Protein, Fats, Carbohydrates and the Glycemic Index (GI)
Although the GI was initially developed to measure how fast carbohydrates are digested and transformed into glucose as they travel through the blood streams, the same concept is applied with protein and fats. Research and studies show that unlike the carbohydrates, protein and fats slow down foods from leaving the stomach. The slow digestion of food is mainly attributed to the fact that protein and fats require time to be fully digested. In fact, when a diet is composed of various high protein food, the protein can significantly lower the GI of carbohydrates that go along with the protein, thus resulting to the slow increase of blood sugar.
High Protein Food Can Slow Down Food Digestion
As clearly stated, the glycemic index has been used to measure how fast foods loaded by carbohydrates are transformed into blood sugar. Today, this system is now also being employed on high protein foods. The purpose is to monitor that foods which are easily digested by our system trigger blood sugar to rise to a panicking level, which results to a litany of health problems like the diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. To control the rapid rise of blood sugar, high protein food have been suggested to be incorporated in every day meal so that blood sugar may not rapidly rise. They are not easily digested, thus resulting to the slow absorption of sugar. Now, when sugar stays in a healthy level, we can also expect a healthier life.
Scale Structure of the Glycemic Index
In order to understand why there are foods which are easily digested and turned into glucose, the glycemic index table is used to measure this movement, whether the food contains carbohydrates, protein or fats. Foods belonging to the low scale have a GI of 55 or less, while foods belonging to the scale of 56 to 59 are classified as medium, but foods belonging to the high scale have a GI count of 70 or more. As expected, protein foods, including fatty foods, which have a low GI, which give a slow increase in blood sugar; while foods belonging to the higher scale give a rapid increase in blood sugar.
Most Proteins Have Low GI Compared to Carbohydrates
Unlike in carbohydrates, most protein foods have low glycemic index. This is a welcome development since many people are turning to these type of foods as their primary source of diets due to the fact that they can slow down food digestion leading them to feel full for a longer period of time. Depending on the way they are prepared, nearly all protein foods found in our kitchen have relatively low GI, like cheese (38-41), pork (37-38), beef (34-36), milk (35-360), lamb (33) chicken (31), fish (31) and turkey (30), with the exception of soy protein (80-88) and egg (80-82).
High Protein Food Maintain Blood Sugar
The popularity of the high protein food can be attributed to its being a major factor in the maintenance of blood sugar in our system. In fact, studies reveal that 50 to 60% of the total protein and fat intake are transformed into glucose but neither of this percentage actually affects blood sugar. In other words, foods rich in protein and fats do not contribute to the rise of blood sugar in our system. Finally, a diet consisting of high protein foods along with reasonable amount of fats are not only advisable, but highly recommended especially among people with diabetes.