Potatoes, Glycemic Index, and Obesity

Foods with a high glycemic index (GI) are often associated with contributing to obesity. The glycemic index is the degree to which a food will increase blood glucose after consumption. It is commonly said that High GI foods decrease satiety which leads to overeating. Most varieties of potatoes have a high GI, however they also contain vitamins and minerals that play many roles in the body. The present study by Andersen et al. compares the consumption of high GI potatoes to low GI potatoes and how satieity is impacted.


The results of the study did not indicate any difference in satiety between eating high GI and low GI potatoes. The proposed mechanism by which high GI food would decrease satiety is that a spike in blood glucose would also create a spike in insulin, which would initiate the transfer of glucose out of the bloodstream and into the cells, creating a lower blood glucose later on. The lower blood glucose levels would then mimc a “low-fuel” state in the body, decreasing satiety. One proposed reason for the finding no correlation is that different people and different foods have different insulin responses to high GI foods. Even though a food has a high GI, the insulin response might be a greater indication of satiety.


The takeaway is that it eating high glycemic index foods may not be a contributor to overeating, and that foods should be monitored on a more case to case basis. Be aware as well of the quality and preparation of a certain type of food, like a potato. Potatoes have many healthy vitamins and minerals, but when the skin is removed or they are deep fried, a lot of those health benefits are striped away.


See the article here: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6266898/

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