What’re the glycemic index and glycemic load and why do they matter to me?
The glycemic index is a number determined in the lab, for how fast any carbohydrate food (grains, desserts, sodas, vegetables and fruits) convert to blood glucose during digestion. The index is about the speed of this conversion. When it digests quickly you get a quick rise of blood sugar, which is toxic. White sugar is 100. Below 55 is considered low.
The glycemic load is a measure of the absolute quantity of glucose that is actually in what you eat—so it’s about amount, and it is serving-size dependent. While both measurements matter, the glycemic load is more important for the real world. As an example, watermelon has a high glycemic index at 76—it converts to sugar quickly. But a serving of watermelon doesn’t have much sugar in it, so the glycemic load of one cup of watermelon balls has a glycemic load of just 3 (up to 10 is considered low.)
Glycemic numbers matter because they’re an indication of how much blood sugar and insulin you end up with from the foods you eat and blood sugar and insulin are inflammatory to the max!