The gylcemic load chart lists a selection of foods that varies by chart, serving sizes, the amount of carbohydrates per serving, the glycemic index and the glycemic load. Many charts also contain an explanation of whether the number assigned to an index or load categorizes it as high or low.
The glycemic index is a measure of how quickly the carbohydrates in the food affect blood sugar level. An index of 55 or less is considered low, between 56 and 69 is medium and 70 or above is high. Foods with a low index are considered to have a slow glycemic response because they are digested slowly, provide extended energy and keep a person feeling full longer by increasing blood sugar levels at a steady rate. Foods with a high index, or fast glycemic response, are digested quickly, immediately increase blood sugar levels, and cause a spike in energy followed by a crash that leaves a person feeling hungry.
The glycemic load provides a measure of the impact of the food on blood sugar levels by considering the speed indicated by the index with the amount of carbohydrates consumed. It multiplies the glycemic index by the number of grams of carbohydrates per serving and divides by 100 to produce a number that is considered low if 10 or under, medium if between 11 and 19, and high if 20 or more.
These measurements help determine which foods keep a person feeling full longer and help control his appetite. These charts are useful for anyone who wants to control his blood sugar levels or monitor insulin levels.