Eating vegetables with low glycemic index help you lose weight and keep you satiated longer. High glycemic index foods are; potato (baked, broiled, fried, mashed, french fries), canned or frozen corn, parsnips, and winter squash. High GI foods spike your blood sugar levels quickly.
So, are these spikes unhealthy? Yes, after eating High GI foods; your body demands more insulin and your average blood glucose level rises. Also, after these spikes, of course, they need to come down; and they come crashing down fast. These dips lead to more hunger, carb cravings, and lower energy.
Before we start our list of healthy vegetables with low glycemic index; let’s take a look at what exactly glycemic index is:
What is a Glycemic Index?
Glycemic index (GI for short) is a list that shows which foods can increase your blood glucose levels slowly and quickly. Foods with low GI release glucose slowly and steadily; on the other end of the spectrum, high GI foods release glucose quickly.
People choose foods with low GI to lose weight and stay satiated longer. Also, it’s important to note that; diabetic people should eat foods with low GI, remember that; after eating high GI foods your body demands more insulin.
Type 1 diabetic people; already have low amounts of insulin. In contrast, type 2 diabetic people have high levels of insulin. High GI foods take these extreme edges to the limit, a rapid increase of blood sugar is not ideal for them. Low glycemic index foods release sugar slowly and steadily; which is why diabetic people should choose them.
However, a regular person might need high GI foods especially after exercising. High GI foods give energy pretty quickly.
So, here are the glycemic index numeric values:
- Low: 55 or less
- Medium: 56–69
- High: 70 or above
Most foods that are high in refined carbs and sugar are high GI. Compared to that; foods with high protein, fat, or fiber generally are low GI. Keep in mind that, foods with no carbs like; meat, fish, spices, herbs, and oils are not on the glycemic index list.
Also, you should know that GI changes depending on the cooking method, ripeness, sugar type, and processing. For example, a raw carrot has a different GI value than a cooked carrot.
Why Should You Follow a Low Glycemic Index? Benefits of Low Glycemic Index Foods
If you want to;
- Lose or maintain your weight
- To be more healthy
- Keep your blood sugar levels steady because you are diabetic
- Reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes
- Improve pregnancy outcomes (1)
- Manage PCOS
- Improve concentration
- Reduce acne
Besides following a low GI diet, you should also; exercise regularly, control your stress levels, and rest properly.
We have to say that, you should talk with your doctor before starting any serious weight-loss diets; some of the diets are only fads and some can seriously impair your health.
Vegetables with Low Glycemic Index
Here is our list of healthy vegetables with low glycemic index:
20) Green Peas
The first vegetable in our list has a GI of 48; which is under the moderate levels of GI 56.
Raw celery root has only a GI of 35.
If you cook collards with fat, GI will be only 32. Also, collards are high in potassium; it’s an essential mineral that shouldn’t be ignored. Please read the article below to learn how vital potassium;
Eating collards regularly will help your heart health, your muscles and balance the sodium levels.
Just like the collards; artichoke has only 32 GI.
16) Brussels Sprout
Brussels sprout has a glycemic index of 32. 100 grams of it has 85 mg of vitamin C, which is the 94% of the daily value. Also, it has 389 mg of potassium and 9 grams of carbs.
100 grams of eggplant has 30 GI. It has only 3 grams of fiber and 2 mg of vitamin C.
Raw carrots have a GI of 16. If you boil them, instead of eating raw; GI levels raise to 39. It’s well known that carrots are good for eye health and help your immune system.
Spinach only has 15 GI. It has high levels of iron; this mineral can get you energized. Read the articles below to learn more:
150 grams of tomatoes has a GI of 15. This non-starchy, low GI food is ideal for diabetics.
Just like tomatoes, lettuce is also a non-starchy vegetable that has only 15 GI.
Cucumber is one of the vegetables with low glycemic index that holds a lot of water. A score of 15 in the glycemic index makes this an ideal veggie for weight loss.
Broccoli has 15 GI and the glycemic load is only 1!
This is the sixth vegetable with 15 GI, it’s definitely up to you to choose which vegetables you want to include in your diet.
Medium-sized capsicum has around 15 GI and the glycemic load is only 1. It has a lot of vitamin C which helps your body to absorb iron.
Chopped zucchini also has 15 GI and 1 glycemic load.
Even though avocados and tomatoes are actually fruits because of their taste they are used with vegetables. Also, we didn’t want to exclude avocados because they have only 15 GI.
Again, mushrooms are not like leafy vegetables, they are fungi and considered white vegetables. 70 grams of mushrooms have around 10 to 15 GI.
An onion has only 10 GI.
130 grams of chopped raw cabbage has 10 GI.
And here we are; the top of our list belongs to the vegan favorite vegetable, kale. It’s estimated to have a GI score between 2 and 4.
Kale has also high levels of vitamin A, C, and K.
In our list, we included a wide variety of vegetables with low glycemic index that have different vitamins and minerals. If your current diet doesn’t yield the results you want, you can pick any vegetable from here to improve your diet.
If you want to read more about healthy food options, check the articles below;
Thank you for reading.
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