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Check foods for lower glycemic value

Posted by: admin at 10:23 am on October 1st, 2015

  • Quinoa
  • lower glycemic value

I just recently found out I was diabetic, and my physician recommended low glycemic foods (something new to me). I love potatoes and was wondering if there is a healthy substitute that has a lower glycemic value.

The glycemic index is a system of assigning a number to carbohydrate-containing foods according to how much each food increases blood sugar, according to Mayo Clinic.

In simpler terms, the higher the glycemic index, the faster the body converts the food to sugar.

The lower the glycemic index, the longer you will feel full.

As an example, peanuts have a very low glycemic index, while white potatoes have a very high glycemic index.

An excellent replacement for potatoes and rice is quinoa.

In comparison, for a 150-gram serving of potatoes, the glycemic index would be around 89, while the same size serving of quinoa is only 53.

Quinoa is a complete protein because of its amino acid content when compared to other grains. Quinoa also contains high fiber and is gluten-free.

One study published in the Journal of Medicinal Foods showed that a diet of Peruvian Andean grains, including quinoa, helped manage type II diabetes and high blood pressure, which is often associated with diabetes.

Quinoa naturally grows with a bitter coating to discourage pests.

Most varieties sold come pre-washed, which eliminates the bitter taste. I always suggest rinsing the quinoa before preparation to remove any residual bitter coating that may be left.

Quinoa comes in a variety of options: white, red, black, flakes and flour.

There are many ways to eat quinoa. I put quinoa in my gluten-free pancake mix with a few blueberries.

Red quinoa in a salad is scrumptious, not to mention using quinoa in soups or muffins, with guacamole and added to dishes that contain seafood, pork, beef, turkey and chicken! Quinoa is also available as pastas.

The American Diabetes Association website, diabetes.org, has some awesome quinoa recipes.

Thought for the week: There's no need to be perfect to inspire others.

Let people get inspired by how you deal with your imperfections!

Next Free Nutrition class will be at 7 p.m. Oct. 12 at Organic Emporium, Victoria.

Phylis B. Canion is a doctor of naturopathic medicine and is a certified nutritional consultant; email her at docphylis@gmail.com. This column is for nutritional information only and is not intended to treat, diagnose or cure.