Low GI Bread
With the increasing popularity of GI diet, low GI breads also started to appear on supermarket shelves.
• Low-GI bread helps you keep full longer, avoid cravings and help stabilize your blood sugar levels by a slow release of energy.
• Adding soy flour, seeds, nuts and whole grains to bread helps make it high in fiber and low in GI. Interestingly, adding vinegar also does lower its GI value. Insoluble dietary fiber found in these breads helps lower blood cholesterol, stimulate bowel function and prevent constipation.
• Please be aware that very few of the breads in the market are actually in the low GI range- equal to or below 55 and most do have medium GI values of between 56 and 69.
• Whole grains include rye, barley, oats, seeds and cracked wheats and they are high in fiber, minerals and vitamins, low in GI depending on how much grains they have.
• Your best option is to check for the GI symbol on breads, bread being labeled as wholemeal, whole grain or sourdough will not always mean they are low in GI. Sure they will be much healthier than white breads, there is no doubt.
• It was a bit of a surprise when I first found out white bread caused as much or even bigger spike and crash than glucose in blood sugar. Yes it has a GI value of up to 100 depending on how processed and fresh it is.
• The more fluffier and the less dense a bread or a bread product is, the higher its GI value with a negative effect on blood sugar levels.
• High GI bread, particularly plain and fluffy white bread is believed to be responsible for various digestive problems as well as for complications leading to diabetes.
• However, low GI bread probably isn’t your best option if you need to eat wheat, soy or gluten free due to allergies. These breads are baked with various wheat products to be able to increase the fiber content.
Types of Low GI Breads:
• Sourdough bread may be low or high in GI depending on how much sourdough is added to white bread. If you like the taste of white bread, sourdough is the closest you will get to it as a type of low GI bread.
• Soy and linseed bread is higher in fat than other breads but the fat content is unsaturated and this bread is a good source of Omega-3 fatty acids and dietary fiber as well being a great low GI bread.
• Same goes for whole grain bread- it are generally known to be low in GI but how much fiber, grains or amylose starch there are in the bread as well as how processed the bread is, will influence the glycemic index value.
• In case of whole meal or brown bread, enzymes are used to soften the crust making it easily digestible, hence making it higher in GI.
• Stone-ground bread is also low in GI as the stone-ground flour is coarser and digested much slower.
• Fruit loaf is fine in terms of GI value, as long as it is dense and contains plenty of nuts, seeds and dried fruits.
Return from Low GI Bread to Glycemic Index home page
Or take me back to Complex Carbohydrates page