The great glycemic index hoax

The Glycemic Index is a hoax. There I’ve said it–and I’m sticking to it. There’s a much more important way to evaluate the food you eat…but I’ll get to that in a minute. First, let me tell you about a recent study I read in the journal Evidence Based Medicine.

It showed that increasing protein in your diet and reducing carbohydrates (sound familiar?) helped participants shed 25 pounds over six months–regardless of the glycemic index of the individual foods eaten.

Simply reducing carbohydrates of all kinds and increasing protein helped them achieve this dramatic result–no counting…no looking up every single item on your plate in a reference guide….no fretting over where things rank. Just a simple, common-sense, logical approach to choosing food.


I’ve been arguing for years that relying on the Glycemic Index (GI) to make individual food choices is misleading at best–and downright dangerous at worst.

Let me give you an example. A Snickers bar actually has a lower GI ranking than pretzels because it contains fat, and fat slows down how fast your body metabolizes a food into sugar (and that may be the only thing Snickers has going for it).

Of course, NEITHER of these are good food choices, which is what makes the GI index so dangerous. If you’re using it to choose between foods, you’d wind up picking a Snickers bar in this instance.

But just because it’s the “lesser of two evils” doesn’t make it any less evil.

Anyway, I digress…

The point is, the GI has no real relevance when it comes to losing weight–despite best- selling books to the contrary. What matters, as this study suggests, is something called glycemic load. This takes into account all of the food you eat in a given meal.

One of the biggest advantages the glycemic load has over the Glycemic Index is that it’s so much easier to follow. All you have to do is be more aware of your food choices–and opt for things you know are more nutritious–higher in protein and healthy fats, and lower in carbs–as much as you can.

It’s that simple.

And that goes back to the No. 1 principle of my New Hamptons Health Miracle…

Getting–and staying–healthy CAN be easy (even fun) if you have the right tools. The glycemic load is one of them…for the others, check out the rest of my website.