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Informing food choices and health outcomes by use of the dietary glycemic index

Authors

  • Chung-Jung Chiu,

    Corresponding author
    1. Jean Mayer US Department of Agriculture Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University, Boston, Massachusetts, USA
      A Taylor or C-J Chiu, Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University, 711 Washington Street, Boston, MA 02111, USA. E-mail: allen.taylor@tufts.edu or cj.chiu@tufts.edu, Phone: +1-617-556-3157, Fax: +1-617-556-3132.
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  • Simin Liu,

    1. Division of Preventive Medicine, Department of Medicine, Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts, USA; the Departments of Epidemiology and Medicine and Center for Metabolic Disease Prevention, University of California, Los Angeles, California, USA
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  • Walter C Willett,

    1. Departments of Nutrition and Epidemiology, Harvard School of Public Health; the Channing Laboratory, Boston, Massachusetts, USA
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  • Thomas MS Wolever,

    1. Department of Nutritional Sciences, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
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  • Jennie C Brand-Miller,

    1. Institute of Obesity, Nutrition and Exercise, University of Sydney, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
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  • Alan W Barclay,

    1. Institute of Obesity, Nutrition and Exercise, University of Sydney, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
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  • Allen Taylor

    Corresponding author
    1. Jean Mayer US Department of Agriculture Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University, Boston, Massachusetts, USA
      A Taylor or C-J Chiu, Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University, 711 Washington Street, Boston, MA 02111, USA. E-mail: allen.taylor@tufts.edu or cj.chiu@tufts.edu, Phone: +1-617-556-3157, Fax: +1-617-556-3132.
    Search for more papers by this author

A Taylor or C-J Chiu, Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University, 711 Washington Street, Boston, MA 02111, USA. E-mail: allen.taylor@tufts.edu or cj.chiu@tufts.edu, Phone: +1-617-556-3157, Fax: +1-617-556-3132.

Abstract

Considerable epidemiologic evidence links consuming lower glycemic index (GI) diets with good health, particularly upon aging. The GI is a kinetic parameter that reflects the ability of carbohydrate (CHO) contained in consumed foods to raise blood glucose in vivo. Newer nutritional, clinical, and experimental data link intake of lower dietary GI foods to favorable outcomes of chronic diseases, and compel further examination of the record. Based upon the new information there are two specific questions: 1) should the GI concept be promoted as a way to prolong health, and 2) should food labels contain GI information? Further, what are the remaining concerns about methodological issues and consistency of epidemiological data and clinical trials that need to be resolved in order to exploit the benefits of consuming lower GI diets? These issues are addressed in this review.

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