choosing Low Glycemic Index Foods

Published: 5th December 2022 · Written by Donna Mastriani

If you suffer from an intolerance or allergy, it could limit your diet choices when you have to refrain from eating certain foods to avoid symptoms. For individuals living with type two diabetes or looking to lose weight, you may be wondering how to plan your diet around your allergies or intolerances while keeping sugar levels down. With this, you could benefit from referring to the food glycemic index. Within this guide, we will look into what the glycemic index is, including the difference between high and low glycemic index foods categorised by food groups.

What is a glycemic index?

The glycemic index (GI) is where foods are ranked on a scale of 1-100 based on how your blood sugar is impacted after eating a type of food. Foods are categorised into three glycemic index ratings:

  • Low: 55 or less.
  • Medium: 56–69.
  • High: 70 or above.

High GI foods are broken down and digested quickly so they cause rapid spikes in blood glucose levels. This typically means foods high in refined carbohydrates and sugar have a high glycemic index. Therefore, choosing low glycemic foods could be useful when you are attempting to keep your blood sugar down.

How does the glycemic index help?

If you’re looking for ways to take control of sugar levels in what you consume, then looking at the glycemic index of foods could be beneficial, particularly for those with diabetes who struggle with maintaining healthy blood glucose levels.

It can also be helpful for individuals looking to lose weight, as blood sugar increases can encourage your body to store fat rather than burn it. It is important to note, however, that foods with low GI are not all necessarily healthy and not all high GI foods are unhealthy. Instead, low GI foods could help you feel fuller for longer since blood sugar levels rise and fall more slowly, thus allowing you to control your appetite more effectively.

Glycemic Index Chart

For people looking for the glycemic index score of different foods, we want to help by showing you the glycemic index of the most searched foods. We’ve split this information into tables separated by fruit, vegetables, carbohydrates, grains/cereals/legumes, and sweeteners.

All glycemic index numbers are an average and will vary depending on factors such as different sized portions and different food types e.g. macaroni vs penne pasta. The glycemic index can also vary person to person, depending on how their body processes foods.

Fruits glycemic index

Although fruit is a healthy addition to any diet, fruit contains hidden sugars that occur naturally. There are some fruits with a lower glycemic index than others, which you can see below.

Food TypeGlycemic Index (on average)
Grapefruit Glycemic Index25
Apricot Glycemic Index34
Plum Glycemic Index35
Nectarine Glycemic Index35
Pears Glycemic Index38
Apple Glycemic Index40
Strawberries Glycemic Index41
Peach Glycemic Index42
Orange Glycemic Index42
Coconut Glycemic Index42
Grapes Glycemic Index46
Pomegranate Glycemic Index53
Blueberries Glycemic Index53
Banana Glycemic Index58
Watermelon Glycemic Index72
Melon Glycemic Index72

Glycemic index of vegetables

Below, you can see the glycemic index of some of the most commonly searched for vegetables.

Food TypeGlycemic Index (on average)
Broccoli Glycemic Index15
Green Beans Glycemic Index32
Carrots Glycemic Index (boiled)33
Butternut Squash Glycemic Index51
Sweetcorn Glycemic Index55
Beetroot Glycemic Index61
Sweet Potato Glycemic Index64
Swede Glycemic Index72
Potato Glycemic Index (boiled)78

Glycemic carbohydrates

When carbohydrates are eaten, the digestive system breaks them down into sugar which enters the bloodstream. Because of this, it’s important to look at the glycemic index of different carbohydrates.

Food TypeGlycemic Index (on average)
Glycemic Index Brown Rice50
Basmati Rice Glycemic Index50
Quinoa Glycemic Index53
Pasta Glycemic Index53
Sourdough Bread Glycemic Index54
Pizza Glycemic Index60 (when plain)
Couscous Glycemic Index60
Chapati Glycemic Index62
Rye Bread Glycemic Index65
Jasmine Rice Glycemic Index68
White Rice Glycemic Index72
Brown Bread Glycemic Index73
Rice Cake Glycemic Index82
White Bread Glycemic Index100

Glycemic index of sweeteners

For individuals with diabetes, it is important to regulate sugar levels, meaning many people  look to sugar alternatives so that blood glucose levels do not reach too high. Alternatives include sweeteners or natural sugars such as honey and dates.

Food TypeGlycemic Index (on average)
Stevia Glycemic Index0
Carob Syrup Glycemic Index15
Agave Syrup Glycemic Index17
Dark Chocolate Glycemic Index23
Fructose Glycemic Index25
Date Glycemic Index42
Milk Chocolate Glycemic Index42
Maple Syrup Glycemic Index54
Manuka Honey Glycemic Index57
Honey Glycemic Index58
Sucralose Glycemic Index65
Sugar Glycemic Index65
Glucose Glycemic Index100

Glycemic index of grains, cereals and legumes

Food TypeGlycemic Index (on average)
Kidney Beans Glycemic Index24
Barley Glycemic Index28
Pearl Barley Glycemic Index28
Gram Flour Glycemic Index29
Black Beans Glycemic Index30
Glycemic Index Of Beans33
Buckwheat Glycemic Index34
Steel Cut Oats Glycemic Index42
Bulgur Wheat Glycemic Index46
Corn Glycemic Index52
Oats Glycemic Index55
Bran Flakes Glycemic Index55
Shredded Wheat Glycemic Index67

Managing diabetes with allergies

The first thing to consider when adapting your diet is whether you’re sure which allergy or intolerance is causing your symptoms. You can discover this through taking a Complete Body Test which analyses your blood sample against 38 allergies and 79 intolerances. Once you have your results, you can tailor your diet to ensure you are eating healthily and avoiding foods that cause symptoms. With this complete test, you are also entitled to a free 30 minute consultation with a nutritional therapist, who can help you to form an optimal diet.

If you’d like further information on how to manage your allergy or intolerance in addition to taking control of sugar levels, you can speak to a member of our team for advice on testing.

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