The Slow-Carb Diet
Cut Calories with Low-GI Foods
You've eaten your weight in grapefruit, counted your share of fat grams, and sworn off bread, pasta, and every other carbohydrate, all in an effort to squeeze into your skinny jeans. Now you can finally breathe easier: The next big thing in weight loss isn't low-fat, low-flavor, or low-carb. It's the low-glycemic index diet, and if you haven't already heard of it, you will. Research is beginning to confirm what popular diet plans like The South Beach Diet (St. Martin's Griffin, 2005) have been preaching for years: Eating a diet composed mostly of foods with a low glycemic index may help you cut calories without cravings by balancing blood-sugar levels."Good" vs. "Bad" Carbohydrates
In the simplest of terms, a low-glycemic diet is generally high in good carbohydrates (like vegetables and whole grains) and low in bad ones (like chocolate chip cookies). Lean proteins and healthy fats round out the rest. "It's the middle ground between diets that are packed with protein, which promise satiety, and those loaded with fiber, which are the most nutritious," explains Walter Willett, MD, chairman of the department of nutrition at the Harvard School of Public Health. But that's not the whole story. Glycemic-index diet plans are some of the most complicated ever to hit the bookstore shelves. Some allow carrots, some don't. Some say bananas are okay, others say they're not. What most experts do agree on, however, is that following one may not do any harm and can even confer health benefits beyond basic weight loss. Before you try one, here's what you need to know.
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