A diet with a low Glycaemic index or load is a safe and scientifically proven way to decrease chronic inflammation.
Chronic inflammation is considered a risk factor for diabetes and cardiovascular disease. It is also associated with certain cancers, the risk of dementia and more generally with increased mortality in the elderly.
It is therefore important to find natural ways to stop inflammatory processes. Several studies have shown that you can strongly modulate inflammation by choosing better carbohydrates. This is the principle of classifying carbohydrates according to their glycaemic index and their glycaemic load. Foods with a high glycaemic index, which are often processed and / or sugary, raise blood sugar excessively.
Eating fewer, smaller meals will decrease the frequency in which insulin is being released. This eating habit is one way to maintain insulin sensitivity and will help to prevent insulin resistance. Some other habits like limiting or avoiding processed carbohydrates, combined with exercising.
According to analysis of 60 studies : A diet with a low glycaemic index or load has significant anti-inflammatory effects, and not just in overweight and obese people. These effects of a GI diet are clearer than following advice from health authorities to increase the proportion of high-fiber foods or whole grain products. (The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 2014)
In 2018, researchers investigated the relationship between dietary inflammatory index (AII), glycaemic index, and glycaemic load in college students (who often have poor eating habits). The IIA indicates the inflammatory potential of food. It is based on all the inflammatory properties of food components. The IIA classifies an individual's diet on a scale from a maximum anti-inflammatory to a maximum pro-inflammatory. The closer the IIA is to 1, the more pro-inflammatory the diet.
The researchers analysed the eating habits of 110 students. Their results show that the more pro-inflammatory the diet, the higher the glycaemic index (GI). In other words, a diet with a high glycaemic index could contribute to chronic inflammation. High GI foods cause hyperglycaemia which itself causes oxidative stress and increases the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines. Given the role of hyperglycaemia on chronic inflammation, it is advisable to reduce blood sugar to decrease pro-inflammatorymechanisms.
A low glycaemic index diet is a great, science-backed way to decrease inflammation. A diet with poor quality carbohydrates (starches, refined flour, processed foods, sugar, etc.), with a high glycaemic index, increases blood sugar significantly, which leads to the production of nitric oxide, which is transformed into a free radical called superoxide. The association between nitrogen monoxide and superoxide gives rise to a powerful oxidant, peroxynitrite. Thus, a high glycaemic index diet contributes to oxidative stress and inflammation.
More generally, an anti-inflammatory diet contains a lot of low glycaemic fruits and vegetables that will not spike the blood sugar right after consumption. Omega-3s also have anti-inflammatory properties, so choose fatty fish, nuts.
The low glycaemic diet is not to prevent you from having tasty treats or deprive you from eating what you love.
Snacking has the potential to raise your insulin too frequently or even causing insulin resistance. You can limit your insulin response each time you eat or gaze by choosing healthier snacks.
The best way to limit insulin spikes, is by avoiding the sugar and other simple carbohydrates. Finally, it is important to do any type of physical activity and sport. It help decrease inflammation.
The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Volume 99, Issue 4, April 2014, Pages 813–833,
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5852758/ ( Lower Dietary Inflammatory Index Scores Are Associated with Lower Glycaemic Index Scores among College Students)