Following a low-calorie and low glycemic index diet can help you lose weight healthfully. It takes a deficit of 3,500 calories to lose 1 pound of body weight, which means that lowering your daily calorie intake by 500 to 1,000 calories could help you lose 1 to 2 pounds a week. By choosing low glycemic index foods, you will feel less hungry and have fewer cravings. Low glycemic index foods, or low GI foods, have a GI value of 55 and below and can help you keep your blood sugar levels more stable between meals.
To help you feel full longer between meals on your low-calorie, low glycemic index diet, include nonstarchy vegetables in most of your meals. Nonstarchy vegetables include broccoli, leafy greens, cabbage, cauliflower, onions, mushrooms, tomatoes, asparagus, summer squash and eggplants. Nonstarchy vegetables contain less than 50 calories per cup and have glycemic index values under 15.
Temperate Climate Fruits
Temperate climate fruits have a lower glycemic index compared to tropical fruits. For example, apples and pears have a GI of 38, strawberries have a GI of 40, plums have a GI of 39, cherries have a GI of 22 and grapes have a GI of 46. Fruits are very satisfying for very few calories because of their low glycemic index and high fiber content. A small pear or apple contain 77 to 86 calories, a cup of strawberries contains 46 calories, a cup of cherries has 87 calories and a cup of grapes provides 104 calories.
The glycemic index of cheese cannot be measured because it does not contain carbohydrates. For that reason, you can estimate the glycemic index of cheese to be nil or zero, which makes it a good option for your low-glycemic diet. A ounce of low-fat cheese provides approximately 49 to 72 calories.
Eggs also have a glycemic index value of zero because they do not contain any carbohydrates. A large whole egg contains 72 calories: 55 calories from the yolk and 17 in the white. Because of their high protein content, eggs are very satiating and you can include them at any meal or snack of the day to keep you satiated while following your low-calorie, low glycemic index diet
Low-fat yogurt, whether it contains real sugar or a sugar substitute, has a low glycemic index of 24 to 27. A serving of 1/2 cup provides 119 calories if it is sweetened with real sugar and 40 to 50 calories if sweetened with sugar substitutes. Sugar-free, low-fat yogurt makes a satisfying snack to help you stick to your calorie-restricted and low glycemic index diet.
Oatmeal can make a satisfying low-calorie food, whether you have it for breakfast or as a snack. Choose rolled oat flakes, such as old-fashioned oatmeal, or steel-cut oats because of their lower glycemic index value. A serving of 1/2 cup of dry plain oatmeal contains 154 calories and has a glycemic index ranging between 52 and 57.
- USDA National Nutrient Database: Broccoli, Cooked, Boiled, Drained
- USDA National Nutrient Database: Egg, Whole, Raw, Fresh
- University of Sydney: The Glycemic Index
- American Journal of Clinical Nutrition: International Table of Glycemic Index and Glycemic Load Value
- USDA National Nutrient Database: Yogurt, Fruit, Low-fat,
- USDA National Nutrient Database: Oats, Dry