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Glycemic Load

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GL is a measure of how the impact that a carbohydrate will have on the blood sugar levels, and takes into account the type of carbohydrate

There are three classifications for the GL:

  • Low: 10 or fewer

  • Medium: 11 to 19

  • High: 20 or more


The rate at which a particular food raises the blood sugar levels depends on three factors:

  • The TYPE of carbohydrates they contain

  • The nutrient composition and how COMPLEX the carbohydrate is (which will judge if it will be absorbed quickly or slowly)

  • The AMOUNT of carbohydrate consumed

A very common way of measuring the impact of the carbohydrate of a food will have on the blood sugars is  the GLYCEMIC INDEX (or GI for short). However, the GI is a relative measure that doesn’t take into account the AMOUNT of food consumed and for this reason it is often criticised. 

In order to overcome this problem, the GLYCEMIC LOAD (GL) rating was developed. The GL is a measure of how the impact that a carbohydrate will have on the blood sugar levels, and takes into account the TYPE of carbohydrate (as measured by the GI) as well as the QUANTITY consumed.

There are three classifications for the GL:

  • Low: 10 or fewer

  • Medium: 11 to 19

  • High: 20 or more


In order to calculate the GL, you use the GI value of that particular food and adjust it for the quantity of the food.

A recommended value for the daily GL for a person who either has Type 2 Diabetes, insulin resistance or just someone who would like a Diabetes preventative diet, should approximate to:

  • Breakfast: GL below or equal to 25

  • Lunch: GL below or equal to 30

  • Dinner: GL below to 20

  • Snacks (maximum 2 per day): GL below or equal to 10

This is in accordance to the Glycemic Index Foundation, an Australian nonprofit organisation, raising awareness about the low GI diet, which recommends that people should be aiming to consume a total daily GL under 100.

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There is mounting evidence from a large body of research that a low glycemic load (GL) diet, reduces the risk of



  • Helps CONTROL BLOOD GLUCOSE in people with diabetes

  • May help with WEIGHT MANAGEMENT

  • Some evidence suggests that a low GL diet reduces the risk of CANCER (by reducing the huge spikes of insulin)


A sample low GI menu for 1 week


Below I give an outline of a one-week LOW GL diet. The choice of foods was chosen carefully to ensure that the cumulative  GL of each meal is kept to the minimum and to the one required for a proper diabetes diet.

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  • Breakfast: Oatmeal made with rolled oats, Coconut/Soya/Almond milk, pumpkin seeds, and frozen forrest fruits

  • Lunch: Oven cooked salmon with Quinoa and avocado salad

  • Dinner: beef stir-fry with vegetables, served with boiled couscous 



  • Breakfast: Toast with protein bread, avocado, tomato, and smoked salmon

  • Lunch: Roast or BBQ Chicken, with bulgar wheat, served with cheese salad 

  • Dinner: Chicken/turkey sandwich with protein bread, served with a salad

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  • Breakfast: Omelet with mushrooms, spinach, tomato, and mozzarella cheese

  • Lunch: Black eye beans with Greens and canned tuna (if bread is required this HAS to be pure protein bread)

  • Dinner: Yogurt with x3 spoons rolled oats, stevia sugar, almonds and goji berries



  • Breakfast: Low fat strained Greek yogurt, with x3 spoons of rolled oats, cinnamon and berries

  • Lunch: Grilled fish (tuna or white fish) with steamed vegetables +/- artichoke puree

  • Dinner: Chicken salad made with whole Konjak (0 carb) pasta



  • Breakfast: Quinoa with Coconut/Soya/Almond milk, cinnamon, frozen berries, goji berries

  • Lunch: Canned chickpeas cooked with turmeric and caramelised onion

  • Dinner: whole grain wrap with boiled chicken breast, sliced egg and lettuce


  • Breakfast: eggs with smoked salmon and tomatoes with x2 RYVITA crackers

  • Lunch: Homemade beef burgers, with boiled egg, and lentil salad

  • Dinner: grilled chops with steamed greens and mashed pumpkin


  • Breakfast: Buckwheat pancakes with berries

  • Lunch: Steak or red meat, with quinoa, cauliflower puree and salad

  • Dinner: x3 RYVITA crackers, fried egg (using x1 spray of 1cal olive oil), served with grilled halloumi cheese and sliced tomato

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