THE most important key in keeping a healthy lifestyle and managing body weight is having a balanced and proper diet. People who want to maintain their slender figures, most especially those who want to shed some pounds must go for nutritious foods that the body needs on a daily basis.
Medical and nutrition experts state that a balanced meal consists of the right amounts of macronutrients such as protein, carbohydrates and fats. Protein, which is needed by the body to build, repair, and maintain muscle tissues, can be found in meat, fish and dairy. Carbohydrates, which is used by the body as a source of energy and by the brain as sustenance to keep the mind alert and focused, can be extracted from food rich in starch (complex carbohydrates) such as potato, rice, bread, pasta, and cereals, and in sugar (simple carbohydrates). Fats, on the other hand, are also necessary for a healthy diet as some of these are considered essential fatty acids for the body’s metabolic processes.
These three nutrients all contain calories which is used by the body to produce energy. Among these, carbohydrates, although it provides the quickest form of energy, has the greatest amount of glucose which is both used by the body right away, and some is stored in the muscles and liver which may be released when the body needs it. The glucose which is not stored is immediately absorbed into the bloodstream and this affects a person’s blood sugar levels. The measure on how each type of carbohydrate affects sugar levels, known as the Glycaemic Index (GI), runs from 1-100 describing how fast or slow each is broken down and absorbed in the bloodstream.
Foods that have a low GI and have a ranking between 0 and 55 are those that are broken down slowly and don’t have a strong impact on blood sugar levels while foods that have a high GI are those with a ranking between 70 and 100 have a sudden impact causing blood sugar levels to rise.
This means that in a daily meal plan, there is a need to go for healthy types of carbs that have low GI. These complex and slower-acting carbs include multigrain bread, brown rice, oats, grains and low GI fruits such as apples, oranges, pears, grapefruit, peaches, plums, mangoes, and bananas.
Aside from having small or no effect on blood sugar levels, low GI food in Singapore has many other benefits which can help a person feel fuller longer and reduce appetite, maintain ideal body weight, reduce the risk of Type II Diabetes and heart ailments, and also help people with diabetes to control blood sugar levels.
On the other hand, foods that have high GI are known as fast-acting carbs and cause blood sugar levels to rise rampantly. These are the foods that are indeed hard to resist—cakes, cookies, candies, chocolates, soda, and sweetened juice drinks and beverages.
While these so-called “unhealthy carbs” highly affect blood sugar levels, it doesn’t mean that a person must not eat these foods anymore. The key to maintaining a healthy and sexy figure is always eating everything in moderation. Eating these sweet delights must be that so-called ‘once in a while’ treat each one is entitled to after a hard day’s work.