For those of you up-to-date with popular diets, the Low Glycemic Diet, based on the Glycemic Index (GI), may be familiar to you. A low glycemic diet is believed to help prevent insulin resistance and other health complications. A Low GI Diet – Glycemic Index Search, developed by Webtopia, is an iPhone app that contains a listing of the glycemic index of over 2,000 different foods. This application is designed to help people make healthier food choices through quick reference information.
Scientists developed the glycemic index as a guide to the effect of certain carbohydrates on blood sugar levels. The Glycemic Diet is based on the fact that some foods affect blood sugar slower and steadier than other foods. The foods that have less effect on blood glucose levels are termed low glycemic foods. The Low GI Diet app divides food into categories based on their glycemic index:
- low (index of 55 or less)
- medium (index of 56 to 69)
- high (index of over 70)
The index numbers are color coded so that you can see at a glance whether a food is low, medium, or high on the index. You can either browse between each category, or you can enter in a search term to find a specific food. All of the information has been gathered from the National Cancer Institute in the USA and the Department of Agriculture. The Info category gives a brief explanation of the concept of the Low Glycemic Diet and how to use the application
Although this application can be a handy guide for people watching their blood sugar levels, the glycemic index should not be your only guide for choosing foods. There are many other factors that should be included in your choices, such as overall fat content, sugar content, and whether or not the food has been highly processed. For instance, according to the glycemic index, Black forest Chocolate Cherry cake has a glycemic index of 38 (which is considered low), but a whole wheat pita has a glycemic index of 71 (considered high). That does not mean, however, that cake is the healthier choice. Many things can affect a food’s glycemic value: how much of that food is consumed, if it eaten with something else, and whether that food has been cooked in fat. There are actually times when a person needs to consume higher glycemic foods, such as before or after an intense workout.
Overall, The Low GI Diet app can be a handy tool if you know how to use it properly. There are so many things that factor into glycemic response that it is a good idea to read up on the Gycemic Diet before relying on this application alone. It is important to consider other sources of information (such as nutrition labels) in addition to the glycemic index when trying to make healthy food choices.
A Low GI Diet – Glycemic Index Search requires the iPhone OS 2.0 or later and is compatible with iPhone and iPod Touch.