The Relationship between Blood Sugar Levels & Weight Loss

blood & weight

One of the simplest ways to lose weight on a long term basis is by managing hunger levels according to a meal plan that can be sustained permanently. Fibre’s role in restraining the appetite is well known, but the management of glucose levels in the blood is equally important. Glycemic index first emerged as a way to manage insulin stability in diabetes patients. Since then, its usefulness to those without sugar level problems became a tool for weight loss. The term, `glycemic index` refers to how suddenly carbohydrates bring spikes and dips in blood sugar levels. Scientists had previously believed that simple carbohydrates had a more pronounced effect on insulin while complex carbohydrates added stability. After extensive studies, surprising results emerged, revealing that many simple carbohydrates had a stabilizing effect and that some grains had varying GI levels dependent on how well they had been cooked. This changed the way people approached their meals. While GI is an efficient tool to add to a weight loss program, it cannot work in isolation. Overeating on a low GI diet will produce as much weight gain as overeating on high GI foods. The system, therefore, needs to accompany a controlled eating plan.


Low GI diets bring the benefits of sustained sugar levels, preventing light-headedness and sudden appetite changes only hours after eating a full meal. As such, their role is similar to that of high fibre diets in that they prevent hypoglycemia, which in turn prevents cravings for unhealthy carbohydrates. The body needs carbohydrates in order to provide the cells with the energy they need to function healthily. The pancreas is responsible for keeping blood sugar levels balanced, but eating high GI foods can cause problems for this organ. Blood sugar levels rise suddenly and fall equally quickly, which can cause insulin resistance.


By maintaining a diet that consists mostly of foods with GIs of below 55, with some medium GI foods between 56 and 59, blood sugar spikes can be minimized, which keeps appetites balanced. Hunger is delayed, which is said to cause gradual weight loss. Those on GI diets typically do not count calories and are given enough room to occasionally indulge in high GI foods. For this reason, GI plans are a popular option that offers the luxury to choose the foods one prefers to eat. Trials suggest that low GI diets do not cause weight loss single-handedly, but instead, make low calorie diets easier to sustain. Their role in reducing blood sugar, lowering LDL cholesterol levels and reducing blood pressure has been endorsed by the American Diabetes Association, but calorie control remains a factor. In this regard, GI diets make it simple to cut out a limited number of calories while making exercise routines easier to maintain.


Changes in diet should be done under a doctor`s supervision and GI diets require a special level of expertise since GI levels cannot be judged intuitively. Potatoes are simple carbohydrates, yet they have a surprisingly low glycemic index. Durum wheat pasta is another simple carb with an unexpectedly low GI level. The foods that are added to grains affect GI levels overall, with lean white meats, certain seafood and grilled vegetables decreasing a meal`s GI significantly. GI diets make foods that are omitted from most diets a viable, if occasional, option. A serving of sponge cake has a medium GI of 66 and can be used as a treat that replaces the comparatively high GI of pizza, which has a level of 86. Similarly, reducing the GI level of a meal is made more effective with the simple replacement of soy milk (43 GI) instead of full cream milk.


The GI diets are made more complex by the inclusion of glycemic load, which takes the serving size into account when calculating the GI. It can be calculated by multiplying the GI with the serving size and dividing that figure by 100. This way, dieters can take all weight loss factors into account without complex calorie counting.


Whether training routines include miles of tarmac or the serene asanas of a yoga class, exercise reduces blood sugar quickly. By pairing a fitness regimen with a diet of low GI foods, these activity-related sugar dips can be reduced, keeping energy at optimum levels to improve the quality of workouts. Athletes using a low GI diet need to take in meals that support their activity levels and with the aid of meal plans and nutrients that take control of blood sugar levels, results can be improved drastically.