Early Weight Management

The carbohydrate foods you select can make a big difference in body weight and overall health. The Glycemic Index (GI) was developed as a way to rank carbohydrate foods by blood glucose (sugar) levels. High-GI foods tend to create a quick surge in blood sugar while lower-GI items contribute to a more gradual increase. A number of studies have been conducted on both high and low GI diets with some suggesting that high-GI diets contribute to weight gain, diabetes and cardiovascular issues. Now a new study, published in the British Journal of Nutrition, looks at the role high and low GI breakfast foods play in adolescent weight gain.

A sample of 38 British children aged 8 through 11 ate breakfasts that were either high or low on the GI scale, depending on the day of the week. Researchers reported that these children consumed an average of 60 fewer calories on the days when they were fed a low-GI breakfast that included cooked oatmeal, all-bran cereal, soy or flaxseed breads with low-sugar jelly, and other items that were not overly processed.

The Bigger Picture. Although 60 calories doesn't sound like much, day after day, it amounts to quite a bit over the course of a lifetime. No one is born obese, and you don't get that way in a short time span. A modest long-term reduction in caloric intake can make all the difference in maintaining a healthy weight. The results of this study provide parents with an easy way to start their kids off in the right direction.
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