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Concept: Glycemic load


We propose that highly processed foods share pharmacokinetic properties (e.g. concentrated dose, rapid rate of absorption) with drugs of abuse, due to the addition of fat and/or refined carbohydrates and the rapid rate the refined carbohydrates are absorbed into the system, indicated by glycemic load (GL). The current study provides preliminary evidence for the foods and food attributes implicated in addictive-like eating.

Concepts: Nutrition, Food, Drug addiction, Addiction, Pharmacokinetics, Carbohydrate, Glycemic index, Glycemic load


Qualitative aspects of diet influence eating behavior, but the physiologic mechanisms for these calorie-independent effects remain speculative.

Concepts: Psychology, Nutrition, Diet, Dieting, Glycemic index, Diabetic diet, Glycemic load, Carnivore


The consumption of sweetened beverages, refined foods, and pastries has been shown to be associated with an increased risk of depression in longitudinal studies. However, any influence that refined carbohydrates has on mood could be commensurate with their proportion in the overall diet; studies are therefore needed that measure overall intakes of carbohydrate and sugar, glycemic index (GI), and glycemic load.

Concepts: Nutrition, Food, Carbohydrate, Sugar, Glycemic index, Potato, Glycemic load, Insulin index


Although a role of glycemic index (GI) and glycemic load (GL) in age-related cataract development is plausible, a few studies, all conducted in USA or Australia, provided results on this issue. The aim of the present study was to provide new original data from a Mediterranean population.

Concepts: Nutrition, Cultural studies, Carbohydrate, Glycemic index, Diabetic diet, Mediterranean climate, Glycemic load, Insulin index


The potential long-term association between carbohydrate intake and the risk of coronary heart disease (CHD) remains unclear, especially among populations who habitually have high-carbohydrate diets. We prospectively examined intakes of carbohydrates and staple grains as well as glycemic index and glycemic load in relation to CHD among 117,366 Chinese women and men (40-74 years of age) without history of diabetes, CHD, stroke, or cancer at baseline in Shanghai, China. Diet was assessed using validated food frequency questionnaires. Incident CHD cases were ascertained during follow-ups (in women, the mean was 9.8 years and in men, the mean was 5.4 years) and confirmed by medical records. Carbohydrate intake accounted for 67.5% of the total energy intake in women and 68.5% in men. Seventy percent of total carbohydrates came from white rice and 17% were from refined wheat products. Positive associations between carbohydrate intakess and CHD were found in both sexes (all P for heterogeneity > 0.35). The combined multivariate-adjusted hazard ratios for the lowest to highest quartiles of carbohydrate intake, respectively, were 1.00, 1.38, 2.03, and 2.88 (95% confidence interval: 1.44, 5.78; P for trend = 0.001). The combined hazard ratios comparing the highest quartile with the lowest were 1.80 (95% confidence interval: 1.01, 3.17) for refined grains and 1.87 (95% confidence interval: 1.00, 3.53) for glycemic load (both P for trend = 0.03). High carbohydrate intake, mainly from refined grains, is associated with increased CHD risk in Chinese adults.

Concepts: Nutrition, Energy, Heart disease, Carbohydrate, Glycemic index, Diabetic diet, Glycemic load, Insulin index


Postprandial glucose (PPG) and insulin responses play a role in carcinogenesis. We evaluated the association between dietary glycemic index (GI) and glycemic load (GL), markers of carbohydrate intake and PPG, and lung cancer risk in non-Hispanic whites.

Concepts: Nutrition, Lung cancer, Insulin, Diabetes mellitus, Carbohydrate, Glycemic index, Glycemic load, Insulin index


We prospectively examined the relationship between dietary glycemic index (GI) and glycemic load (GL), carbohydrate, sugars, and fiber intake (including fruits, vegetable of breads/cereals fiber) with successful aging (determined through a multidomain approach).

Concepts: Nutrition, Vegetable, Carbohydrate, Glycemic index, Diabetic diet, Potato, Glycemic load, Insulin index


Attracted by their high economic growth rates, young and growing populations, and increasingly open markets, transnational food and beverage corporations (TFBCs) are targeting Asian markets with vigour. Simultaneously the consumption of ultra-processed foods high in fat, salt and glycaemic load is increasing in the region. Evidence demonstrates that TFBCs can leverage their market power to shape food systems in ways that alter the availability, price, nutritional quality, desirability and ultimately consumption of such foods. This paper describes recent changes in Asian food systems driven by TFBCs in the retail, manufacturing and food service sectors and considers the implications for population nutrition.

Concepts: Nutrition, Food, Economics, Malnutrition, Carbohydrate, Glycemic index, Economic growth, Glycemic load


Dietary guidelines recommend interchanging protein foods (e.g., chicken for red meat), but they may be exchanged for carbohydrate-rich foods varying in quality [glycemic load (GL)]. Whether such exchanges occur and how they influence long-term weight gain are not established.

Concepts: Nutrition, Egg, Meat, Carbohydrate, Glycemic index, Pork, Glycemic load, Insulin index


Factors linked to glucose metabolism are involved in the etiology of several cancers. High glycemic index (GI) or high glycemic load (GL) diets, which chronically raise postprandial blood glucose, may increase cancer risk by affecting insulin-like growth factor. We prospectively investigated cancer risk and dietary GI/GL in the EPIC-Italy cohort. After a median 14.9 years, 5112 incident cancers and 2460 deaths were identified among 45,148 recruited adults. High GI was associated with increased risk of colon and bladder cancer. High GL was associated with: increased risk of colon cancer; increased risk of diabetes-related cancers; and decreased risk of rectal cancer. High intake of carbohydrate from high GI foods was significantly associated with increased risk of colon and diabetes-related cancers, but decreased risk of stomach cancer; whereas high intake of carbohydrates from low GI foods was associated with reduced colon cancer risk. In a Mediterranean population with high and varied carbohydrate intake, carbohydrates that strongly raise postprandial blood glucose may increase colon and bladder cancer risk, while the quantity of carbohydrate consumed may be involved in diabetes-related cancers. Further studies are needed to confirm the opposing effects of high dietary GL on risks of colon and rectal cancers.

Concepts: Immune system, Cancer, Nutrition, Colorectal cancer, Carbohydrate, Sugar, Glycemic index, Glycemic load