High glycemic foods to avoid for healthy hearts are those that cause unacceptable glycemic impact when eaten as anything that even approaches a “normal” serving size.
➡ Including significant amounts of high glycemic foods can easily defeat efforts for weight loss, even when such efforts include regular exercise.
➡ Quickly digested, high-glycemic-index (GI) carbohydrates enter the bloodstream rapidly, causing a surge of glucose.
This fast impact of glucose is met with an equalizing amount of insulin to move the glucose into muscle and fat cells.
The result is an overcompensation—and low blood glucose.
➡ Then, looking for a quick fix to the unpleasant hypoglycemic feelings, people often choose another high-GI food.
Naturally, another glycemic surge occurs, and your body takes a roller coaster ride again and again.
➡ The effects leave your body feeling hungry and fatigued while causing fat storage instead of fat burning.
It’s important to note that as used here, the term “high glycemic” specifically refers to glycemic load – not glycemic index.
Here’s the difference:
The glycemic load (GL) of food is a number that estimates how much the food (itself) will raise a person’s blood glucose level after eating it.
The glycemic index is a value assigned to foods based on how slowly or how quickly those foods cause increases in blood sugar levels.
➡ If blood sugar levels are above normal, they are toxic and can cause blindness, kidney failure, and increase a person’s risk for heart disease.
Glycemic load is the better metric of the “real-world” effect of a given food on blood sugar since it takes into account portion size as well as the glycemic index.
Eliminating (or at least drastically reducing) the use of high glycemic load foods is a major underlying principle of a healthy eating plan.
When talking about High Glycemic foods to avoid for healthy hearts, these are the troublemakers:
Foods Rich In Highly Processed Carbohydrates
➡ Short-grain white rice, rice pasta, macaroni and cheese from mix
➡ Russet potato, pumpkin
➡ white bread
Most breakfast cereal
➡ Cornflakes, puffed rice, bran flakes, instant oatmeal
➡ flour tortillas
➡ Pretzels, rice cakes, popcorn, saltines
➡ snack chips
➡ soft drinks
Other examples of processed carbohydrates are bleached, enriched wheat flour and white sugar.
Because these foods have been stripped of their nutrients and fiber, they are often called “empty calories.”
Some of the most common high glycemic foods to avoid for healthy hearts include:
➡ sports drinks (e.g., Gatorade, Powerade, etc.)
➡ soft drinks
➡ sweetened iced tea, lemonade, etc.
➡ Sugar-sweetened candies / ice cream / yogurt
➡ Fruit juices
➡ Melons and pineapple
➡ Fruit “leather”, strips, etc.
Other Foods To Avoid
Be aware that there are also some foods that are NOT “high glycemic” but are still best avoided by dieters.
Among the most common of such weight-loss “troublemakers” are:
➡ Alcoholic beverages (including beer, wine, and “hard” liquors)
➡ Fructose-rich foods most commonly fruit juices, honey, high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) and agave nectar
➡ Some meats, butter, cheese, nuts, mayonnaise, etc.
LEARN MORE: Junk Food Is Just Junk By Any Other Name