Eat These 8 Low Glycemic Foods for Stable Blood Sugar and a Healthier Body

"Low glycemic" and "glycemic index" are two health buzzwords that are often thrown around in food and wellness culture—kind of like ketogenic, gluten-free, and anti-inflammatory. They're discussed often, but many people might not know how they affect the body. Sure, they're healthy, but why are they healthy? What do they do for your body that other foods don't?

According to nutritionist Amy Shapiro from Real Nutrition NYC, a low-glycemic diet is beneficial to the body for a number of really major reasons, including for the prevention of insulin sensitivity, diabetes, and heart disease, and for the maintenance of hormone levels. It also decreases the amount of fat storage and stabilizes energy levels throughout the day.

Basically, a low-glycemic diet helps your body become wholly balanced and synchronized, which is kind of the definition of health, no? Keep reading to see the low-glycemic foods you should incorporate into your diet.

Photo: Camille Styles

The low-glycemic diet is all about keeping your blood sugar consistent. Yes, really, that's the basis for it. As nutritionist Ali Heller explains, "The glycemic index ranges from zero to 100, with pure glucose being 100. Foods that are low-glycemic tend to release their sugars slowly and steadily, as opposed to, say, table sugar, which would spike your blood glucose pretty quickly." These spikes are what you're trying to avoid.

"In general, it's smart to regulate your blood sugar to avoid it getting too high or too low, both of which come with their own set of problems," she says. "If your blood sugar gets too high, it signals the pancreas to release more insulin, which will decrease your blood sugar but can store that excess energy as fat. If your blood sugar gets too low, it may trigger fatigue, lethargy, and hunger." To avoid both issues, and maintain a level blood sugar, eat regularly and include low-glycemic foods into your diet.