Low in GI
Kumara-sweet potato is a low Glycemic Index (GI) food.
Kumara-sweet potato digests slowly, making for a gradual rise in blood sugar and longer appetite satisfaction. Depending on variety and colour, Kumara has a ranking between 44 and 61 on the Glycemic Index. It has the lowest ranking among all root vegetables, including the potato which can range anywhere from 58-93.
The Glycemic Index
In recent years, research scientists and dietitians have come to realize that the effect of consuming carbohydrates does not always have the same effect on the body. The Glycemic Index (GI) indicates how quickly the body converts certain types of carbohydrates into sugar; the lower a certain food ranks on the glycemic index, the slower the release of energy into the body.
Foods with a high GI are rapidly digested and absorbed and result in a more pronounced rise and fall of blood sugar levels. On the contrary, low-GI foods are slowly digested and absorbed, producing gradual rises in blood sugar and insulin levels, and have proven benefits for health.
Here is a graph which exemplifies the difference between High GI and Low GI in the rise and fall of blood sugar levels.
The Glycemic Index plays a critical role in determining what foods we should eat in order to avoid chronic disorders such as diabetes and heart disease. Moreover, Low GI diets have been shown help those who already have diabetes to keep their condition under control. Low GI foods can also help people to maintain a healthy weight as they control appetite and keep hunger at bay.