Glycemic Index (GI)

Glycemic Index (GI) – represents the rise in a person’s blood sugar (glucose) after eating carbohydrate products. This is a classification of food products based on their effect on the level of glucose in blood between 2-3 hours after consumption (so-called postprandial blood glucose level). The glycemic index is the average, percentage increase of glucose in blood after consuming a portion of the product containing 50 grams of digestible carbohydrates. The increase of sugar level in blood when consumed 50 grams of glucose was taken as the basis of the scale (100%).



This indicator is commonly used to select products, the task of which, is to accelerate or slow down blood sugar. For daytime consumption, low GI products are recommended i.e. approximately with the value below 60.

It is recommended that low GI foods be less than 60. The higher the GI value of a given product, the higher level of sugar after consumption. Products with high GI (marked with red in the chart) cause a high peak level of blood sugar, and its rapid decline. When there is a high concentration of glucose, the process of burning fat is stopped, and at a lower level we can feel tired and sleepy. Blood sugar drops are caused by the action of insulin, which allows glucose to enter the bloodstream into the cells. This knowledge is useful especially for people suffering from insulin resistance, hyperinsulinemia or reactive hypoglycemia. However, even carbohydrates with high glycemic index may be useful, for example, in stressful situations during exercise when glucose is directed primarily to muscle tissues.

IMPORTANT: Studies conducted several years ago have shown that some people react differently than the primary control group involved in the study of development of glycemic indexes. As a result, the glycemic index has lost its credibility and the majority of most respected dieticians now are using additional indicators.


I also do not recommend anyone to rely solely on the glycemic index. Personally, I think it is much more effective to check the glycemic load of a given product and only then to use glycemic index. The glycemic load, together with tables and its description can be found in a separate article at: <LINK>. After all, it is worth to know the approximate GI of the products that are most common in your diet – because as I’ve mentioned, they work for most people.

The glycemic index is primarily about carbohydrates because proteins and fats do not cause a significant increase in blood glucose.


Indeks glikemiczny dotyczy głównie węglowodanów, ponieważ białka i tłuszcze nie powodują znacznego wzrostu poziomu glukozy we krwi.





The higher the GI value of a given product, the higher level of sugar after consumption. Products with high GI cause a high peak level of blood sugar, and its rapid decline.

Slow absorption and gradual increase and decrease in blood sugar levels after consuming low glycemic index products (marked in yellow), facilitates control of blood sugar levels in people suffering from glucose abnormalities. It is also often recommended for healthy people because it causes less insulin secretion. It is now known, however, that insulin secretion is not always correlated directly with the intake of carbohydrates and their glycemic index. To find out more, I encourage you to read the article about the insulin index.

The most beneficial for regular consumption are products with IG not exceeding 60. Slow carbohydrates absorption also helps to reduce hunger and energy loss during the day.

Too high blood sugar causes hyperglycaemia and if the level is too low it can result with hypoglycaemia. The optimal level of sugar in individuals is about 80-90 mg/dl.

You should know that: Different sources give different GI values depending on the conditions of conducing GI tests.

It is worth pointing out that the glycemic index changes under the influence of heat treatment. So, the way you prepare your food has a huge impact on the way how your blood glucose rises. A good example are carrots, which as a raw vegetable has a IG = 30, and after cooking its glycemic index is as much as 80!





To make it easier to use the table below, I recommend using the following keyboard shortcut “ctrl + f” (search) and then enter the name of the product you want to check.




Products with low glycemic index


Eggs 0 Fatty cheese (yellow, blue cheese etc.) 0
Coffee, tea 0 Sour cream 0
Mayonnaise (eggs, oil, mustard) 0 Soy sauce (without sugar) 0
Seafood 0 Vegetable / animal fat 0
Fish 0 Dry wine (red, white) 0
Beef 0 Vinegar 0
Spices (oregano, basil, vanilla etc.) 0 Shellfish 0
Avocado 15 Agave (syrup) 0
Gooseberry 15 Brussels sprouts 15
Onion 15 Courgette 15
Chicory 15 Black currant 15
Creeping beans 15 Green beans 15
Mushrooms 15 Ginger 15
Cauliflower 15 Cabbage 15
Sprouts (mung bean, soybeans, …) 15 Sauerkraut (sour cabbage) 15
Fennel 15 Gherkins (with no sugar) 15
Locust bean gum 15 Almonds 15
Cucumber 15 Olives 15
Walnuts, hazelnuts, cashews, pistachios 15 Peanuts (fistas) 15
Chili Peppers 15 Peppers (red, green, yellow) 15
Pesto 15 Pinenut 15
Leek 15 Rhubarb 15
Radish 15 Lettuce 15
Celery 15 Soy 15
Sorrel 15 Asparagus 15
Spinach 15 Tofu 15
Wheat germ 20 Acerola 20
Acerola 20 Artichoke 20
Eggplant 20 Dark chocolate (> 80% cocoa) 20
Cherries 20 Fructose 20
Soybean yoghurt 20 Cocoa (with no sugar) 20
Artichokes 20 Bamboo shoots 20
Soya cream 25 Lemon juice (unsweetened) 25
Tamarind sauce (sugar free) 25 Goosberry 25
Blueberries 25 Dark chocolate (>70% cocoa) 25
Red currant 25 Mung bean, flageolet 25
Hummus 25 Blackberries 25
Soy flour 25 Raspberries 25
Almond butter 25 Butter from hazelnuts 25
Pumpkin seeds 25 Strawberries 25
Cherries 25  Green lentils 25
Raw beetroots 30 Cooked chickpeas 30
Red lentils 30 Garlic 30
Jam sweetened with fruit juice 30 Grapefruit 30
Pear 30 Chinese noodles (soy or mung beans) 30
Tangerines 30 Passion fruit 30
Raw carrot 30 Marmalade without sugar 30
Almond milk 30 Oatmeal (uncooked) 30
Skimmed milk powder 30  Soy milk 30
Fresh apricots 30 Pamela 30
Tomatoes 30 Turnips, Swedish turnip (raw) 30
Yellow lentils 30 Fat-free cottage cheese 30
Grain amaranth 35 White beans 35
Peaches 35 Canned chickpeas 35
Black bean 35 Yeast 35
Beer yeast 35 Wild rice 35
Beans white – pearl, borlotti, black 35 Fresh figs 35
Pomegranate 35 Green peas 35
Stewed apples 35 Dried apples 35
Fresh apple 35 Skimmed yogurt 35
Indian corn 35 Quinoa 35
 Ice cream sweetened with fructose 35 Chickpea flour 35
 Dijon mustard 35 Seeds (linseed, sesame, poppy seeds) 35
Nectarine 35 Quince 35
 Oranges 35 Dried tomatoes 35
Tomato puree 35 Raw selery (root) 35
 Plums 35 Tomato juice 35
Apple Sorbet 35

Products with medium glycemic index


Unripe / uncooked broad bean 40 Wholewheat flour bread (sourdough or yeast bread) 40
Canned beans 40 Dried figs 40
Buckwheat 40 Buckwheat (porridge) 40
Lactose 40 Wholewheat matzo 40
Wholemeal pasta – al dente 40 Carrot juice 40
Peanut butter (sugar free) 40 Coconut milk 40
Dried apricots 40 Bran (oat and wheat) 40
Oat 40 Preserved quinoa (sugar-free) 40
Pumpernickel (with no sugar, malt and honey) 40 Oatmeal (uncooked) 40
Prunes 40 Spaghetti al dente (boiled 5min) 40
Pineapple (fresh) 45 Unripe bananas 45
Wholemeal toasted bread 45 Wholemeal rye bread 45
Barley (grain) 45 Bulgur 45
Coconut 45 Khorasan wheat flour (kamut) 45
Pasta: Capellini type 45 Whole-grain breakfast cereals 45
Brown rice (basmati) 45 Grapefruit juice (unsweetened) 45
Orange juice (fresh, unsweetened) 45 Wholemeal bread toasts 45
Grape (green and red) 45 Green canned peas (without sugar) 45
Cranberry 45 Sweet potatoes 50
Chayote 50 Spelled bread 50
Wholemeal dough (with no sugar) 50 Couscous (full grain) 50
Apple juice (unsweetened) 50 Kiwi 50
Durum wheat pasta 50 Mango 50
Musli (unsweetened) 50 Lichee fruit 50
Persimmon, khaki 50 Basmati rice 50
Brown rice 50 Apple juice (unsweetened) 50
Cranberry juice (unsweetened) 50 Surimi (crab sticks) 50

Products with high glycemic index


Canned peaches 55 Red rice 55
Ketchup 55 Cassava 55
Mustard (with sugar) 55 Nutella® 55
Papaya 55 Grape juice (unsweetened) 55
Mango juice (unsweetened) 55 Spaghetti (soft-cooked) 55
Sushi 55 Ripe Bananas 60
Puffed barley 60 Cocoa (sweetened) / chocolate (instant) 60
Semolina (porridge) 60 Chestnut 60
Lazania (wheat durum pasta) 60 Ice cream sweetened with sugar 60
Mayonnaise with sugar 60 Melon 60
Honey 60 Fatty milk 60
Fatty milk 60 Canned apricots 60
Porridge 60 Pizza 60
Jasmine rice 60 Long grain rice 65
Canned pineapple 65 Cooked beetroot 65
Whole wheat flour bread 65 Wholemeal bread 65
White flour rye bread 65 Jam with sugar 65
Maize 65 Couscous 65
Chestnut Flour 65 Mars®, Snikers®, Nuts®, etc. .. 65
Muesli (with sugar, honey, etc.) 65 Canned quinoa (with sugar) 65
Raisins 65 Maple syrup 65
Tamarind (sweetened) 65 Jacket potatoes 70
Puffed amaranthus 70 Baguette 70
White rice 70 Sponge cake 70
Brown sugar 70 Rolls 70
Chips 70 Rice bread 70
Sugar 70 Dried dates 70
Pearl barley (porridge) 70 Gruel 70
White flour matzo 70 Corn flour 70
White flour pasta 70 Molasses 70
Beverages (sweetened) 70 Polenta 70
Millet 70 Ravioli 70
Risotto 70 Croissant 70
Rusks 70 Tacos 70
Boiled potatoes 75 Watermelon 75
Pumpkin 75 Zucchini 80
Cooked broad bean 80 Cooked carrot 80
Puree 85 White flour 85
Rice milk 85 Parsnip 85
Popcorn 85 Cornflakes 85
Puffed rice 85 Parboiled rice 85
Turnips, Swedish turnip (cooked) 85 Cooked celery (root) 90
Tapioca 90 White flour bread 90
Potato starch/flour 90 Rice flour 90
Baked potatoes 100 Fried potatoes 100
Glucose 110